It amazes me what some people have gone through in order to play music, and it makes me realize (once again) that the passion and drive to have music in one’s life is more powerful than more paltry things like knowledge of how to practice. One researcher whose name slips me at the moment, calls it “the rage to master.” It seems as though being deaf might be the greatest challenge–possibly insurmountable–to overcome if one wants to make music because you have to have hearing to make music, right? Wrong.
The first deaf musician who comes to mind is Evelyn Glennie, award-winning percussionist. Here’s a fantastic talk she did on listening at a TED conference:
Want to learn more about the best ways to practice? Get an e-mail with a discount code when The Practice of Practice is published (June, 2014). To learn more about the book, check out a sample from The Practice of Practice.
And then consider Patrick, a guy who lost his hearing and still wanted (needed?) to play, so he rested his teeth (yes, his teeth!) on his guitar so the vibrations would travel through his skull to help him hear better. This one is a long vid, but if you skip to 6:40, the nurse/technician tells him how the hearing implant bolted to his skull works.Then at around 24:30 Patrick plays his guitar and for the first time in over ten years he’s able to hear it without using his teeth. Awesome! I hope these inspire you even half as much as they inspired me.