Grated Cheese

Sometimes its Brie, sometimes its Kraft, either way its still cheese.

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

How many ways can you spend all your money?

So the other day, my parents asked me what I wanted for my birthday which really is quite a simple question, yet so very hard to answer.

There are so many ways that I currently want to spend all my money it hurts.
  • Things such as a Apple Powerbook, or a Mini or both
  • An iPod, one of the new 30Gb Video ones with the bigger screens, in Black.
  • A compact digital camera plus a huge memory card.
  • A piano, something I will touch on later.
  • A desktop PC upgrade, its gonna need to be a big one, I want to play Quake 4 and F.E.A.R.
  • A second TFT, matching my current one.
  • Millions of DVDs, CDs and Books (including lots of cult, classic and just plain bizarre ones)

Currently of the above list, I think I want the piano the most, which is kind of strange really.
When I was younger, my parents made me have piano lessons, which meant I had to practice, had to learn these stupid tunes that I didn't care for and learn all this weird Latin theory stuff.
So as soon as they let me, I quit. Now I didn't really play the piano again for quite a long time, mostly because I couldn't stand the sight of it. But over the last 2-3 years, it has been something I have kind of turned back to, not playing anything overly properly or accurately, just putting on the headphones and bashing keys.
Making up tunes, "discovering" chords and sequences, working out songs by ear, its all quite theraputic really, similar to how/why I play the guitar. Not forced to do it, don't have to practice for anyone, I can play what I want to play and generally have fun with it.
Now being at uni means that I have problems getting all my junk in my room, and this semester I didn't bring back any guitars as I didn't think I would have room. I was pretty much right, but I think it possibly would have been a good idea to have had them anyway as I miss it.
Sorry, got all a bit nostalgic (thats probably the wrong word but I can't think of the right one)
What I also miss is having open access to a piano at nearly anytime that I wanted to. Now being at a slightly less academic and more practical university (NOTE: now called Anglia Ruskin University) we have a HUGE music department, which just got itself a whole new block just for the practice rooms, with lots of nice shiny upright pianos. This is good news you would think, but NOOOOOO, only music students have access to said rooms, and no-one else is allowed in. HOW MUCH DOES THAT STINK!!!!
So anyway, I was looking into getting a piano for myself, but they are a bit expensive really. £300 upwards for an 88 weighted keys jobbie. (Picky I know, but I don't like the cheap non-weighted keyboards from argos) But then I had a brainwave of an idea.
Why not get a big midi controller, a la this, and use my PC to provide the piano sound. They are about half the price! Fantastic. They say "semi-weighted keys" and I am gonna go into town tomorrow to try to find out if there is any playing difference between that and fully weighted keys.
There are very few drawbacks to this senario, one of which (and probably the biggest) is that I would have to have a PC on and something like a VST host (see related link for a real nifty standalone one) in order to play, but considering my PC is on pretty much all the time I don't see that as too much of a problem. The other is if ever I want to go and play a gig or something, I would have to take loads of extra stuff, but this isn't a concern really as I am not good enough for that.

*plonk* I have just completely lost my train of thought. *re-reads* Yeah, I want a piano but can't afford to spend the money. Thats about all there is to that point really.

On a quick closing note, my mate Joe Benn has just joined in the blogging society that is, and you can read is few words here.

G.night all


At 2:43 am, Blogger Liz said...


Forced to play piano between 7 and 12 - did up to Grade 7. Then decided I really hated it, stopped, and didn't play for a year.

Thankfully, however, I randomly decided one day to sit down and work out a few pieces. This led to me falling in love once more and - at 14 - returning to take Grade 7. I then realised I still hated being forced to paly certain pieces, so stoppe dlessons again, and proceeded to become obsessed on my own!

Now have a propah upright and 61 key keyboard and play every day I can.

doing it on your own rocks :)

At 5:48 am, Blogger Steveybabe said...

Hmm... not so sure about the midi solution. I know i don't really play the piano but I am a real purist when it comes to sound generation. I really don't think a PC even with half decent speakers could match up enough to pure piano vibes. I love the mechanical energy that's generated and its hard to replicate that on a pc!

However, if the midi solution means you get to play half decent stuff for cheap then i'd say it'd be worth it - just to keep yourself well oiled until you have enough dosh for a nice big jolly one!


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