Copyright

Copyright: (n) the exclusive right to make copies in music

I had just turned nineteen years of age when I was sitting in the back area of my mother and father’s loan company which they had opened in our small town, and for some inexplicable reason, there was a piano situated in one of the corners.

I don’t know how it got in there. I don’t know whether someone was unable to pay their loan and offered their piano as penance—but it was there.funny wisdom on words that begin with a C

I was also present—with my new wife, whom I had only been married to for about seven months, but we already had a first son. (You do the math.)

Long story apparently being made longer, I decided to walk over to that piano and write a song. I had sung songs for years. I had done my karaoke versions of popular tunes long before the “Kary” came from “Okie.”

I don’t know what gave me the idea that I could write a song. Maybe it was because I was nineteen and pretty convinced I could do anything. Somewhere in the expanse of the next hundred and eighteen minutes, I wrote two songs. I had no idea if anybody would think they were good—I was so damn impressed with them that the notion of seeking another opinion seemed redundant.

I did not know if I would ever write another song, so I immediately wanted to make sure these two songs were not only recorded, but copyrighted—to make sure that no less-talented individuals would steal them, attaining great notice and gain.

There were two ways to copyright my songs. I could make original copies of the lead sheet and words, and mail them to myself, and never open that envelope because it would have the stamped date on the outside from the official Post Office.

This did not sound dramatic enough to me.

So instead, I pursued the other avenue, which was to contact the Library of Congress in Washington, D.C, and receive innumerable forms, which I filled out, paying a small price for each composition. From that point on, once it was cleared that my songs were indeed original, I would have a copyright for all time.

My God. Who could resist such majestic red tape?

I went through the entire process, and even today, somewhere buried deep in a box in one of my closets, is a certificate informing the whole world that my two songs made a visit to the Library of Congress in Washington, D.C., and returned home again—sanctified.


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Aria

dictionary with letter A

Aria: (n) a long, unaccompanied solo for voice, typically in an opera or oratorio.

If human beings were not so pretentious, we would almost be fun. At least it would be closer.

Over the years, I have sung a song or two. Actually I’ve done much more than that–I’ve recorded, written songs and performed on stages all over the United States.

And after the show, folks will come up to talk to me, wanting to make some sort of personal connection.

Some people are just genuine and pour out their hearts with the present words that are floating around inside their minds. They are delightful.

Others feel the need to prove their intelligence and acumen by making a more specific statement, which is usually geared more to promoting their own resume than encouraging my soul. Two categories for these:

  1. “You sound like…”
  2. And “I can tell by your voice that you’ve been professionally trained…”

Concerning the latter, it is an amazing fact that although most people don’t like opera or favor operatic singing, they still use that particular style as a measuring stick for vocal quality. (It is similar to hating Chevys but making your Ford feel bad by constantly talking about the other product.)

I don’t know why we think that opera singers are better at their craft than some guy with a guitar in a coffee shop, intoning his anthem–but we do.

It really isn’t an appreciation for the aria or the performer, but rather, letting everyone in the room know that we are aware of this medium and to a certain degree, can even pronounce the unusual names associated with it.

This is why I got tickled when Pavarotti got a cold and couldn’t sing.

It was so human.

And then, another time, he had voice strain and had to cancel his promised aria.

When you remove all the fictitious ideas from the human race, you end up with a much smaller pile of knowledge.

But it actually all ends up being true.

 

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