Paintings, Jazz, Dance, Conga Drums and “The Beat”

"Feelin' the Beat", Acrylic, 12" x 12", Karen Gillis Taylor, 2014

“Feelin’ the Beat”, Acrylic, 12″ x 12″, Karen Gillis Taylor, 2014. click for larger view.

This painting is about music. I really love many kinds of music. My brother Bob Gillis is a professional jazz musician, and got me interested in jazz a long time ago. (My favorite guy, RT, loves jazz too, and used to play trumpet, then guitar and piano.)

I have my own conga drums! Now that I am back to painting and working at my home studio full-time, I’ve found an online class to get me going again. The sounds of the drums mesmerize me.

I used to take dance classes for many years, as a young person, and that is how I learned “the beat.” You can’t dance tap, or jazz dance unless you can keep the beat, with your own dance movements. I loved it and still do to this day!

Anyone can find their first “beat” to get their body in motion and then find a simple dance. That is folk dance in all the world still going today. It keeps us going across cultures to dance with each other. It is one of the gifts we humans can seek out, stumble upon, and just find now and then. Maybe at a wedding? A great place to start.

These are my drums, pic below. (And Mimi, the cat.) I’m bringing them up to my studio tomorrow, so I can play them during my painting breaks. Much needed breaks!

Music and painting go together, but so do music and dance. They are all part of the artist’s life, and I enjoy them all. You don’t have to be a really talented person to dance with the rhythm. You can just take your break from painting, step in time and listen to the beat. What a wonderful break in your day to refill your soul.

One of my online friends is so loving her tango lessons. That is such a superbly interesting dance! On my wish list to learn.

Do you have a wish list for music lessons or dance? Please tell me about it. It makes me happy when you share.


Congas with Mimi the cat

Congas with Mimi the cat



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