Friday, February 13, 2009

Follow the Music

I was walking around work, innocently bouncing the Dollhouse-premieres-tonight happy bubbles up and down, when I heard lo from the depths of the building a group of violins going at it. Immediately all thoughts of The Joss Man were purged from my head as I was full-force drawn to the source of the sound. I figured out it was just a video (why do we still use the word video? Isn't it all digital and DVD's now?) advertisement for a string quartet. My curiosity was quelled, at least for the moment.

This brings up and interesting phenomenon. I have a physical, visceral reaction to music. When I hear it, it's not just in my ears. I feel it with every atom of my body. I will freeze up or relax or shift footing or slouch or sit up according to what music is playing, and I've just started noticing it. Music overwhelmingly determines how I feel, and it has it's most potent effects when I'm not expecting it. Every single type of music carries with it a multitude of emotions that it exudes, and I have different auditory receptors open at different times. Sometimes classical music draws me straight to it in my quest to discover who wrote it, when they were writing, what styles the were using and generally place it in a genre. Sometimes classical music makes me want to chuck my keyboard out the window. (Have you ever noticed that dropping the preposition "of" is very Shakespearian? It could read, "out of the window," which is proper grammar, but instead it reads "out the window," which begs a sort of cockney Second Guard type lilt.)

The truth of the matter, though, is that I feel music, often before I hear it. I'll tense up or relax and then wonder what changed only to discover that there is music playing. I have an ear for it even when I'm tuned out. Most music causes a reaction depending on the state in which I greet it. Most music can either be good or bad, depending. But the one song that never ever in a million years fails to center me is "Colors/Dance" by My Man George (George Winston). God bless George, he figured it out.

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