Sunday, February 1, 2015


When I was walking home from dinner tonight I listened to myself.  I limp, so I don't have a "normal" walking pattern.  What I heard was bah-BOOM/ pause/ bah-BOOM/ pause/ bah-BOOM/ pause continuously.  If I was walking a long distance my gait would probably steady into a more consistent boom-boom-boom-boom-boom.  Both are beats.  Both make music.  Music starts with a single beat, a single sound.   Whether you're simply tapping your pen on your desk that soon--almost automatically--becomes regular or a symphony you're listening to in a theater,  it's always there.  And then once you notice, like a waterfall it crashes, magnifies, and strikes awe!  The sheer power of music is everywhere.  You can hear it anywhere when you listen.  And it is beautiful.

As a hobby, I am an amateur singer and sing at open mikes.  I have a couple of acts and they are fun to perform on stage.  And I've been singing as a hobby for 11 years, so my voice has gotten fairly nice by now.  Several of my friends are professional musicians and I can only admire them.  There are amazing bands, like the Beatles or the Rolling Stones.  There are amazing musicians like Beethoven or Mozart.  We all can make music. But we musicians do not encompass music.  Music is around you, is inside you, and is in your very soul.

Listen to that regular heartbeat.  Listen to your foot tapping.  Listen to your steady walk to your car for work everyday.  Listen to the VROOM of your car starting up.  Listen to your watch ticking until your shift is over.  I'm serious.  Music is everywhere.  It is in our lives everywhere in every way.  Our lives, as a whole, can be seen through music.  We're feeling good, C major.  We're feeling blue, C minor.  Our lives have a steady beat as we go through the twists and turns of how weird life can be.  Sometimes it's Beethoven's negative 5th symphony and sometimes it's his triumphant cheerful 9th.

We go through weird crises and climaxes just as different songs go through several different weird climaxes throughout. We, ourselves, are songs that have a regular tune and then change--sometimes on a whim. It's beautiful how things change in a song.  We don't usually see our lives that way.  But, take me as a case study.  I suffered from a terrible injury when I was young.  I limp and have a dysfunctional arm because of it.  However, I wouldn't be the man I am today if I hadn't had that injury.  People call me determined.  I am, but why?  It's probably partly because I have been so intent on making that injury impact me as little as possible.  So, my song had a terrible beat back when I was a three year old kid. But that beat grew steady and has become better.  And despite that injury and the fact that other events in my life have made me extremely cynical, I rather like me. So there once was a sad song named Cellophane. But it got better.  And it's a beautiful song.  

I must confess.  I hate the Beatles for personal reasons.  But these lyrics state it well: "Take a sad song and make it better/Remember to let her [your song] into your heart/Then you can start to make it better."  And even if you have two left feet, you can start dancing to your own tune.

Because music is beautiful.  And so are you.