I had the pleasure of singing for some of the residents who live at The Atria in Grapevine, Texas. My schedule permitting, I sing to there on the first Monday of the month. I usually sing for the folks back in the Memory Care unit. They are a lively bunch, and they like to sing.
As I have shared before, I take an iPad with me and have it on a short music stand. My iPad has all the words to all the songs I am comfortable performing (probably over 200+). I also use an AirTurn Bluetooth pedal, which lets me advance the pages up and down as I sing, should I need the words or chords.
Well, as luck would have it . . . the AirTurn pedal battery was dead (it's recharging here in my office as I type this). So, I had no choice but to sing from memory for 50 minutes. The audience was waiting.
I sang and played, and surprised myself in the process. I never turned the iPad on, and just sang and sang. We had a good time. One resident got up and started dancing in place. People were laughing and enjoying themselves.
Surprisingly, I was too. Not being "locked in" to the iPad helped me have better eye contact with the residents, to connect better . . . and the process helped me focus better on singing.
The experience . . . was a joyful one for me.
I will say again . . . I vary my song sets all the time. I don't like singing the same songs every month to the older adults I am privileged to sing to. I have love song sets, and travel song sets, show tune song sets, folk song sets, funny song sets, and gospel song sets.
Variety is the spice of life.
As I have shared before, I only sing about 4-5 times a month because of my current schedule. Some call my use of an iPad a crutch, and I don't really disagree with that. If I sang multiple times each week, I am sure my music memorization would be much better.
Well, today my "system" failed me. But it all worked out. I am happy to report, my memory is better than I thought.
My goal is to sing more and more songs from memory, but it is nice to have the iPad and AirTurn pedal if I feel led to change things up and include a song I didn't have on my set list.
All in all, I didn't think I had 50 minutes of music memory in me. Turns out I was wrong.
God's grace still amazes me . . . ><>