Just Jim, standing over the new Yamaha G-7 at Monte Vista Church.  Photo by Donna Ahrend (that's my sister!).


There are only two ways to live your life.
One is as though nothing is a miracle.
The other is as if everything is.


    ---quote attributed (probably incorrectly) to Albert Einstein (but I like it anyhow)



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In terms of music-making, carpe diem Jim Ahrend  | Dec 2, 2014

This fall has been quite a reminder of the preciousness and fragility of life.  When friend and drummer Stu Sacco failed to show up one Thursday night in October at Monte Vista Fire Station, we sensed something was wrong; but it wasn't till the end of the next day that we found out that Stu had passed in his sleep.  Stu was my age, more or less; a discomforting reality.  How quickly a vibrant music-maker can disappear before our eyes. 


On the weekend that followed, I got news that a young talented singer-actor-director Matt Nageli, with whom I had worked many times in several capacities, died as a result of a car accident in Los Angeles.  Again, it was hard to conceive how quickly this young, super-talent had been simply removed from our sight.


Our own mortality is with us at all times; it never changes.  It is simply our mind-set that makes us forget it for long blocks of time, as if it were simply too heavy to carry, or too much of a nuisance to bother thinking about.


We don't have to think about it all the time, but the older we get, the harder it is to avoid.  Better off making friends with it, and letting that motivate you into living every day as if it were your last.  This sounds cliche to our high-tech-in-control-modern ears, and yet it is as timeless as the sun rising and setting.


Every chance to make music, to create beauty where there was none, is a chance to live fully.  I say, grab every moment.  And while we are at it, let us make the most of our relationships.  Don't wait to tell someone something you really want to tell them.  You never know when it may be too late.  It's true and timeless---every day is a gift.  Be grateful, and carpe Diem y'all.