Music and the Harmony of Living

Music, to me, has a certain harmonic tuning with the universe.

Each moment in life is like tugging on some string in the fabric of reality. Sometimes we pluck the right string and experience harmony. At other times we sense awful discord that is more like a bad case of tinnitus than improvisation.

Each of us is drawn to certain sounds that ground us or steal us away to a far off place of comfort and serenity. Other sounds match desires for company over a dinner, pushing our mental and physical limits, or gathering for a party. Each of our experiences sends vibrations and signals that cue others to engage the tuning of life itself. If we are lucky we find someone who harmonizes with us in the most consistent ways. Even in moments of dissonance there is an engaging beauty.

Music is a symbol of my current place in life. When I am affected by a sound it tells me about my inner self. In High Fidelity John Cusack’s character Rob Gordon organizes his music not chronologically or alphabetically, but autobiographically.

All three of us writers, we all experience music autobiographically.
I think a lot of people do.
So I’ll have certain songs that mark certain times in our life and I think we’re not rare that way.
Like I’ll use music as fuel, you know?
Not like as inspiration but as fuel like if I need to get into a certain mindset I know there’s certain songs that I can turn on that’ll just… that’s the gas and that’ll get me right where I need to go.
Or if I need to get out of a certain state put on this song or that song and it just propels you.

Exactly.

I can like dissonance in the right setting. That tension is a kind of fuel to change my thinking or to wallow in it. Most of the time, I resonate with minor keys and often find it boring when a song resolves. Life does not work that way in my mind and experience, and neither does it work in the music I listen to.

I have a running soundtrack. Artists give me that soundtrack and don’t know it. Art gives me the visuals and sounds I cannot create by myself, or even at all. The sound of wind, cicadas, cars, a distant party, a dog panting, kids laughing – all of these mesh in and out of the harmony I feel. It is tangible. Sound embodies my soul. Somehow I feel incarnated and more real.

I play but one string in the orchestra of life moving in a slow vibration that is beauty itself.

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