Music: an essential part of the human experience

Written by Muleskinner Staff

Story by ELLEN BECKER, Managing Editor—
EllensmallerAs I was sitting at my desk, trying to think of a topic to write about this week, I could hear my co-worker, Andy Lyon’s music playing in the distance.
And although I’m not a huge fan of Kid Cudi, I had to remind myself of what I always tell others.
Don’t limit yourself by sticking to one or two genres.
I think it’s important to listen to as much music as possible.
I’ve found that it helps me learn to appreciate all music as an art form.
In fact, I have a system for discovering new music.
Every month, I go to Hastings’ 99-cent CD rack and blindly choose four or five albums.
I don’t look at what I’ve got until I’ve paid and left the store.
It’s surprising how many new songs I’ve discovered that I would have never listened to before.
I’ve always loved music.
My dad taught elementary music for more than 30 years and gives private lessons, so I grew up surrounded by it.
I decided at age 13 to learn how to play the guitar. The bass guitar and drums soon followed.
There’s just something about the right bass line, guitar riff and beat merging together to form the perfect sound.
The literal meaning of the word ‘music’ according to any dictionary is “the art of combining vocal or instrumental sounds in a harmonious or expressive way.”
Like any other art form, music is a means of self-expression. And in a way, it’s universal of all art forms.
There are unlimited combinations of sounds that can be combined in a myriad of ways, with hundreds of different instruments, at many different speeds.
Depending on all of these variants, it can be calming, intellectually stimulating or even therapeutic.
It’s been said that music is the one aspect of language that no matter what language is used, it has the ability to portray the same emotion.
Not only does music convey emotion through instruments and sounds, but through words.
Even the loudest, most hardcore songs have inspiring lyrics, if you can get past the noise and take the time to really listen.
I can be having a horrible day, and the lyrics from one song can instantly change my whole mood.
It’s hard to imagine a world without music.
Whether it’s listening to a break-up song as you’re contemplating what went wrong, or the feeling you get when standing in a stadium as the national anthem is sung in unison by thousands of people, music is a powerful part of our everyday lives.
So whether you prefer country, jazz, rock, pop or even dubstep, I encourage you to step outside your realm of comfort and take the time to experience something new.
Don’t judge a song by its genre.