Currently: November 2017

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I always like to take time during holiday breaks to slow down and reflect on what’s been going on lately. Here’s what I’m up to this week:

  • Relaxing for a few days with very little on the agenda beyond eating and having a game night with friends.
  • Enjoying two lovely Thanksgiving meals with family.
  • Feeling grateful for so many things.
  • Still walking daily. I’ve gotten so attached to my daily walk for its effect on my mental health and meditative power to affect my mindset that I’m committed to bundling up even when windchills here in Minnesota are reaching single digits (😬)
  • Drawing a lot with my new markers😍
  • Releasing expectations on my time (for once!)
  • Listening to: NPR Music Turns 10 yearly recap episodes of All Songs Considered, Chris Thile + Brad Mehldau (I LOVE their cover of Elliott Smith's Independence Day), Tulio Araujo, Eunbi Kim playing music of Fred Hersch, St. Vincent (Strange Mercy is still my favorite), Maria Rita, and Sharon Jones’ new posthumously released album (RIP!)
  • Pondering the question "What Makes A Great Album Last?" (also inspired by NPR Music). I love how Robin Hilton expresses it in this episode: “I think for a record to truly stand the test of time, it's got to find a way to weave itself into your DNA.” Those albums that I had strong emotions about, related to formative times in my life, are definitely imprinted, especially albums either from the late 90s/early 00s or that I discovered then: Ben Folds Five's Whatever and Ever Amen, Elliott Smith's XO and Figure 8, Radiohead's OK Computer, Joni Mitchell's Blue and Court and Spark, and basically all of Stevie Wonder's albums from the 70s, especially Innervisions. (This topic could be a whole post!) 
  • Reading: Grit by Angela Duckworth, and just finished The Girl Who Drank the Moon by Kelly Barnhill
  • Catching up on The Good Place Season 2.
  • Roasting all of the vegetables (squash, brussels sprouts, and cauliflower!)
  • Rehearsing for this concert of pieces for trombone by women composers with my friend Lauren Husting.
  • Experimenting with breathwork
  • Pondering my plans for 2018 - I'm 90% sure that my word for the year is going to be CONNECT.
  • Looking forward to getting out of town to someplace slightly warmer in a couple weeks - I’m going to North Carolina for a concert with James Newcomb.
  • Getting ready to finish up my set of composition prompts next week and brainstorming about what form they’ll evolve into next. To stay informed about this resource when I finish it, sign up below!

I’m wishing everyone a wonderful Thanksgiving (unless you’re not in the U.S., then happy Thursday!) - if you’re reading this, I’m grateful for you!

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Rebecca Hass

Pianist and composer