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10 Musical Adventures To Enjoy Before Summer Ends – And They’re Free!

Let’s talk summer vacation for your music! No, not taking a break, exactly. I’d like to invite you to put some of that adventurous vacation spirit into your music-making this coming month.

I want you to take some time to stretch yourself, without worrying about extra practice or wrong notes or fixing your technique. I want you to find new ways to explore and enjoy making music. And I think now is the perfect time. (Even if you’re reading this blog months after I’m writing it, this moment you’re in right now – whenever it happens to be – is the perfect time.)

If you’ve never tried this before, you will be amazed at how much fun it is. None of the suggestions below cost anything (except for possibly #10), and 2 of them don’t even involve any playing. But they will all stretch your creativity and help you explore your music in a new way.

Focus on your favorite one or choose a different one to do each week. And if you like, share your adventures in the comments below.

  1. Go on a World Tour. Choose one country or part of the world. Play music from that country each day for a week. Add to the ambience by surrounding yourself with scenic pictures or handicrafts. You could even wear folk garb or read a travel book to add to the immersion experience.

  2. Have an impromptu “porch concert.” Take your harp out onto your front porch or back deck (if the weather permits), and play for 15 minutes. Let your music blend with the sounds of the world around you: the birds, the people, the cars, the rustle of leaves, whatever your world is like from your porch.

  3. Set your favorite story to music. Choose some of your favorite pieces that suit different elements in the story, add a little improvisation and some sound effects. Then tell your story or ask a friend to read it while you play the “soundtrack” live, just for fun.

  4. Break out of your practice space. Take your harp to a big church or auditorium just to experience the feel of playing in a big space. You don’t need an audience for this; in fact, it’s better if you’re on your own. One quick phone call should be enough to set it up.

  5. Create a meditation soundtrack. Choose a few favorite easy pieces that have a tranquil mood. Play them for yourself just to create some relaxation time. Create even better karma by recording them and sharing your soundtrack with a friend.

  6. Go on a “photo shoot.” Take a friend who is willing to be your photographer, pack up your harp, and go to a scenic spot for your private harp photo shoot. Have your friend take a few pictures of you with your harp. If your friend is a harpist, you can return the favor and take pictures of your friend too. Don’t forget to wear something glamorous!

  7. Set your vacation memories to music. Pull out some of those old vacation photos – yes, the ones you have in albums somewhere! Choose a photo, one that makes you smile to remember the good times you had. Then play a piece of music that seems meaningful or appropriate to you, or try a little improvisation.

  8. Summer reading homework. What are you reading this summer? Here’s a little musical “homework” to go with it: If one of the characters in your book played the harp, which character would it be and what music would they like to play? Then you go and play that music. Get in character with a costume, if you feel like it!

  9. High adventure time! It’s time to break out of your comfort zone. Have you been reluctant to post a video of you playing the harp on your social media? Have you been afraid to even record yourself playing? Now is the time! A fifteen second video is enough. Make the video with your cell phone; don’t worry about the video quality and don’t do extra “takes.”  Do it once or maybe twice and then hit “send.” Just do it – and then relax with some lemonade.

  10. Have a spa day. Treat your harp to a spa day – replace worn strings, polish it, make an appointment for a regulation. Then treat yourself to a spa day too. You deserve it!

That’s my list. Now tell me - which one will you try first???


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