Wednesday, September 19, 2007

My Relationship with Music; a Simple Essay (this has nothing to do w/Ecuador)

I like music. I like music a lot. I like the way it can create a mood. The way that it can give me goose bumps. The way that melodies can get stuck in my head for hours or even days. The way that it can make me feel better. The way that when I listen to an old, favorite album, I will hear something I have never heard before and it will make me like it all over again. Music can do a lot for me.

I currently play zero instruments. This is a sad fact considering the amount of music that I like to listen to. Why wouldn’t I want to create it (or at least re-create it) on my own? Shouldn’t the love of music drive me instinctively to an instrument in which I feel nothing but orgasmic pleasure pulsing through my finger tips or lips or whatever body part the instrument requires? I’m not for sure.

Anyhow, in seventh grade, I decided to take music lessons. Actually, my mother told me I had to take a year of music lessons and I wasn’t opposed. If you don’t remember, the late 90’s and early 2000’s were filled with the tunes of ska music. More specifically for a youth group type kid who’s only friends were from church, the Supertones, Five Iron Frenzy, and Insyderz were quite popular. So I chose trumpet. The thought had crossed my mind that I would learn to play the trumpet, my friends would play the other instruments, and we would form an awesome ska band that would be immensely popular (like the Supertones; because they were huge).

I don’t remember a whole lot about my lessons and when it comes to actually playing the trumpet, I remember even less. I do remember going to Schaffer’s music in downtown Brighton once a week for half an hour. I remember my borrowed trumpet (thank-you Kacie (then) Gentry). I remember my teacher looking older than music itself and carrying an aroma to accompany it. I remember my lips hurting a lot and feeling ashamed when my teacher knew I had not practiced a half an hour every other day of the week. I remember playing Jingle Bells and the theme from Chariots of Fire and feeling pretty good about myself.

As good as it felt to play a few forgotten songs, I quit the trumpet. The end of spring came and I knew my current teacher’s job was heading towards a pink slip. I thought about taking lessons again or at least practicing some more, but it never happened. My ambition (and dreams of ska stardom) dwindled into more important matters such as indoor soccer and talking to girls on the phone.

And there went my musical career. Besides a few stints with the guitar, I never picked up another instrument. This brings me back to the start. To the degree I enjoy music, I should enjoy playing it, no? Is my lack of musical ability simply due to a lazy attitude? Maybe I do not hold the God given skills to play an instrument? Or perhaps there are players and there are listeners. Each equally important roles. Whatever the reason, I’m OK with my relationship with music being on the listening side. One day in the future, I may pick up an instrument, put in the time, and be able to call myself a [insert musical instrument] player. For the time being, I am content with only enjoying music through my ears.

1 comment:

Elyse said...

Well Put Jo.

P.S. Hey, whats up?