Anyone out there play in eateries or public places? What are your challenges?  I have recently started playing out in a cocktail bar. As a classically trained musician, I am actually finding it very challenging to play "easier" pieces (fake book stuff and arranged pop pieces). While the music is easier than what I have played my whole life, the style and presentation of it is so different. There is an element of just letting go and having fun that I am not used to either. The letting go of the "perfection" of classical pieces and just playing, being in the groove, is actually hard to get to. Sometimes improvising and playing some of my own compositions give me a break from adjusting to this new way of playing. Overall I like doing this and find that it inspires me to practice more often and learn new pieces more often. Helps me to make my music more of a social event. Just wanted to check in-to hear someone else's story on this world. 

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Dear Iva: I am no expert, but when I can't find the groove, I try these things:  Breathe - Close your eyes, listen to your breath, our breath contains many lessons.  Focus on your heart more than the notes.  Is the heart open or closed?  Every song (piece) has a story, tell a good story.  Give thanks for that moment, your sound is a gift, express that thanks to your audience...  Good luck - xie xie (thanks)

Thank you ChinaBlues! That is beautiful. 

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