Sunday, September 13, 2009

Being "All In"


Jim Donovan playing w/ Rusted Root @ 1992 Great Blue Heron Music Festival


Being "All In"
by Jim Donovan

Sometimes strange, seemingly unrelated occurrences connect important ideas together for me.

Case in point:

I was driving home last night after a workshop, it was late and I needed something not caffeinated to help me stay awake. I stumbled onto a station cranking an 80s' metal song called "Last in Line" by Ronnie James Dio...
(Yes I am a child of the Eighties and I have the old sleeveless T shirts to prove it.)

As I listened to him sing it suddenly dawned upon me why I like his singing so much.

When he sings, Dio holds nothing back.
When he recorded that tune he was ALL IN.

As I considered my "realization", I found that all of my favorite artists as well as the people I most enjoy being around share this quality. When I'm teaching, playing drums, or playing with my kids I know from experience that the best stuff happens when I'm ALL IN.

That thought made me curious....
and so
I am interested to know who inspires you by being "ALL IN".

For neatness sake make your response(s) in this kind of format:

"When Dio sung "Last in Line" he was ALL IN."
or
"When Steeler wide receiver Santonio Holmes caught that touchdown pass in the Superbowl he (and his feet) were ALL IN."

Leave it to 80's hair metal to teach me something this important...

20 comments:

  1. "When I gave birth to our 2nd daughter at home, I was ALL IN"

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  2. When I'm at the top of a big class IV rapid in my kayak, I'm ALL IN.

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  3. When I'm at the top of a class IV rapid in my kayak, I'm ALL IN

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  4. Bono singing "BAD" at first Live Aid

    Martin Luther King "I have a dream speech"

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  5. When Bobby McFerrin spontaneously began vocally improvising over my rhythms on a slit drum at an Omega Institute picnic table back in 1986, I was ALL IN

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  6. Being present at a Stones Rising ceremony at Four Quarters (www.4qf.org) and focusing all our energy on the stone being raised, each person is "All In" including the witnesses, singers, food servers, rope pullers, stone crew, children, elders, healers, and drummers.

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  7. MY FIRST VIEW OF THE SNOW PEAK GLACIERS OF THE HIMALAYAS ON MY WAY TO KASMIER....I WAS ALL IN......

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  8. When I dance and others feed off my energy, I'm ALL IN!

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  9. Improvising with musicians like Muruga, Badal Roy and Perry Robinson, I am ALL IN and it's WAY OUT. 100% committment to the moment.

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  10. As I wait patiently for the next big storm and the huge waves that come with it I ponder.. why do I do this? Why do I put myself in harms way? Its hard enough to punch out through the big surf to get on the other side with my custom wave ski. (surf kayak) I have to maneuver myself in the right spot to get ready. When time and space conspire and I throw everything I have into the first three strokes I find myself lifted as if by a demon..up up as I start to shoot down the wave face and gain speed. I have to pay complete attention and use all my skills to get into that tiny groove of incredible speed and power. The thrill is indescribable. I'm doing this! I know it can only really be experienced to be known. That intersection of being completely present at the peak of my skill and awareness while feeling that thrill of physicality. .... Well.. I am ALL IN.
    Curious what this looks like?
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NM2xo0UCVP8
    David

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  11. That last weekend I took too much ... I had no choice but to be ALL IN

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  12. Don't worry about saving these songs! And if one of our instruments breaks, it doesn't matter. We have fallen into the place where everything is music.

    - taken from Rumi poem Everything is Music

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  13. Riding on a freshly groomed snowmobile trail! with my 800cc snopro, Um ALL IN.

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  14. When I am by myself in the forest next to a fire and I am high and drumming under a full moon... I am ALL IN!

    When I am teaching a class and they depend on me to make the past come alive and provide accurate knowledge... I am ALL IN!

    When I am spending time with my family and my two year old son, and he depends on me to make every moment engaging, enchanting and educational... I am ALL IN! (and just a little exhausted)

    Jim - That tip you gave months ago about breathing when drumming being all about the size of the opening was a ripper. In use almost everyday - Thanks

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  15. So glad you are using it. That technique has changed my playing too.

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  16. Certain Rock Musicians are all in or have had moments of ALL IN. What comes to mind for me is Pink Floyd-Eclipse, Lennon-Imagine, Plant-Kashmir, U2-Pride

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  17. When my Gram cooked for us, she was ALL IN.

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  18. When last night's dream fuels the creative fires for today's writing, I am ALL IN!

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  19. When I'm playing a really competitive game of racquetball, I'm all in

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