Thursday, November 3, 2011

Day 3 - I Got The Music In Me

The prompt for today’s blogging asks if I listen to music while I’m writing. I’ve tried, but I just can’t. For me, music is a full mind, full body experience. Writing is too.

I’m a musician – or at least I was for many years. I played violin for 8 years as a child, I took voice lessons all through high school and actually began my college career as a music education major. Growing up there was music in our house all the time – and all kinds too – bluegrass, classical, show tunes – you name it, we either played it or listened to it. We still have music in the house because Rick plays the guitar and Sara plays violin and sings. It's one of my favorite things about my home.

I’m not as active a musician now – with the exception of playing in the handbell choir at church or singing the hymns from my seat, most of my performances take place with I’m alone in the car or with Sara. But music still moves me to the core. I usually wake up with a song in my head – sometimes I know where it came from and sometimes it’s totally random. . Songs run through my head all day every day – sometimes for extended periods of time. For example, “Gaucho” by Steely Dan was stuck in my head for a couple of months . This was probably a punishment for making the kids listen to it in the car in spite of the fact that they hate Steely Dan. There’s no accounting for taste I guess.

This morning my blackberry buzzed on my desk and the first thing I thought was that the tone that came from it is the same as the first note of Shawn Colvin’s version of “The Little Road to Bethlehem.” Now that song’s in my head.

There is music that makes me cry. Music that makes me smile. There are songs that have sections in them that give me goose bumps every time I listen to them – like one of the last lines in Elton John’s “Curtains” or a specific place in the middle of Third Day’s “You’re Everywhere.” Rick tells me that I’m drawn to music that is full – big harmonies for example – and I believe that’s true. In both of these instances, it’s the harmony and combination of instruments that does it for me. And it happens every time. I have to stop whatever I’m doing when I’m listening to these songs, just to experience the rush again.

When I listen to music I love, I listen with all of me. I sing and I move. Music isn’t just a backdrop for me, so it’s distracting when I write. I have to choose between the listening/singing/moving and the focusing on writing. I love both, I just can’t combine the two.

Now I’m off to grab my iPod.

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