Wednesday, March 23, 2016

"Take Five..."

Take Five!... and come "tip-toe thru, my Easter tulips... with me!"

In day-to-day usage in the English language, the phrase "take five" idiomatically suggests taking a short break from any activity. In the world of jazz music it can suggest a similar break as well. However, it can also suggest increasing the standard 4/4 meter, from four beats to the bar, or measure to five beats. This time signature is commonly called quintuple time.

Whether or not you are a jazz aficionado or not, you will likely recognize the Dave Brubeck Quartet's all-time best-selling jazz single "Take Five" from 1959 (written by group alto saxophonist Paul Desmond) which makes use of this quintuple meter. It was the theme song for NBC for many years and played many times daily, thus ingraining it into the America fabric of society. It has been used creatively and successfully as a "cover" by many recording artists right up to the present time,  retaining its rightful place as a jazz classic.

"Take Five..."

"Take five"... for me lately, has been a break away from my easel to take care of necessary business in preparation for our quickly-approaching May opening. Much still remains to be accomplished to be fully ready for that event. Our season is a very short six month window... when tourists come to the Thousand Island region en masse.

Like the Canada Geese visitors are active... and often too noisily present during this short period of time. But usual custom dictates that both take flight and disappear almost simultaneously... and the village goes suddenly to sleep for the long winter months.

I decided to loosen up  and keep my palette completing a smallish oil... knowing that by accomplishing this task, I would be taking care of business and quenching my increasing artistic thirst with this one small creative act. I must confess that I find the smaller oils a bit constricting and less enjoyable than the big brush painting formats, or the plein air outings... but time was the deciding factor. Here is the result produced. This small painting was my "take five"... from the business-oriented tasking... and it was indeed refreshing!.. Can you feel my joy?

"October Opus on Stone Street, Gananoque" - oil on gessoed masonite panel 7x5 inches

Music has been such a constant... a friend on my entire journey. I have many to thank for this gift of music... but none more than my Mom and Dad. Music was always present in our home... in many genres and with many instruments, including the willing family voices to make that music.

With Easter celebrations on the horizon for us this weekend... our family will circle up on Good Friday here at Islesview to share the Easter Blessing of being together. My Mom and Dad's presence will be indeed felt... as if they were still at the table. This was a tradition which they created. We learned the importance of maintaining the "family gathering". Together as a family... we will "take five" from our busy and separate lives.

Thank you both... Mom and Dad... For the Music!!!

                               "Thank You... For the Music" - oil on canvas 14 x 11 inches
                                                        GIFTED to Andrew Sherman

Whatever your faith, or spiritual underpinnings... one need only look to those recent events in Brussels to realize that despite our own perceived trials and tribulations, there exist those in other parts of the world less fortunate than ourselves at this time. I feel required to remember their plight and to add them to my own thoughts and prayers.

Let us all "Take five"... and give silently give thanks for the many seemingly small, yet rich blessings that we receive daily.

Resurrection in Rockport... and yes... we do expect to have this much snow by Good Friday. Do remember this quiet offering of sacrifice...

I would like to close out today's post with another piece of music from any other genre that I subscribe to daily. I can honestly say that this particular piece is likely my favorite piece of music. I listen to it... whenever the world seems unfair... or that life has deserted me. I listen to it ... whenever I really need to... "take five". Enjoy!

Happy Easter!... and Good Painting... to ALL!!!


  1. Happy Easter, Happy Spring, Bruce! We are all in this together, whether we want to believe that or not. We must stop thinking as other human beings as "them" and all those who think and act like ourselves as "us" for the beautiful harmony of life to be fulfilled. Wishing you a wonderful May opening and please be a good neighbor and keep all that snow up there with you! ha ha

  2. Happy Easter and Spring back to you Rhonda!

    The weather is really Topsy-turvy this morning... freezing rain and snow on the Easter menu planned by the weather gods. Nothing to do... but get on with it!

    We are busy in the studio as we speak... so let it blow... let it snow... whatever!

    It is comforting to know that some folks share the belief that there is an "Us-World" possible. The alternative thinking and actions bring me great despair!

    "We"... are greatly blessed - free to think and act as we wish!

    Good Painting and print making!

    Warmest regards,