As many of you know, I go to extremes when trying to enjoy my music. I am not content with listening to the off-the-shelf Sinatra titles. Oh no...I want the original west coast gray label pressings. Not only do I track them down, I transfer them in high resolution, restore them as best I can and then dither them down for CD listening. I do this for almost all of my favorite music.
However, this post really isn't about the technical aspect but rather, the physical and mental aspect of listening. I just had a wonderful time listening to the following album:
Why? Well, the music is fantastic and I remastered it to the way I like to hear this music. I turned off the lights, open up a bottle of Dad's Old Fashioned Root Beer that was chilled, put my feet up, closed my eyes and sat back and enjoyed the music emanating from my speakers.
It was a nice hour or so of great music. But what is great music? It's a question I often wrestle with and the best answer I can come up with is the following: Great music is always good; it is that harmony and/or melody that has won over the esteem and love of well informed and well balanced music lovers in such a way as to form a standard and a model for others to aim at and be inspired by. In simpler terms, great music is what you love.
Of course, what you love and what I love may be two different things but that's the beauty of music. There is something for everyone.
A few days ago I observed a woman at the park, sitting on the bench, bobbing her head back and forth singing along to her music. The music was pop and I recognized it immediately. Regardless of the music, I was struck by the manner in which she was enjoying the music. So carefree, so joyful and without a care in the world.
That came back to me tonight I sat alone in the confines of my dark living room listening to an album which most modern day music lovers will never hear. As I took a sip from my cold root beer, I got to thinking if there is an art form to listening to music. For me it is being alone in the dark, for the woman in the park, it was bobbing her head and belting out the lyrics, for my mother, it's dancing along to the music, and so on.
In every case of listening, it is the individual personality making music listening an art form in particular, rather than as a general act or general method. Regardless of what way someone enjoys music, it always brings a smile to my face seeing someone in the act of enjoying their music. Don't ask me why but I just do, be it belting out lyrics, dancing, or sharing it with a friend.
I know this might be a random blog posting but I just felt like putting down in words what I was thinking about randomly and without any order really. Maybe it will get you guys thinking about your particular habits and I hope you'll share them.
My wife often asks me why I enjoy music so much and I have never been able to give her a decent answer. I always defer to the answer Yoko Ono once gave - "Enjoying music is enjoying life." It's a simple answer but simple answers are often the best.
Edited by LFF - 5/7/10 at 3:14am