One of my characters in the novel, One Light Year Road Trip has musical ability.  Lordy, this author just doesn’t have that kind of musical ability.  My characters made me stretch, go and reach out.

Out doing research in the field

I met a street player while I was taking a trip to the grocery store.  The man was playing his instrument, right outside the entrance.  After he stopped playing, I asked him a few of questions about his music.  He said that he was born into a musical family.  He always played music in good times and bad times.

We were talking about his instrument, which looked like flute but it wasn’t a flute.  It was called a recorder.  He played beautifully.  People stopped to admire his music and to tip him.

It was cool to know that the flute goes back thousands of years.  While I was doing research for the book I learned that there are different types of flutes. The made materials used for the flute varied; thus each flute produced a distinct sound.

The Native American Flute sounds different from the East Indian Flute, which sounds totally different from the German Flutes also known as Western Concert Flute.

When played well, I think they all sound beautiful.

Doing primary research

My close friend is also a musician.  He had been giving me some lessons on how to strum the guitar.  There is so much to know, how to hold the guitar, where to put your feet when you are playing, frets on the guitar, tuning the guitar, pitch, notes.  Those are just basics.

One instrument alone can be further broken down to even more specific categories.  Take guitar for example, there is the Spanish guitar, the electric guitar, and the steel guitar.  They all have different sounds.

Learning music is like learning another language. You have to have good ear.  And yes, the ear can be trained.