Read Part 2
By early 2014 I was playing my trombone again regularly, and I was starting to compose for band and orchestra again. I began playing with the Mansfield Wind Symphony, where I continue to play today as well as serve on the board of directors. (I have to put in a plug for the Mansfield Wind Symphony here. We are an outstanding community band committed to growing music and the arts in the Mansfield, Texas area.) That feeling of truly belonging in music as a composer as well as a player that had started in 2013 was more fully flourishing now.
In February 2014 I found out about a composition contest put on by Hans Zimmer, the famous movie music composer (Interstellar, Inception, The Dark Knight, Pirates of the Caribbean, and many others). At first, I wasn't going to enter the contest. Though it sounded cool (the winners would get to go to Hollywood to study with Zimmer), I felt like I didn't have time to put together a decent composition in time for the deadline.
I was working 60+ hours a week on an IT project, and I was trying to maintain connection with my family at home. Yet, something kept telling me I needed to enter the contest.
The night before the composition was due, I finished a work project around 10:00 pm. I was tired and ready for bed. But, my son Josh had expressed interest in playing a guitar solo if I composed something, and I was having this nagging feeling that I needed to enter the contest no matter how good the quality was.
I decided to go for it. I stayed up all night and wrote a piece of music to enter in the competition (you can hear it here: https://soundcloud.com/leeharbaugh/leeharbaugh-bleedingfingers-1 ). Although I didn't expect to win, I had a sense that something was going to come out of the competition for me. I even wrote about it in my journal (because the feelings really felt a little kooky at the time) in case anything did come of it.
The competition ended, and I didn't hear anything from anyone. After a few months or so, I chalked my feelings up to wishful thinking on my part, and I put those notions away on a shelf. Then, about a year later, other strange "feelings" began emerge.
As always, I look forward to your comments and feedback!