Is music important for you? What role does music play in your life?
Aside from being a listener, there are other possible scenarios about your relationship with music. And they may have one common denominator – you feel that music is in your veins and heart. But it never had a chance to perspire outside. If you dig deep inside you and listen, you may realize, that:
– You are a master of the air guitar, or your bathroom is your La Scala opera house;
– You love going to concerts and dream about having the courage jumping up on the stage and reveal your musicianship … to others than your own bedroom’s mirror;
– In the primary school music class, a teacher or a classmate accused you from being tone-deaf. Since that moment you never dared yourself to open your mouth to sing or play music. Although you feel that it is deep inside you – you don’t dare to let it out;
– You’ve been writing your song lyrics for ages, but never found a way or guts, to get them coupled with music;
– First you need to drink half of the monthly salary worth of alcohol. Only then you allow yourself to grab that microphone in a karaoke bar and sing your lungs out. Or to walk on a dancefloor and shake and twist in your “Travolta” moves. And enjoy it until the morning-after hangover hits;
– There is an old tin whistle, or plastic recorder flute, oxidized harmonica, dusty violin somewhere on the bottom of a drawer. Or a flower stand “resembling” an upright piano in the living room. Only you don’t remember how to use those anymore;
– Your iPhone or iPad came with this strange application called the GarageBand. You would like to try, but have no clue how to use it. Except for opening and closing it;
– You admire people who, without any musical education, produce computer sound collages and loops. And you envy them if they succeed in your favourite music charts. Besides, your are also itching to try it yourself;
– Your child is losing interest (and you your money as well) in their music lessons. And wonder how great it would be, if you could inspire him or her by getting into playing music yourself. Even fulfilling a dream of playing that favorite song of yours together as a duet;
– Listening to music has always been a great escape, or energizer, or soother for your mind. And you wonder whether getting into playing music would be even more satisfying;
– Your friends or family often play music. And you are wondering how you could participate without possible embarrassment;
These are only a few possibilities how you may feel about music, but you want to change this. Don’t worry, here at Musicably we have you covered. Not everyone needs and wants to become a music star. I get it. But music plays an important role in your life, although only in its passive form – listening. Why wouldn’t you consider to change this from being only a listener, to become … gasp … a musician?
Now I almost can hear all your objections. But … so what? We already agreed that your goal or dream (at least for now) is not getting a Grammy award. What can you lose?
Well, you can lose some time. But look at it from a different angle. If you invest in yourself, if you decide to spend some time (and money), you could gain a lot.
If you decided to start playing music, you couldn’t lose much, but can gain a lot.
You can lose that damaging notion that you are not musical. Because almost everyone is musical. Research shows, that only about 4% of the population suffers from amusia. It is a musical disorder or a defect in processing pitch, which also encompasses musical memory and recognition. So unless you suffer from a similar medical condition, there is not much preventing you to play music. Except you yourself and a lack of motivation. Or the willpower!
With a strong motivation almost anything in music is possible. There are famous composers, who in spite of being deaf, wrote great music. Well known are Beethoven, Smetana, Faure and Vaughan Williams and few others.
Hearing impairment couldn’t prevent these masters from writing great music. Neither could various physical challenges prevent others from playing music.
Look at the Scottish percussion virtuoso Evelyn Glennie who is deaf. Successful hard rock band Def Leppard has a drummer Rick Allen, who plays with one arm, after he lost other arm in a car accident.
Paul Wittgenstein lost his right hand in the First World War. That didn’t prevent him to continue his career as a successful concert pianist. He had even commissioned music from famous composers like Benjamin Britten and Richard Strauss. And the most famous has become the Piano Concerto for the Left Hand from Maurice Ravel.
There are other famous concert pianists with similar fate who continued playing – Leon Fleisher or João Carlos Martins. More recently it is Nicholas McCarthy. He is the only left-handed pianist to graduate from the Royal College of Music in London UK.
Felix Klieser from Germany is considered one of the best professional French horn players worldwide. He uses his toes to master his instrument to the highest level. No Surprise that in 2016 he won the coveted Leonard Bernstein Award.
If this is not enough, here is one for all others – pianist James Rhodes. Music and playing helped him overcome mental issues and in his own words “music saved his life”. As he explains “Playing the piano, listening to music, is mindfulness”.
Music is powerful. These are few examples of resilient people, for whom music was their calling. No hurdles in life could prevent them from doing what they loved – playing music.
So here is where I lead with this. Don’t get limited by negative beliefs about your musical abilities. Those were put into your mind either by an insensitive teacher, jealous classmate, or overworked parent. Or by yourself when “mastering” procrastination in the past. Count those beliefs into your losses. And consider gains.
Consider all the benefits active music playing can bring you. From a better health, through more attractive social life, up to pure joy to be yourself. Aren’t those worth trying? Why not to dust off that long neglected instrument or get a new one that calls your attention? Find a few songs or compositions you like – and get playing. Singing.
If you still find those first steps challenging, we would be glad to help and encourage you right from the beginning. Music is not a spectator sport.
Unlock the musician within you!