What shall I be positive about today? Good music. After last week’s unfortunate slog I decided that I absolutely had to start this week off better. So I even set aside my audio book and just listened to music on the way to work. It worked wonderfully. I hit the ground running this week, and turned in a pretty good Monday.
Music has always been my wonder-drug. I can recreate any emotion with the proper mix of music, though I’m less inclined to pull out the “angst-mix” like I did when I was younger. I can even keep myself awake at work with the right music. If I let myself I could spend all my writing time just making playlists to set the right mood for each scene.
For me music is a very personal thing. I don’t usually go around recommending music–especially music that means the most to me. It’s like opening a can of raw emotion–it just can’t turn out well. Even when I mention music I like it’s not really a recommendation. I couldn’t care less if you don’t like it. Often I don’t even know why I like it myself. I just do. It feels familiar somehow, it summarizes what I can’t put into words. It evokes an emotion that I want to experience again. It’s like trying to describe taste. Vocabulary fails.
Music is especially helpful when life get a bit overwhelming. When I get into a funk because the world is just too much to take there’s usually nothing else that can cut through that like music. I’m forever grateful for a mother who raised me to like a variety of music, and to a family that exposed me to an even wider variety. Somewhere along the way I learned to be musically independent well before I attained independence in other areas.
Perhaps it’s because music lives so nicely inside my head, which is where I live most of the time (insert obvious joke here). Music is easier to carry in memory than prose. My mind can reproduce music much more easily than text. That makes it almost infinitely portable.
As much as I love music I have to wonder why a career as a musician was so easy to leave behind. Perhaps it’s because for music is all about me. I enjoy making it with other people, yes, but I’ve never felt compelled to be an evangelist. I’ve never felt any particular calling to bring music to others or to raise the next generation of musicians. It’s simply an indulgence, entirely selfish. If anyone gets anything out of it, great. So it’s probably best I never became a music teacher.
Music never took it personally. It’s still there for me.