Much can be said about the “firsts” in our lives. Some of them are as sweet as the first taste of chocolate. Others are sour as the cringing feeling of being embarrassed for the first time. Nothing can change that moment as a thin slice of innocence falls away and the maturity of experience shines through. We all learn from our “firsts” experiences and grow with them.
Tonight, I had a first in my life that might sound a little strange. At my age, most have experienced their first concert. A live show can be exciting, thrilling, and quite unexpected. However, many people have their first taste of this experience as a teenage or even in their twenties. I, somehow, waited until I was nearly forty to go to a concert and feel my way through the music. I know that my reasons for never going to any such event, but tonight, I had a chance to break that mold.
A friend of mine had an extra ticket to see an excellent cover band called the Australian Pink Floyd or Aussie Floyd for short. It was a large concert hall in Mesa, AZ and the music was intoxicating. After years of listening to Pink Floyd on the radio or CDs, I was truly impressed at the spirit of the original music and how close this band came to the exact nature of the songs. That is a credit to the musicians and their respect for the original band and its music. It was a superior experience.
As I sat down to listen and watch, my first feelings were the rippling effects of the sounds pounding out from the speakers. In those moments, it grew from the vibrations of the air until it was a low rumble of the ground below. I was swallowed by sounds of the instruments as each note captured me. The vocals drew me into the embrace coming from the arms of each song.
I do not say this to simply be descriptive of the music, the talented musicians, or the original sounds of Pink Floyd through this excellent proxy. I want to mark this moment as a chance to open myself to more of the feelings. I want to be free to open myself to the world around me. It is time for me to embrace the freedom that comes with life. I have sheltered myself from the fun and exciting activities of the world. It is a matter of choice and the reasons are fading and thinned by years of unnecessary needs to please others. I want to express myself.
In my mature days, I realize that with this new direction that I can’t just run wild and forget myself. I just simply think that my time in this world has been missing the joy that comes with fun activities. This is a little different from a midlife crisis. I do not wish to be wild to prove my youth as the age piles up. I just want to break free from the restraints set by those before me. It may even give me a chance to find something new.
So, find a way to reach your goals and enjoy life. There is no need to accept the old belief that you can’t have your cake and eat it too. Break that and have some cake.
First, I would like to mark this post with a slight celebration of my four-month anniversary. To some, it might be like an un-birthday, but it is an important milestone for me. Thanks to all that follow.
The music of the world takes on a life of its own once it is given to a new set of ears. Each person finds a personal message in the notes and sounds of instruments. Whether it is an intoxicating piece from Mozart or a vivid recording of a modern pop artist, individuals come to understand and identify with the music. Some find a composition that grinds over their nerves while another bonds with the same music. It may be preference, but there is a possibility a trait or feeling in the music connects with the person in a deeper, emotional way.
Most identify a piece of music that is tied to events in their lives. The sounds of a wedding reception renew the romance of a married couple. A shared song creates the same emotions in a pair of people. Those experiences bind emotions together without effort and are never forgotten, even if the couple parts way and find newer experiences.
For the individual, music can mark the points in life that are high and low points. The first time a teen faces a breakup, inevitably, the sounds of a song or piece of music is heard around every corner. The sadness of the parting may only come one side, but it is tied to the music of the experience. The low points connect with slow, thoughtful sounds that reflect the emotions of the person. Nothing is greater than the challenge faced by someone dwelling in this kind of depression and music can hold a person there.
However, it is often music that pulls a person free from this depression and lifts one to the highest peaks. Finding inspirations in the music can be difficult for one that is so focused on the valley, but raising the gaze to the summit will find that light. The music again plays over and over in the mind until it can raise the spirits and help one make that crucial turn. Nothing is more exciting than the energy from this kind of music.
Religious hymnals tend to take a place in both categories. There are those that create a somber moment where an individual must face the challenges of the world and remember the making of that world. The sounds of supplication bring humility and penance to those that feel the guilt of the soul. While other hymnals are spiritually uplifting with the purpose to raise the voices of the worshippers to the powers of the sky and heavens, they intend to praise the powers and invigorate the fellowship in the ritual. The repetitive chants of the lyrics give the minds a moment to focus their energies on the ritual at hand.
We each have our way with the music around us. These sounds connect with us and we are formed and shaped by them. Personally, I find most music to be invigorating it the way that it was intended to be. Classical sounds from the masters bring me the images of days long lost to us. Jazz brings a rhythm to my soul that makes it dance without me moving. I have come to realize that some of it is well known to my soul even it is the first time for my ears.
This brings me to the idea of being shaped by the music of my life. As a child of the eighties, I have seen the birth of synthesized pop music, but it is not all part of me. I have great favorites from the sixties and seventies, but none of it will hold more to my experience than music of Sting.
His music, even during his Police days, has spoken directly to me. When I was in those down times, his lyrics comforted and lifted me. I did not need to feel the depression because I knew that I had the inspiration to climb back into the light. I do not find this will ever piece that he has produced, but with his constant exploration of styles, I have connected with it at different points in my life. All this makes it easy to place his music at the top of my list every time.