Friday, January 25, 2013

Life With Tourettes: Facing the Music

Hello my name is Ricky Young and I am addicted to making music. Ever since I was little I've always been ring to make music some way. And I was never just trying to buy my own instruments... I was usually too broke... no I was always trying to make my own instruments.  My parents were always pulling their hair out when I would come home and tell them that I found a new idea to explore. When I found Stomp I was banging on my trash can for four weeks. When I discovered jug band music I tried to buy a washboard and blew into a milk jug trying to get some sound out.

But it my love of music comes more from a sense of rebellion than anything else. For years I tried to pick up the piano, guitar, and other instruments. But every time I tried my Tourettes would get in the way. I'd keep hitting this brick wall where I couldn't get my hands doing two things at the same time. I would save up so much money to buy a new instrument at the pawn shop and then fail hopelessly at trying to get it. I would read every music theory book I could find and I could tell you most of the academic parts of the music. But I couldn't get my fingers to do the job that everyone else could.

But then I found blues and jazz. I believe that different styles of music are little Rosetta Stones. When someone finds the right style of music it almost becomes as if they've been playing it their entire life. It started with the harmonica. The minute I first started to try some licks out on it it seemed like I was speaking a language that I had forgotten for so long. And listening to jazz unlocks my Tourettes and purges me of so much bad energy.

Now I make my own string instruments and play cigar box guitar and five-string guitar. I can even play some blues piano. I've performed in front of people and am even trying to find ways to put my music into my performances and art. I never took a lesson playing blues or my blue instruments other than watching some youtube videos. Blues is musical Tourettes. I just let it loose on the fret board and it goes crazy. Ever since then music has been my only way to soothe the savage beast inside.

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