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Pursuing Music in Badajoz
Writing this post makes me so happy. As I listen to the music I managed to record with my lovely ensemble-mates, I am so proud of the result of what we’ve created. Going to my guitar band/ensemble practice every Tuesday in Badajoz is really one of the highlights of my week.
Every Tuesday, I walk to my music center located in the center of the city, and almost every single Tuesday without fail, I call my parents on the way there and back to either tell them how excited I am to go or how satisfied I felt leaving the session. I always wanted to sign up for some sort of music-related activity in Spain, and given I come with guitar experience, I initially wanted to sign up for Spanish guitar lessons. Laura (my host mom) discovered this music center from her students (given she is a teacher at a local school). I remember telling her that I wanted to start in March, yet I was hesitant to sign up in March. It was a Monday when Laura dragged me to the center (quite literally). She asked me to come with her to drop off the girls at their ballet class and take advantage of the time we had in the center of the city to visit the music center and sign up. I was more rattled by the fact that everything would be in Spanish and I tried to push it back another week, but I’m so glad Laura made me sign up that day itself. I ended up joining the class the very next day, and to my pleasant surprise, my teacher Áron is from Hungary and speaks English perfectly.
The sessions are obviously conducted in Spanish, but Áron always explains whatever I don’t understand in English. My group-mates are so incredibly helpful, and they were so willing to record a couple songs from one of our sessions for my blog. Sara, the main singer, has such a beautiful voice, and she sings only in Spanish (as she always tells me when I talk about English music!). We have three guitar players, a base player, a drums player, and a pianist. Áron practically plays every instrument, although he is originally and professionally a drummer (who used to play for a Hungarian rock band!). He was also an exchange student in Spain, which endears my conversations with him even more to me because I know he can actually understand my perspective more often than not.
Every class, we sing about five to seven songs and perform them as a group with everyone involved. The songs are usually hits in Spanish, although there have been a couple selections in English. Two of my most favorite songs we’ve played have been by the group Camela and the singer Melendi. The song I have linked below is by the singer Melendi. I play the guitar intro in the beginning (I apologize for the lack of the sound), and Sara sings the delightful tune. Áron plays the cajón (the wooden box instrument that serves as a drum of sorts). Noa plays the drums, while Dani plays the bass (he’s hidden behind Sara); there’s also three of us on the guitar.
I so incredibly enjoy going to these music sessions/classes, and we have our first concert this Sunday. This class has not only given me something to look forward to during the week, but I have also discovered many cool Spanish songs. Thank you to everyone here for collaborating with me and helping me make this video. I am really excited to grow with all of you in the short time we have left, and I know I’ll look back at these music sessions fondly in the future.