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I have a really complicated relationship with music.

As a writer, I find that inspiration can come from anyplace at anytime. To me, the mystical connection between putting words on page as the sound of beautiful music is roaring in your ears is a sacred act. I fear the day I completely go deaf, the loss of music will be a terrifying reality as I no longer have that familiar heartbeat of inspiration to pace my words with while plucking ideas from the primordial ooze.

Like everyone else, music is personal to me. I take it to the bathroom, it lies next to me in bed (literally), and accompanies me through my day. I have done dirty things to it, tasted moments of glory with it, and have eaten more than my fair share of crow to it as well.

From being hit on by a member of Orgy at an afterparty (which was awesome but man, what a conundrum…Leave with a rock star or a DJ Princess?) to watching Bogarts almost burn to the ground as Rammstein proceeded to blowing the roof off the place with fire and thick ass bass; there hasn’t been a moment in my life that wasn’t influenced one way or another by my love for music.

Having said that…

If there is one thing about music I cannot stand it is being told what to listen to.

Next to having to repeat myself, there is no greater pet peeve in my life than being introduced to music by another person. The very act of sitting through musical critique about how amazing the latest tune by “blah” is or listening as someone drones on and on about how Album A was the greatest life altering experience seriously makes me want to drink a bottle of Drano.I know you must be thinking, “Wow, you really feel that way? How do you live? How do you find the cool, new, and interesting beats?”

Welll…I don’t find them on the radio, through my friends, and definitely not from my partner; who, if there was a person in the universe I was going to listen to about music, it would be her.

Music is everywhere in our world; from movies and commercials to random trips through the grocery store and YouTube, I would be willing to bet you can’t move six inches from where you are right now without tripping over music in some form. We live in a time where music has so over saturated the daily aspects of our lives that you literally can’t go for a whole day without being inundated by its soothing or trill tones.

So knowing this, why would I ever need someone to tell ME what’s going to turn ME on? There are a million ways of organically taking music into your life, why must it be fed to me in conversation like an unruly child?The idea that someone else believes they know enough about me to think song A is going to fit in my slot B, just because it does theirs, has always seemed like a ridiculously insulting concept to me. It is the assumption; be it good natured, ignorance, or outright music snobbery in its origin, that somehow after years of personal life experience our minds are of a similar psychological or ideological state that pisses me off.

You don’t know me…you only know what I think you are capable of knowing about me. Just because you think Slayer or tUnE-yArDs is the greatest musical influence in history doesn’t mean I am going to have some form of mystical connection to it.

Don’t get me wrong. I know discussing music is a dynamic in the social conversation of the world; just like discourse about movies, books, art, and other miscellaneous interests and hobbies. Some of the most amazing people in my life live and bleed for the appreciation of old and new music alike.

I just don’t want to be a part of the conversation.

I have no clue who the members of the band are, I had no idea that being abused by a family member inspired this song, and no I haven’t gone to see them in concert.

Why?

Because: 1. I don’t care, 2. I don’t care, and 3. I prefer studio recordings over live performances because generally that is how I am first exposed to music, and I have rarely seen a band pull off the same sound in public. If I even know what song you are talking about, it is only because at some point in the past I made a connection to that song in my world and it is now part of the soundtrack of my life.

That is what music is to me, the soundtrack of my life.

I feel no need to bring it front and center in the frame, to put it on a pedestal and worship it like the golden cow; music is my friend, my muse, my lover, my devil, and my conscience but it is not my obsession. It is just as rough and tumble, soft and sensitive, or dirty and nasty as I need it to be.

Why?

Because I never let anyone tell me what I like, I never listen to programmed music, and my internal soundtrack is my own.

Having said all that, I thought it might be interesting to share a little of my internal soundtrack with you the readers.

For two days now I have tried to track my bizarre listening habits on YouTube while I worked on editing C.P. Keeping in mind that I probably spend eight hours a day in this chair and am easily distracted by things on the net and television, so it’s not sixteen hours long. I do think it is an honest example of what inspires me while I write.

Like it, don’t like it…you know how I feel. Not up for discussion : )

Click on the fiery ipod up top for the YouTube link.

[ Playlist not completely safe for work viewing, you have been warned : ) ]

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