Monday, February 28, 2011

My Piano

My first big purchase was not a car - it was this piano. I was in college and saw an add for a piano sale at another college in town. This piano was in a teacher's studio for ten years, and was spared the abuse of the college practice rooms. It was kept in tune, and was used sparingly during vocal lessons. When I married Troy and we moved up to Minneapolis we left it with my folks because we weren't sure that we would have room for it (and Troy didn't want to move it up stairs). But a few emotional meltdowns into our marriage, and we both realized the therapeutic role songwriting played in my life. We took a special trip to Springfield, MO in Troy's Dad's truck, wrapped the piano in blue tarps and bungee cords, and brought it back to MN. I started in right away, writing Everyday Miracles, Awakening, and Glory Come Down the first month I had it back, and I have written every album since then on this piano. It has a sweet, moody, melancholy sound, and is as much a part of my voice as my voice. It is an emotional instrument. I am writing now for a new record, feeling that old compulsion, coaxing out new melodies, grateful for my longtime friend.

27 comments:

  1. This is beautiful. And the piano is blessed to have found its way to you.

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  2. I feel the same about my piano...it's so therapeutic for me to sit and play and sing.

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  3. I am grateful for your piano, too ... because it is such a beautiful ministry to my heart through you! :) Your music blesses me.

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  4. I'm not a creator at my piano, but it is definitely cathartic. Sometimes I wonder if my kids can read my moods based on what I play. My motto as a still-too-impatient mother should be, "if I can't say something nice (edifying?), go play the piano."

    Thanks for creating and writing with this instrument; I reap the benefits as I sit down with your songbooks. I almost always end by singing "He's always been faithful".

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  6. Hey Sara! I love keeping up with your blog! We are so excited to come to your concert at our home church, Stonebriar, in April! We'd love to open our home to you if you need a place to stay. Blessings to you, Troy and your kids!

    Carley Stevenson
    carleystevenson@yahoo.com

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  7. My piano and music is how I communicate the most meaningful parts of me to my family and friends; the things I can't really say in a conversation. It's how I rejoice when I'm too happy to speak, and how I cry when I'm so overwhelmed that I can't put my thoughts into any coherent sentences. I hope there will always be a piano in my life.

    I look foward to the next album you've got coming. Your music has been such a huge influence on me. Blessings to you and your family!

    Love,
    ~Meg S.

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  8. Blessed beyond words by you this weekend. Praying for His words to come through you as you work on this new record, and can't wait for Him to speak to me through you!
    Love to you!
    Faith Higdon

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  9. Sara - it's Aaron Sternke. Love this post. I just bought a beautiful, old upright piano for my place...

    Did you use this on "Fireflies"? Whatever the piano sound is on that record... It is really great. All the best to you guys!

    A

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  10. Hi Sara!! I love the angle of the piano picture!:o) Thanks for sharing about where you write your music. I eagerly await the arrival of your next creation!:o)

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  11. that's a beautiful story! thank you for sharing :)

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  12. What a lovely post! Isn't it amazing how much we all need an outlet and we can end up feeling so lost without it?

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  13. Beautiful simple things that cause constant inspiration to make beautiful complex world-changing things. Love it.

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  14. thanks for sharing this, something so close to you, your writing, your life. Now with every song, I'm going to envision this piano!

    (PS - my friend Curtis and I- he on keys, me on guitar- played 'when the saints' for the opening of our missions weekend at church this weekend. Thanks for the gift of this song... it is bearing fruit in the lives of the people of Memphis, TN.)

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  15. Hi Sara! I love how music has been a ministry to you and through you! I know you get ALOT of notes and I don't expect a reply. But I wanted to tell you that your music has ministered to me in a very deep way this past year. We found out at my 20 wk ultrasound that I was pregnant with a little girl who would likely die shortly after birth. And now she is 9 months old! There has been alot of sadness, and sometimes there seems to be no end of it, but there has also been much beauty. One song that we are planning to use at her memorial service is "Prayers for this Child". Do I have your permission to do this?:)
    I am so excited to hear that you are still writing. I pray that God will minister to you as you write and play your ‘longtime friend’!!
    Holding on to the Heart of God,
    Kendra Funk
    www.rachelamariah.blogspot.com

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  16. Just discovered your blog, Sara. This is the first post I read. Beautiful!

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  17. Sara, we just were given a piano from some friends of FCA who didn't want it anymore - an old upright, not in great condition, but not bad either. I'm so excited to give our kids the opportunity to have music in our house. Sarah (7) sits down and creates beautiful music already. Now I need to get them some lessons...
    I've enjoyed following you through the years. They've been good to you. Glad you are doing well.
    Anne Bickle

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  18. I think Awakening is one of your most powerful songs.. my eyes well up every time I hear it. It's a beautiful song.

    And I'm so excited to hear you're writing for a new album!

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  19. eagerly anticipate what is wrought in your soul for this next album :) what a wonderful post and tribute to your "friend"!

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  20. Great post. Can't wait for the new album. It's all so good. We have a Sara Groves iPod on at our house, all Sara Groves all the time. It's great stuff and it never gets old. Can't wait to hear you guys at Stonebriar in April. We're trying to bring all of our friends. It's going to be a great time. Praying for you as you seek the Spirit's lead in songwriting for this new album.

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  21. What a wonderfully fitting first purchase for you. I remember watching you play the piano @ Central when we were girls and was in awe that you played so well back then. It's so amazing the gifts that God gave us to pull us through life. Do you have any idea where Sebrena Morris ended up?
    Your old friend from children's choir/Missionettes,
    Debbie Chambers/Deborah Swaar

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  22. Hi Sara! I know nothing about pianos but can I just say how grateful I am that you do? As I write this, "The Long Defeat" began to play on my Shuffle. Your music sounds like my soul feels. I can't put into words how encouraged I am to press in and press on to a deeper love for my Savior. Thank you a million times over!

    Katharine Rothaar
    Maple Grove, MN

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  23. Hi Sara!

    I'm grateful for those "few emotional meltdowns" that helped bring your piano home.

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  24. God obviously wanted you two together...and He most definitely knew what He was doing...the both of you have sinced blessed the world.
    xo J~

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  25. After mom died I got the piano I grew up playing. The same one my great-grandmother brought for $5 off someone's curb (they were throwing it away!!). It too has a rich tone that is like none other! It also has been played by 4 generations of members of my family. Thus PRICELESS!!

    Love your music...and singing by your side since grade school at Fairview Elementary and Central Assembly days when your Mom led the children's choirs! (She was also the BEST piano teacher in the world!!)

    Big hugs!
    Libby (Kleeman) Jordan

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  26. What a beautiful story--nothing like that comfortable "thing" that stirs your creative soul. Still loving your music and message after all these years! Come back down to Athens soon!

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