October 5, 2008

Music and more, with a chess friend

Having been hit by Hurricane Ike, staying with my sister-in-law in Dallas until my electric power would be restored, I was invited by a new chess friend Toby Landes to visit him and his wife in nearby McKinney, Texas. Our mutual friend and chess coach, Chien Ming, in Indonesia, had introduced Toby and me to each other. (It is amazing and wonderful how the Internet can bridge gaps of hundreds and even thousands of miles.) So on that September afternoon I drove to their home. There Toby and I played a game of chess (he won); he, his wife, and I ate supper together. And since Toby plays violin and viola and I play piano, we had a spontaneous music-making session of songs that both of us know by ear. We sounded pretty good. We contacted Chien on the Internet and chatted, even playing a song for Chien and his wife which they heard clearly thousands of miles away by the magic of the Internet. After I left Toby got on his computer and went here to my blog; he composed a lengthy response to my posting "A big problem for me". You can read his comment below. I am very grateful to him for the enjoyable evening and for the time and thought that he put into his comments.

1 comment:

Toby said...

Ed mentioned that we played music together. I would like to comment on how amazed I was with his musical ability. Over the years I have played with many people, but none who had such a repertoire and played each one with such precision. I could not name a tune that he did not know. And the ones that we played at my suggestion... he knew them better (more accurately) than I did.

After our visit, he sent me four CDs of recordings he has made in the past. Some of them are Sousa marches. It is absolutely uncanny how detailed his performance is and how accurately he has transcribed these pieces for piano, even down to the piccolo solos.