In the Hands
Paul Cantrell’s music
blog & podcast
Piano music old and new from a devoted amateur,
all free to listen to, download, and share.

Song of Keys Please = successful!

Last night’s concert was a delight to play in — and the audience tells us they had a good time as well. My third ballade was a bit fudgy, but got enthusiastic comments nonetheless. And people surpised me by also really liking the Dance for Remembering and Forgetting and especially the Entropic Waltz. It seems that the sensual surface of the first and the humor and recklessness of the second won out over the strangeness of the music. Say what you will about the Lone Artist maintaining the Integrity of their Vision in the face of an Unforgiving Society — it’s always gratifying when people actually like what I do!

I was actually feeling kind of discouraged about the completely lackluster, conversation-stopping, everyone-stares-at-their-shoes-and-shuffles-uncomfortably response to my request for suggestions on keeping In the Hands going. (Three days after that post, I have one donation and zero reader comments.) A successful performance was a tonic for my spirits. A second tonic came last night from Leslie Ball, who asked me to play accordion at Balls Cabaret on the spur of the moment. I said with minor distress that I didn’t know what I would play, and she said, “Oh, Paul, everything you do is beautiful!” Well…shucks. I don’t think that’s actually true, but it’s just about the nicest thing you could say to a performer. (I’ll provide a future aside at some point about how the word “beautiful” to me encompasses a far greater range of experiences than “pretty.”) What a good soul she is!

All of this was made ten times sweeter by the fact that my parents were here to visit from Colorado for the weekend. They are the very best of all for putting me in good spirits, for reminding me just what it is I generally mean to do by living! Oh, I’d best pull myself in, lest I have to start a third blog dedicated entirely to gushing about them! But I’m sure all the people who spent time with them this weekend would agree: there would be plenty of material for that.

Sorry for the lack of a recording this weekend. I’ll be back on the bus next Tuesday.


Kendall Helmstetter Gelner

I have also donated as I would like to keep this going as long as possible… I guess the only idea I would offer to help would be to somehow expand the reach of the site. How to do that, I am not sure… to reach the point of self-sustainability is indeed quite tricky.

Kendall Helmstetter Gelner