About Me

My photo
...over-educated and under-experienced, or so they say...

Monday, April 30, 2012

Music Is In The Soul

We had a big music weekend.

I had been playing music with a certain group of people for the past few years and, if you'd read The Send Off , you can probably put together how huge that experience was for me and for Hope and for everyone else involved.

The send off was Sunday.  It was emotional, to say the least, but it was perfect and beautiful and I wouldn't have it any other way, but it left me in tears.

I connected with every single person involved, but there was one in particular that I connected with more than others.  And to play music in that space again was so normal and yet... so abnormal, all at the same time, and, like I said, it left me in tears.  But even as I cried through most of the afternoon, at some point I had to pull myself together because my daughter and I had another musical engagement to attend to.

Ingrid Michaelson is my most favorite female artist these days, and she was playing at The Rialto in Tucson that night.  So we got ready and made our way out to see her.

My head was hurting, my stomach was hurting, and my eyes were swollen.  We were driving down the highway listening to music and my daughter finally said, "Music is strange, if you think about it.  We make noises with our voices that are different from speaking and it moves us somehow.  Isn't it weird?"

I smiled at her and agreed that it was weird, but weird in a beautiful way, weird in what I would consider a God way.  No matter your background, everyone uses music to worship, to meditate, to focus, or to reach some sort of emotional level that they just can't do with silence or simple words -- the voice soars when singing in a way that it can't do while speaking, and the instruments build the emotion behind the lyrics and somehow the message is communicated in a poignant way that the written and spoken word just can't get across.  I don't know why humans have this part of them.  I have no logic, no reason, no science in my intellect that can explain it all, but as an artist, as a musician, I have to say that music is a gift from a higher source and it is something that makes us special and unique.  We tell stories in song, we express emotions in song, we communicate in ways that reach masses of people unlike any other.  Music is universal.

We shared that moment, which was enough to bring me out of my tear induced headache for a while, and we got to Tucson, and we stood in line, and we took our seat in the theater, and then... the opening band came out.

They came out with their tight harmonies and their excellent musicianship and their poignant lyrics.  And as I sat there feeling the weight of my own sadness, brought on by memories that I had tried to bury, as I sat there with melancholy at my side, they started to sing songs that lifted me out of the dark -- songs of love and experience.

I had no clue who they were, but they were amazing and they moved me, just like I had explained to her in the car -- they told stories, in song, that were universal and they spoke on a human level as they sang:

...can't stop a heart that's bound to break, but you don't have to let it bleed, so if we're both here in darkness, I'll be the first to shine the light, I won't let you lose your voice here, screaming into the night .... I know... you're breaking down.  You'll make it through, but I can't do it for you.  

And their voices raised in the most beautiful harmony, and the emotion rose with the instruments in such a way that we all, every single one of us, suddenly felt inspired.

I watched one person after another, people who simply came to see the headliner, walk in closer and closer to the stage in an attempt to get close and be a part of this musical experience, wanting to hear and feel what was expressed in song, and knowing that, on some life level, they were a part of it.

And yes, music is a gift and it is, in a world of war and political bull shit, the one gift that humans seem to have gotten right.

Harper Blynn -- Bound To Break

No comments:

Post a Comment