Friday, May 13, 2011

Evocative Music or Not

"Music jerks you around to feel stuff 
you could better have left alone."

That quote comes from a good friend of mine. She said it sometime last year and like a diligent writer I jotted the words down for later use. Our conversation didn't stop with that line, she went on to say that feeling big emotions was just not worth it because the really bad ones are very painful even when evoked or relived via music. And, she continued, the good emotions that music pulls forth always end when the music ends and you lose them all over again.

Yes, that is a fairly dark view of music and perhaps of the world in general. It contrasts sharply with my own feelings about music and my personal worldview. Remembering even reliving long ago emotions is not only healthy; I believe it is healing and growth oriented. Yes, music can recall old hurts and stir dormant memories but catharsis is good for the soul. Stirring the pot brings all the flavors of wisdom to bear on our place in the present.

I let my friend know I was going to post this blog because I wanted to hear her say it out loud -

"You know I've started listening to music again."

Yes I did notice, which is how I knew it was time to share this nugget with my blog friends.


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mira amiras said...

You know, I've started listening to music again. And again. And again. And again. The same piece — every frakking night — obligated for a year and day. A piece I couldn't stand.

And she's playing the piece every single night afresh. And every single day it's different. And it makes me see stuff, and feel stuff, and feel stuff that isn't my stuff at all.

It's an excellent exercise in something akin to remote viewing. I can feel what she feels when she plays the piece.

I think music needs practice not just in the playing but in the listening. Like learning a new grammar or a new language.

And the more you know, the less the music can really hurt you...

Erin Vang said...

And perhaps hardest of all to explain is how the listener, through listening, has changed the way I play the music.

Erin Vang said...

And perhaps the strangest thing about this is that the listener, through listening, has changed how I hear and play this music.