Can ya’ hear it?
Is it me, or does someone’s taste in music say everything about them? To me, we are music. Music is life. Life is filled with so many types of people. Each person generally is the way they are based on how they were raised, where they were raised, when they were raised, and if they were even raised at all. This is music. Music is people. People are the many genres of music that separate sound from other sounds. I believe that we can tell a lot about people just by the music that we listen to. Rock. Pop. Hip-Hop. Jazz. Classical. Country.
I quickly associate music to a face. An image. A person. A lifestyle. Generalization? Yeah, probably, but I think we are all guilty of generalizing. Generalizations exist because they are true. Sorry people who think ‘generalizers’ are racist, they’re not. They are observant. I am Jewish, I have a big nose and I am stingy. Coincidence? No. Ask Marty Buksbaum; he has the same problem. As do most other Jews. Music is no different from us. We are the music we listen to.
Sharing [shair’ing]. Sharing is illegal in the world of music. But in the world of life, it’s everything. We learn from the early age of three (or however old I was to ably realize sharing was a ‘thing’). Mothers and teachers constantly told me share. ‘Andrew, make sure you share with Emily.’ What I would have really like to have said was, ‘Fuck you Emily, this is mine, and I’m not giving you shit.’ But thanks to the strict code of pre-school and childhood, sharing was the only way to go. No one wanted to do it, but there was no harm in doing so (except for losing whatever you gave the other person). Well, nothing has changed today. Sharing can sometimes be a pain, depending on what you’re giving, yet most of the time there is no wrong. Harmless. Useful actually. What goes around comes around.
I feel this with music. I share my music because it allows me to give a little bit of myself to someone else. Selfish? Call it what it is. My music says a lot about me. I see no harm or selfishness in it. I think one wrong with our generation is that we know too much about everyone, but not enough about each person. Who they are. Their personality. The characteristics behind the name. The ‘wall.’ Facebook has introduced us to a network where we can share thoughts about others, and ourselves, yet I still don’t know who people are individually. I don’t even know who I am half the time. We have fed into a network where we characterize people based on an html code, a ‘profile picture,’ and relationship status. Well done Mr. Zuckerberg!
People develop a general taste in music due to a network of sharing. Often, the music we listen to have been strongly impacted by Saturday afternoon drives with Dad or Sunday morning drives with Mom to the supermarket. The music that I listen to today is strongly influenced by what was electronically or physically planted into my mind at youth. However, the music we are initially introduced to is not always the music that characterizes you. I believe that it takes many genres of music to categorize one person.
Take me for example:
When I was young (like sitting in the backseat of Dad’s car, young), the only things I remembered listening to were: James Taylor, Notorious B.I.G., Tito Puente, Coolio, Gil Scott Heron, Tower of Power’s ‘You Ought to be Having Fun,’ Jazziz Magazine’s Monthly CD, and some random Brazilian Jazz band.
This unique, eclectic, deranged, call it what you want combination of music has shaped my musical mind; my harmonious characteristics. I choose to listen to a certain type of music because the music says a lot about who I am as a person and how I approach life, and it embodies a balanced combination of my childhood and present frame of mind.
I gravitate towards music with clean beats, a jazz driven background, and a smooth rhythmic harmony. Although this combination comes in many forms (i.e., genres) of music, the overall tone of the music is similar. I find this sound in folk, hip-hop, and jazz. Many of these genres overlap, yet the mood set by each individually creates an explicit characteristic specific to myself.
Here’s how my mind works (allow me to share):
Bonobo – ‘Days to Come’
Crown City Rockers – ‘Sidestep’
Ray LaMontagne – ‘Trouble’
Blue Scholars – ‘Sagaba’
Michael Franks – ‘Under the Sun’
Koop – ‘Summer Sun’
Dela – ‘Veuillez Veiller Sur Vos Reves’
Bon Iver – ‘Skinny Love’
Sharing music is everything. It allows us to narrows down exactly who we are. It characterizes. Generalizes. It makes us who we are. As much I would like to say that I live vicariously through my music, I think my music lives vicariously through me. Share.