Between the frantic rush of call shifts and the emotional rollercoaster of feeling semi-competent to completely inept that is inherent to intern year, it's easy to neglect time for self-reflection. Almost three month since residency orientation (has it been that long already?), it's definitely time to put metaphorical pen to paper.
Full disclosure: I absolutely love what I do. The long hours can be exhausting, but that's off-set by the fact that I'm doing what I set out to do back when I started along the path of a neuroscience major at the University of St. Thomas. Setting the goal of pursuing medical school -- specifically a career in psychiatry -- and actually seeing it through to fruition has been incredibly rewarding. On top of that, I was accepted to my number one residency program, for which I split time between Hennepin County Medical Center and Regions Hospital. I'm thrilled to be a part of a program that prioritizes working for underserved populations, delivery of high-quality care, and teaching as a central crux of the hospitals' mission/vision.
As for music, even with all of the above, I've been able to continue my teaching practice on the weekends, albeit with some creative rescheduling from week-to-week to accommodate residency hours. I'm grateful to my students and their families who have been flexible with scheduling, and it's immensely gratifying to see students who came to me years ago with no musical background whatsoever and now have a level of competency that is humbling. So proud!
I also recently finished a concert series to celebrate the release of Masquerade, performing all over the Twin Cities as well as a recording stint in Boston, MA at Berklee School of Music with the inimitable vocalist/jazz pianist Jireh Calo, who invited me to be a part of her upcoming album as well as record some pieces for YouTube (see the "Collaborations" page for the latter!), a few shows in Madison, WI, and a concert in Bloomington, IN. I'm currently on a bit of a performance hiatus, but that doesn't mean I'm not working on anything new. In fact, a few words about several new projects...
The above is a sneak peek at trio material I've been working on with local guitarist extraordinaires Ben Abrahamson and Ryan Picone. We're cooking up a varied set that we hope to share in both recorded form and live later this year. Stay tuned!
Finally, on the note of recordings, I'm also hard at work on a new album to follow Masquerade. It's still too early to talk about it in any great detail, but given the warm reception to Masquerade and the accompanying live shows, I will say that this new album will expand upon some of the ideas I explored in Masquerade while drawing upon the music of many cultures in a way that is both respectful to the source material and also allows for unique treatments of familiar melodies. I hope to share more about this new project in the coming months.
As always, to all friends and fans who continue to follow my music in spite of periods of silence, my continued gratitude and appreciation for all the help and support along this journey.