Tag Archives: Power

Music Monday

14 Nov

When was the last time you listened to music?

No, I don’t mean watched a music video on YouTube, but listened to music, without having any visual distractions.

When was the last time you listened to music without knowing anything about its composer/singer?

No, I don’t mean not knowing the latest gossip on Rihanna, but not knowing who the singer is, how well the band is doing in the charts, how many awards they have won, what everyone’s opinion is of them, or even what they look like.

When was the last time you listened to music for the actual pleasure of listening to music?

No, I don’t mean the pleasure of having the hum of the radio as you drive to work; no, not the fun of blasting your favourite songs as you do the cleaning; but sat down and listened to music for the sake of listening to music.

When was the last time you were moved by music?

No, I don’t mean laughing at the latest pop lyrics or being frustrated by the bad grammar in hip hop; but got goose bumps, had your body temperature rise, stood transfixed or even cried from music.

 

When I was a teenager, I bought a Franz Ferdinand album, having seen their name in a magazine. I listened to the album every day and loved the music so much that I soon knew all of the lyrics by heart and even started learning to play their songs on the guitar. I loved their music and listened to it with a passion, but I had no idea who Franz Ferdinand were. I didn’t know how many people were in the band, I didn’t know where they came from, I didn’t know how old they were, I didn’t know how long they’d been around, and I didn’t even know what they looked like. When I went to their gig, I discovered for the first time the people behind the melodies and words.

Nowadays, we watch music videos and often judge songs by the quality of the special effects, the artists’ appearance and their attitude.

We know about the private lives of most artists and such gossip leads us to make judgements on their work.

In most cases, we know what the musician looks like, dresses like and acts like, which evokes certain associations in our mind as we listen to their music.

I recently went to a concert without any prior knowledge of the composer, his life or his music. For the first time in years I closed my eyes and got carried away in my own world while listening to music. I enjoyed the music for the beauty of the music itself.

And this made me realise that listening to music for the music itself is not something we do often nowadays. We listen to a song because it got stuck in our head, or because the singer looks pretty in the video, or because it reminds us of a place/period/person, or because the band is considered cool, or because the album is advertised on all billboards, or because we simply don’t know many other songs.

If you love music, I ask you to take part on a journey of discovery with me.

Every Monday, I will post a song or piece of music that I like. Although there will inevitably be the artist’s name and song’s title, I will post these songs as YouTube videos that contain no moving images. I will give no background information about the song or artist, and will not tell you what I feel or think while listening to the music.

I ask you to close your eyes for three minutes and simply listen to the music that I have posted. Listen to it for the sake of listening to music, for the sake of being moved by music and for the sake of experiencing the world through your ears, not through your eyes.

You may like or hate the songs that I post, but one thing is sure: in closing your eyes and listening to music, a new world will unfold in your mind. It is the world of the imagination. With no videos to tell you how to interpret the sounds, you will construct your own associations and build your own fantasies. The music will have an effect that is personal to you, because it will have spoken to you through the power of your own imagination and emotions.

You are free to research as much or as little about the artist whose music I post, but please only do this after having listened to the song.

Happy listening.

(Don’t forget to close your eyes…)

 

I would love to know what you felt/thought/saw while listening to the song.

And if there are songs or pieces of music you love, please share them with me and other bloggers by posting their title in the comments section. That way, we can all open up our musical horizons together!

Spring is Here!

21 Mar

Spring is in full bloom in my new town (and new country). I am feeling a little disorientated, seeing as I’m used to spring arriving at least a month later. Spring is quite possibly my favourite season, so I am loving the extra month in which I get to enjoy the smell of blooming flowers, the sounds of nesting birds and and the warmth of the approaching summer sun.

These days, I don’t leave the house without my camera; the flora here changes almost daily and I love capturing each stage of nature’s reawakening. Here are a few snaps of spring in my area.

SUPERMOON, Saturday 19 March 2011

19 Mar

On my evening walk last night, I took a mental photo of the sublime moon shining in the dark blue sky. Soft grey clouds floated over it, hiding it from view in the first few minutes of my promenade. Then slowly, they descended, like a silk chemise falling down, revealing an exquisite body underneath. The moon glowed, lighting up the sky around it. I started at it, hypnotised.  With its magnetic force, it drew not only me, but water, earth and air, towards it. Its majestic reign over the evening sky was like a queen’s calm gaze over her devotees. Despite being distant, the moon has strong, but subtle power over us; although it seems disengaged from the world, the moon is completely connected to us. I looked at this mysterious goddess in the sky and, despite knowing that I would never fathom this ethereal creation, I was grateful for being able to appreciate its beauty.


Tonight, 19 March 2011, will be the first “supermoon” – a full moon when it is the closest to the earth – in nineteen years. Be sure to take time to look at the night sky and make the most of this extraordinary event. And if your camera is as good as this one, please send me a photo!