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I’m all at sea… March 9, 2010

Posted by osyrn in Music.
Tags: , , , , ,

Ever wonder what the world would be like without music?  I do sometimes and I can’t come up with a definitive answer.  I imagine it would be a dull, dreary place.  Would we as humans find something else to take music’s place?  Most likely.  Maybe music took the place of something else that we can’t even conceive of.  But music is what we have, and what a glorious thing it is!

I realize I’m not the first person to ponder this, but think about what music means to us.  I can only speak for myself, and I know I’m not the only one that feels this way; music is such an integral part of our lives.  It is everywhere.  We have radios (in our cars, homes, offices), mp3 players, walkmans, cell phones, internet radio, satellite radio, and on and on.  There is nowhere you can’t go and not have music with you if you so choose.  Why is that?  Why is music so important to us?  Why is it so important to me?

For me, I literally have music on almost all day, every day.  I listen to classical music when I’m in the car commuting to work, the gym, and home.  I listen to my ipod or internet music at work.  I listen to heavy metal on my ipod when I’m at the gym.  If I’m home, my kitchen radio is almost always on, playing classical music.  It’s such an integral part of who I am and my daily routine, that it’s weird, on the rare occasion, when there isn’t music playing.

And I listen to anything under the sun.  I like almost all music.  One minute I’ll be listening to one of Bach’s Brandenburg Concertos and the next I’ll be head banging to Avenged Sevenfold.  I may go from high energy techno to bluegrass or rap or R&B at the drop of a hat.  Depends on my mood.  And my mood usually dictates what I’ll listen to.

Sometimes I’ll have the radio on, playing classical music, simply because it fills the empty space nicely and is soothing and relaxing, but most of the time the music I listen to is directly related to my mental and/or emotional state at the time.  Sappy I know, but hey, I am who I am.  If I’m happy or joyous it’s likely to be something upbeat/uplifting, or something that brings good memories to mind, like Dave Matthews Band or Jamie Cullum.  If I’m sad or depressed it is almost always Alison Krauss (no comments from the peanut gallery).  That woman has a direct line to my soul.  Her lyrics speak to me like none other.

Which hits on the main point I’m driving at.  Music speaks to me, as I’m sure it does others.  It’s those emotions that music evokes, those memories that come flooding back when you hear a song you haven’t heard in a long time and suddenly stop and think back to a certain time in your life, what you were doing, what you were going through, and what the song meant to you at the time.  It’s like music is a time machine.  Each song a time capsule with the ability to transport you wherever you want to go.  Often times it’s a journey within my own mind.  Jamie Cullum’s song “All At Sea” says it perfectly:

“I’m all at sea, where no one can bother me
Forgot my roots, if only for a day
Just me and my thoughts, sailing far away

Like a warm drink it seeps into my soul
Please just leave me right here on my own
Later on you can spend some time with me
If you want to, all at sea”

Often times I’ll sit at home and just listen to music, or play it on my guitar, and get lost in remembering the good (and yes, bad) times that each song has the abitily to evoke.  It’s those memories that keep me listening to those songs over and over.

Case in point, and probably the best way I know how to explain it, this past Sunday I saw Jamie Cullum (for the 3rd time!) with some great friends of mine.  From this day forward, every time I hear one of his songs (especially one of the ones he played that night), I’ll think of that concert, being with my friends, and all the emotions and feelings that I personally experienced that night.

That, in a nutshell, is what music is to me, and why I have chosen to make it such an important part of my life.  I wonder, what is music to you?