emily remler

Last Call: Close Your Eyes, Be Transported
From left to right, Travis Bettis, Paul Rippee, Lee Brice, and John Bohlinger close their eyes and channel the spirits of music while on tour in 2018. Photo by Chase Lauer

Put on the blinders, focus inward, and tap into the moment.

“Music is the mediator between the life of the senses and the life of the spirit." —Ludwig van Beethoven

During some mindless YouTube-ry, I happened upon John Mayer's “Slow Dancing in a Burning Room" performance on Live on Letterman from 2013. Mayer's solo seemed genuinely moving, like a let's-just-see-where-the-spirit-takes-it kind of improv. I've played Letterman but never had that kind of performance. I hit the right-ish notes at the right time, but it felt stiff, self-conscious, safe, and boring.

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