Learning how to session from a six year old

Going to a session is much like a kid going to a play-date. You hope some of your friends will be there, you wonder if they’ll play anything you know and you pray you remember how to play.

For the holidays my husband, my 6-year old step-daughter and I visited my sister who has 2 kids and who had 2 friends over all under the age of 8. As you can imagine it was a bit chaotic. What was interesting was watching these children get to know each other and work out what they had in common, what they were going to play and who was going to be in charge of the group. Sound familiar?

Some of the kids knew each other beforehand and some didn’t so they had to work quickly at reacquainting themselves and finding out their commonalities. It didn’t take long for them to decide to put on a music concert for the adults, complete with dress-up costumes, instruments and lyrics. They figured out quickly what tune they would play, who else knew it and which one would direct.

All dressed up in pink and purple princess dresses, butterfly wings, plastic high heeled shoes and a battery operated “electric” guitar, one of them screamed “Get ready for the rock concert” and so began the show. As they started wiggling their bodies to the tune of “put your hands in the air,” I realized that there was one leading the performers, one singing and playing the music and one just dancing around like she had ants in her pants. But they all seemed to be working together to create one sound.

Though they weren’t playing anything close to Irish music, it did remind me of what playing music is all about. It’s about having fun. It’s about connecting with someone else and sharing something that makes you feel good. Aside from the fact that it was completely adorable, I was blown away by the courage of these little girls to put on a rock concert complete with costumes and written words that took all of about 1/2 hour to conjure up. They were having so much fun and because they were, so were we.

So the next time you find yourself worrying about what you’re going to play and who is going to be there and whether or not you’ll remember your tunes, remember why you started playing in the first place; because its fun. Stop worrying about whether you’ll sound good or if someone else will know the tune you’re playing, play because you love it, play because you want to share the music. Play because you can.

Happy sessioning!

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