ears hear + our mind listens. We receive information through our ears and the
data is processed by our mind. The mind focuses our attention. The mind selects
from all the information that arrives from all senses. It lets one particular
set of information stand out. A photographer's mind will let the eyes rule over
all other input in order to concentrate on a composition. A musician will let
his ears rule over all other senses in order to concentrate on his composition.
He will often close his eyes in order to better concentrate on his ears. Our
western culture has for centuries let the eyes rule over the ears. Wide open
spaces. We will see an enemy before we can hear him. On the other hand forrest
people will prefer the ears over the eyes because in dense woods you will hear
before you can see. Back to the mind. Our mind focuses, concentrates, and eliminates
all other input, or rather turns all other input way down. Now you listen to
music. Your mind turns up the ears over the din of input. Now it focuses on
parts of the music, it zooms in on the melody, the harmony, the rhythm. What
you choose to focus on is an art in itself. The musician changes his focus constantly.
We check our rhythm, switch to the melody, make sure we hear the harmony. The
audience will also change their focus constantly. Different cultures have different
centers of gravity musically. One culture prefers rhythm over the other two
basic elements (generalization: African music), another culture will concentrate
on the melody + ignore the harmony (generalization: Asian music), a third will
concentrate on harmony (generalization: European music). Accordingly audiences
around the world will focus on different elements. This of course is changing
today as we are all exposed to many different cultures and different contexts,
styles, sub-text etc.
going to happen when our minds switch with ease between listening to music in
a context of melody to the context of rhythm and the context of harmony? Who
knows. It could trigger a chain of events, really.
is music, but a different form of language. Each language has a different quality,
a different gravity. By that I mean that we often think of Spanish or Italian
as the language of love, French the language of diplomats, Eskimo the language
of snow. Im not a linguist so pardon the broad strokes of my brush. The
more languages a person speaks, the more subtly and clearly he can express himself.
40 words for snow in Eskimo for example. 40 distinctions where English has only
a handful. Imagine the spectrum of expression we would have if we all spoke
50 languages. Maybe in a hundred years languages have continued to combine +
incorporate words from different languages. We all use the word Walkman
in English, German, Japanese.
imagine growing up with a really wide spectrum of music, combining many different
musical cultures. Imagine the palette of colors! The music of the future will
be a hybrid. It will evolve into Earth Music. There will be many different shades
and colors to this music. We used to paint with a few crayon colors, now computer
monitors advertise that they can reproduce millions of colors.
Educate your mind + your ears will follow.