Friday

Sugar Drinks in the Heavy Music

There are two sides to most of us. Usually one side is the side we project, and the other side is the one our friends know about. Case in point: 

Until I got rid of all my farm machinery, a young lad from Spokane would come out to our place. He made at least a dozen weekend stays with us. Why? That’s a good question. His folks have a special room where a large harp-shaped piano stands alone in memory of music, and a violin is there to encourage this future protege, Billy Thulean, to pick it up and make some music, if his spirit so dictates. Keen environment. 

What did Billy-boy rather do? Come out to our place and learn how to operate farm equipment. All I have to offer him, since I retired, is two part-time robins and a couple of chipmunks that decided not to have any more babies. 

His father, Donald Thulean, loves children of every size and shape. Truly a humanist. I remember one time during a discussion at church, Don told how he, as a young music student, was broken hearted when he learned that his hero, Albert Schweitzer, figured a black person was not quite equal to us whites. 

Don also has two sides. On one side, he is an individualist, close to nature, and loves lots of body exposure during the warm weather. After a longwinded concert, he drops his tail suit and puts on something comfortable. Don encouraged me to hold my own with the shirtless scuffle I had in Davenport and up at Expo in Spokane a few years ago. He is also a health nut. 

I’m lending an ear to Don’s other side, as time passes; although Sugar drinks in the heavy music with more thirst than I do. Yet, it is sort of a thrill to see the opera house stage crammed tight with musicians. Some sawing on their large, and/[or] small violins. A lot of them are busy blowing into twisted horns, tweedlers, etc. All making music at the same time, to a tune of something that’s been concocted ages ago. 

Don Thulean is a great conductor and is not afraid to tackle something new or different. A little over three weeks ago, he conducted an excellent and novel arrangement called “The Planets.” All this exposure is a far cry from the days when I used to hum “Home On The Range” and “Red River Valley” out on the tractor. 

"We All Have Two Sides" Kik-Backs, p. 57

Donald Thulean



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