Sunday, March 15, 2009
Music of the heart.
My Sunday was spent taking a nostalgic musical trip. While doing the household chores, my stereo was blaring songs back to the days when music had distict melodies and danceable tunes, and the words, however silly, were at least intelligible and made sense.
I'm sure you have songs that jog your memory when you hear them. Maybe you hear them piped into an elevator or at a department store, or by accident when you move the radio dial. That's the joy of music. It's not only entertainment. It's a part of our life.
Athough I don't remember listening to the music of my generation as I grew up listening to my parent's music which I come to like very much, for me music is an important influence on my memory. I could associate songs with people, places and emotions I have experienced in my life.
Do you also experience when certain scene or event suddenly flash back in your mind when you hear a particular song? It seems that a piece of a familiar music serves as a soundtrack for a mental movie that starts playing in our head. These melodies call back memories of a particular person or place, and we all of a sudden see that person's face in our mind's eye.
But do we like the song first and associate it with a memory or do we like the song because of the memory we associate it with?
Maybe it really doesn't matter whether the music is good or bad. The music itself acts like a recorder on all possible levels. It absorbs my perceptions and freezes them, then just put them on replay the next time I hear the same song. I can recall what I was seeing, smelling, thinking while I was listening to the same melody back in my past. Scary, actually. Like being in a time machine for a second and then back again.
I still haven't migrated to listening to rap music and opera, although I'm not a big fan of today's popular music either. I guess I'm stuck in a folksy, music limbo, like a glam rocker who went into retirement, waiting for the day when big hair, spandex, heavy makeup, and drum pads are again fashionable.
How about you? What songs do you attach particular feelings or memories?