Audra Krell

On Purpose

Archive for the category “Music”

Practice Matters

Last week I was reading Seth Godin’s blog on Sight Reading and it got me thinking about practicing. He said he never practiced his clarinet, like ever, and the teacher would scold him for only practicing 3 or 4 hours that week. I was the same way, a good sight reader, and so it appeared I could play better than I could.

But I’ve come to realize, practice matters. A little known fact, is I went to CU-Boulder on a bass clarinet scholarship. That’s right folks, I used to play the biggun. In the Spring of ’89 I closed the case on Big Clara Net, never to be opened again. You see, I was failing music theory. Actually to be more than fair to myself, I didn’t have an F, but a grade of C or higher was required to move on to Music Theory 2. I got a tutor, studied super hard and used my whole brain to understand the concepts. But music theory is a lot like math… and now I have a degree in English Lit.

What I didn’t know, is if I had practiced my instrument more, I would have passed music theory.

The arts aren’t about talking about doing art. They aren’t about formulas, logic and math. The whole thing hinges upon actually doing the art. Music isn’t just about theory, you have to practice, play and create. Writing isn’t about a laptop, pens, tablets or books, but about sitting down every day to write and create something larger than yourself.

Further, to all the education systems cutting their art programs, art isn’t about viewing it on a video game or computer screen. It must be experienced, taken in and put back into the world as a new creation. Our children need the schools to provide opportunities to practice their music, visual and dramatic arts. Students need to practice to find out who they are, to discover their purpose.

Today, because of the public education art programs I was involved in, I’m a vocalist and percussionist. Clanging cymbals and banging the gong doesn’t require quite as much practice as clarinets and vocals, but does require a lot of rhythm and counting.

Counting? I probably should practice math more. Nah.


Christmas Pageant Concussion

I’ve had another percussion injury while rehearsing for the Winter Wonder performances at Scottsdale Bible Church. The first one involved a screw pressing into my knee cap and wasn’t nearly as funny as what happened the other night.In an epic move that is only rivaled by stepping on a rake, I managed to hit myself in the head with a flying mallet.

As I approached the percussion table, a pair of heavy mallets hung an inch over the edge. I bent down to put my purse below the table, chopped the mallet and it spiraled up, hitting me in the head above my left eye brow. A little to the center and it would have broke my nose, a little lower and I lose an eye. Yes, I “see” how lucky I am to just have a bump on my head and a self-diagnosed slight concussion. Well, I probably don’t have the concussion, but I had to walk away with some dramatic name for what happened.

Stars swirled and sugar plums danced in my head. My partner is a Cardiologist and first hand witness, he thought maybe I needed to sit down. Even with all his medical experience, I’m pretty sure he’d never seen anything like that and he’ll be lucky if he ever does again.

I’ve since visited some percussion injury forums, and oh yes my friends, they are real. I was just seeking support, a little understanding from my fellow band mates. I’ve discovered that in sports, a common injury is mallet finger. Again, how blessed am I to only have mallet head? Sadly, there is no forum for mallet head injuries. Maybe I should start one. Surely I’m not the only one this has ever happened to?

Percussionists of the world, I beg you! Share your stories of misfortunate mallet malady. You don’t have to be alone any longer.

And for the rest of you, be sure and come on out for the greatest Christmas pageant ever. Winter Wonder is Friday night December 9 at 7:00, Saturday at 3:00 and 7:00 and Sunday at 2:00. No tickets necessary but do arrive early for great seats.

Did They Hear What I Hear?

Sunday morning was another one of "those" morning for me, the kind where I sit in Church and weep. Our 17- year old, Keegan, played guitar in big church. His gorgeous sound filled the main speakers and with every finger pluck, every strum, I could barely keep it together.

And it's not just because he's ours. His playing enables my relationship with my Creator. I have a greater ability to worship and thank God as his guitar ushers me to throne room. I hear significance, power and love from our father in Heaven.

But get this, at exactly the same moment, yet precisely 2407 miles from Scottsdale, 14- year- old Mason led worship at Beach Community Church in Costa Rica. He stood in front of his brothers and sisters and poured out his heart with his guitar. 

Some of these wonderful people had a personal encounter with Jesus Christ. 

Others began to figure out who they were, they found their identity in Christ.

And it's my prayer, that they heard what I heard and that they too,

felt the mountains tremble.

I’m a Phreak

I'm a Phil Vassar freak and always have been. So when my chance came along to officially become a Phreak I got right on board! Mostly I want to promote his song, 'She's On Her Way," if you haven't heard it, download the acoustic version by filling out the form above. It's a very sentimental song that is great for graduation and Father's Day. 

Let me know what you think after you hear it….oh and you'll want a kleenex.

I’m Alive…And well.

Oh this marriage has been a long time coming!  Kenny Chesney and Dave Matthews have a new song out called "I'm Alive".  Fantastic lyrics and Dave's vocals are incredible!

Now I'm Alive
And well
And today you know that's good enough for me
Breathing in and out's a blessing can't you see?
Today's the first day of the rest of my life
I'm Alive.

Back to God

I have loved this song from the moment I heard it back in 2008. It makes me cry and brings me to my  knees every time. The video below is a rough filming of Randy Houser performing "Back to God" at a concert on the east coast. Hopefully it will inspire you to get the album from iTunes.

 On this day, 9-11-09, and every day, the only answer is to give this world back to God.

…In these darkest days are you not afraid 
That it's too late
You gotta get down on your knees, believe 
Fold your hands and beg and plead 
You gotta keep on praying

You gotta cry, rain tears of pain 
Pound the floor and scream His name 
'Cause we're still worth saving

We can't go on like this and live like this
We can't love like this
We gotta give this world back to God. . .

No Longer Rockin the Beer Gut

I don't even like beer, but even so, us ladies can develop the dreaded beer gut. After 4 months and 12,000 treadmill miles, I'm no longer rockin the beer gut. May it always be so.
This song is quickly climbing the country charts. . .wow.


Brooks – Dunn = Done


Well I haven't been able to write about it because I can barely take it, but it's true, after 20 years together Brooks & Dunn are calling it quits. 

It's going to be like white without rice, M without M's, bread without butter, and Star without Bucks. 

I have loved these guys from the first time I heard them. I've grown up with them and let them tell my story over and over with their songs. 

I literally wore my first pair of boots out dancing to Neon Moon, Little Miss Honkeytonk and the king of them all, Boot Scoot Boogie. 

I can't wait for their new album, especially the "and then some". September 8 will be a great day and I will definitely try to catch them live one more time in the next year. 

You should too.

ReCreate Conference

IMG_0123This week I have the honor and privilege of being at the ReCreate conference in Franklin, TN. Yes, it is -4 with the windchill right now, but the conference is worth every second of the freezing pain. People have come from all over the world, I've met friends from Peru, Egypt and Ireland, as well as several people from California, Kentucky, Michigan and even Hilton Head.

This is an incredible group of people doing ministry because they love God. They are totally sold out to Jesus, just like Michael W Smith is in the picture above. He led us in an amazing time of worship.

 Having a heart that is totally sold out to God, always works for me.

Head over to Shannon's at Works for Me Wednesday, to see what's working for everyone else!

My Eyes Adored You

Jersey_boys_2 A highlight of our trip to Vegas: seeing Jersey Boys, the story of Frankie Valli and the Four Season’s rise to fame.  If you ever have the chance to see this Broadway show, I highly recommend it.

A special stage has been built at the new Palazzo Hotel.  It is beautiful and fresh. The cast was absolutely incredible, I am amazed at the acting and musical talent.  The lighting was fantastic, the theatre cozy,inviting and the sound was very good.  The orchestra was excellent, always in tune and right on the beat.

I have loved the song My Eyes Adored You, for as long as I can remember.  The Four Season’s were popular in the 60’s, a full decade before I was born.  "My Eyes" always takes me back, to where exactly, I’m uncertain.  To someplace simpler, romantic and haunting.

I couldn’t wait for someone’s eyes to look at me adoringly. Fast forward to 2008 and I am lucky enough to be sitting in a threatre, holding hands with the love of my life, as my eyes adore him.

Head over to Randy Elrod’s Ethos Blog for watercooler talk!


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