This question was posed to me by my husband – who rarely reads my blog, by the way – when I was pondering to myself about what to write about. And even though he doesn’t regularly read this awesome blog, he actually posed a valid question. Why don’t I ever write about music?
Well, the answer is simple (at least to me). It’s not because I have nothing to say about music, or that I don’t know anything about music. I may be a little horn tooter right now, but I know a lot about music. I have 20,000 songs on my iPod, consisting of all different types of music. I’m pretty well-versed. But here’s my problem: I just don’t know how to write about music.
When I talk about movies or books or tv, it’s easy to describe scenes and actors and plots and stuff like that. It’s all visual, so you can describe what you see, and you can include pictures to accompany. But music is purely auditory. You can hear it, which makes it difficult to describe to other people. I can talk about certain lyrics I hear, but to try to explain why I love Kelly Clarkson’s vocals or John Mayer’s guitar seems impossible to me. Why do I love the way Vanessa-Mae’s violin sounds? Why does Dido’s voice haunt me? I don’t know. I feel like I can’t back up why I like something without just playing the song for someone and saying, “See what I mean? Sounds great, yeah?”
I’ve written one blog about music before, and that was excruciating. Seriously, to try describe why I like the score to Lord of the Rings was like trying to describe why I like the taste of Skittles. Um, because I like it? I don’t know, it just sounds really beautiful! This is why trying to write about music hurts my brain.
The only way I can express how I feel about certain music is to play the iPod Shuffle game. I know it’s a totally lame attempt at doing this, but come on. It’s a fun game, and it not only reminds me of what music I have in my collection (which 20,000 songs, I tend to forget), but it also introduces music to other people. And that’s what I love best about music. I force people to listen to my iPod in my car, or force them to listen to my iPod at work, even if they don’t know what the hell they’re listening to. If they hear a song they’ve never heard, or one they haven’t heard in a long time, and I see them jamming to it, I feel great. I feel validated, like my taste in music is different from everyone else’s. And that’s a pretty good feeling.
So here we go. The iPod Shuffle game.
1.How Are You Feeling Today? “The Stairs of Cirith Ungol” from The Lord of the Rings: Return of the King Complete Recordings
2.Will I get Far In Life? “I’ll Cover You” from Rent: The Original Motion Picture Soundtrack
3.What Is my Best Friend’s Theme Song? “Natural Disaster” by Plain White T’s
4. What is/Was High School Like? “Nights on Broadway” by The Bee Gees
5.What is The Best Thing About Me? “The Man I Love” by Kate Bush
6.How Was Yesterday? “I Me Mine” by The Beatles
7.What is my Love Life Like? “Touch of Heaven” by Richard Marx
8.What will my Parents Say To me? “I Go to Sleep” by The Pretenders
9.What Song Will They Play On My Funeral? “Marilou Sous La Neige” from French Cafe
10.How Does The World See Me? “Between the Lines” by Leigh Nash
11. What do My Friends Really Think Of Me? “A Neverending Dream” by Cascada
12.What is the World Keeping Secret From Me? “Old Shep” by Elvis Presley
13. How Do I make Myself Happy? “Love Me or Leave Me” by Lena Horne
14.What Should I Do With My Life? “Cupid” by Jack Johnson
15.Will I Have Children? “When You Were Mine” by Prince
16. What is Good Advice? “This” by Lisa Loeb
17.What does everyone Else Think Of My Current Life? “Boys Don’t Cry” by The Cure
18.What Type Of Men/Women Do I like? “The World is New” by Save Ferris
19.Where Will I Live? “2000 Miles” by Coldplay
20.What Will My Dying Words Be? “Where You Lead, I Will Follow” by Carole King
Well, none of that actually made sense, but still…it was fun. And yes, it was a lame cop-out in explaining why I like music, but to me it’s a little better than telling you that I love Lady Gaga’s songs because they’re pop music at its best, or that Colbie Caillat’s voice makes me feel totally relaxed, or that INXS had the best guitar riffs, or that I love to sing along to Britney Spears. I can only tell you facts; I can’t explain to you why. I guess that’s why music is so personal – only we know why we love songs the way we do. It’s just how we feel.
Just don’t ask me why.