My take on music: what exactly is music?
Music and rhythm are coded in our genetics. Tale old as time, it is used in a variety of ways throughout the history. As a cheer up, a medium to spread messages, a way to help people getting in touch with other individuals, an artistic expression, an advertisement, and many more. In modern society there are going to be music that feels catchy to the ears, the one that moves you, and some even explain the unexplainable. Pop culture is so popular that artists gained millions of money from a single hit, songs that almost everyone from that time remember passing by at least once in their life. It’s like a time capsule that shows what is a hot topic in that era. But are the “artistic” part of the music been missing out a lot lately? Why do some songs not go mainstream but they are the hits specifically for you? It’s all about the beauty of music itself. The emotions and memories capsule.
We all know what is music… right? Yes, we can explain it as easy as a combination of vocal and instrumental sounds and sounds “nice” to our ears and brain. But is it just that simple definition ?
Everyone please closes your eyes for a second, think of the “best song” that you’ve ever heard, one will truly stand out from the other, for some would be hard to decide the best song because they had multiples! Do you find one? Why does it stick in our heart? Now the more you think about it, more songs come into your mind. Can you see a reminiscence of the time you love that song so much? You start to “feel” the music. The flood of emotions flows into your heart. And sometimes it hit hard. Joy, Despair, Sadness, Excitement, Nostalgic, hope… you named it, Where such magical can be found? There are billions and billions of songs out there, yet one can stumble its way to you and stick deep in your mind ever since. Some we forgot and when we found it again it brings an unexplainable feelings.
Just like a Time Machine carrying our soul back in time and feel everything again but in a present perspective.
To be honest, I dislike the idea of “pop music”. Yes, it’s ear worm, moves you, relatable in some way shape or form. But I hardly find the “Magical emotion” I’m looking for. Many people listen to them just to catch up with others, some may only looking for the nice feels and rhythm to vibe with. And that’s completely acceptable. On the other hand, it’s devastating that an art piece have been observed just on the surface level. And that completely ruined the bonding and attachment of ourselves to the “Music”. There are many music award, some with more controversies, it’s a long story to talk about. To sum it up, music industry is ruining music itself. Big artists are just getting bigger, small artists getting less attention. Good songs are in the nominations just to call fan base into watch time. And some random songs getting the award. Who are we to judge what is good and bad in Art?
There are many songs that are regarded by the fan base that they are “underrated”. Why the same exact music portray differently for each listener is extremely hard to explain. One’s trash can be other’s gold is some what a quote criticizing about the unequal society we live in. Somehow it can also be apply to many other aspects of life, music’s included. Even I listen to music and dig in very deep, some great tune aren’t really goes along well with my ears. Maybe we are just consume different taste of society that shape us the person who we are and it effect our artistic measure. Or maybe we are all unequal and unique at the first place.
In the end, all it matters is that said art piece are meaningful to us in anyway. It already serve it’s purpose. To mean something to us.
Music can be more than just a compose of instruments, the sound we sing, the beat we feel. Some might even say that the bird chipping in the middle of the woods, the busy traffic on the Monday morning, strangers walking by at the café, wind blowing through our face when we watching the sunset, everything that causing sounds are music. It a mind blogger to see music that deeply, but isn’t it sound cool to have a theme music throughout our life without us even noticing? The car horn is surely annoying and frustrating to hear, but that’s a emotion gathered from sound, so you can look it that way. And if we say we did not look it that way, it is completely fine. Art can be anything, and anything can be art.
Now that we expand our perception of music a little, we can see that it’s now much bigger topic than before. It is now endless preaching about what one thing can be. And one thing can be look from endless amount of angle. Human specie is a very emotional creature. Now that our intellect lets us communicate, everything can look differently from one eye to another. And too does many eyes can look at something in the same way. That is what make music so appealing. A way to communicate thoughts to others that both think the same or differently, In an elegant way.
Let’s take a look for some examples. “Blond” an album from Frank Ocean, depicts the idea of “Divinity”. The idea that blonde hair changes within time, slowly getting more darker with age, Frank compare that to our life. Slowly changing from one person to another in the same skin. It’s a 60 minutes album with some hits and some more underrated pieces. “Night”, a song in this album, have a beat switch from a more movable to a slow sad vibe. It happens at exactly 30 minutes into this album, separate the album in half from the first half that craving for love, respect and egotistic. To a perception of depress, empathy and enlighten from our past self. We grow as a person and out grow ourself. Looking back at the past may cause some cringe, despair, joy and guilty. It’s a product of development. We rise to a better self.
I could say that I like every song in this album. Some of my favorites are Self Control, Night, Close to you, Ivy, White Ferrari and Skyline to. Self Control hit me the hardest of every songs I have ever heard of. The sense of Acceptance, Mourning, Depressed, and Joy to some extent. This song doesn’t have beat or drums. The combination of Frank’s voice and a guitar really show the simplicity in the first half of the song. The bass enters with some synthesizer, it lift the emotions to the next level. “I know you got someone coming, you’re splitting games, know you got it”. It’s an acceptance that kinda feels a bit shameful for ourselves, but it’s the truth. I can not stop you from leaving, so here I am cheering you up. Because I know you can do it, without me. I really recommend this song.
Close to you is another perspective from it’s original by the carpenter. In the original song, it portrayed the more sweet and lovely vibe. Everything reminds me of you, I miss you, and the music really vibe ourselves to feel the warmth and love in the air. In Frank Ocean, it’s the opposite. Everything reminds me of you, but you are gone. Brad Pitt really relate to this song as of his experience of divorce from Angelina Jolie. He even perform at one of Frank’s concerts, just sitting on the stage with his phone to his ear, just like how he used to listen to it while being alone. Somehow everything that were left behind make him think of her, yet, somehow make he feel closer to her. It is a bitter sweet of memories and emotions. This song is very short yet tell a story so vividly and beautifully. As one of the Frank’s experimental track. This one is considered one of the most underrated song by his fans, me included.
Night is one of the most popular song from Frank. He talks about how he on his way to work a night shift. Under the sunlight, tiredness slowly kills him, and the night patches everything up, happens in repeat. He talks about how he does not have time to waste with his lover. Marijuana is the only vacation he can get, a cheap one. It is very relatable for everyone who works nine to five on the job they hate. Making this song more mainstream than the other. The beat switch is also one of the best in the music industry. It’s hard to come by a good meaningful song.
Now let’s go to some more deep track. Facebook story is just a guy telling his story of break up with some instrumental on it. A story that his girlfriend leave him because he didn’t accept her friend request on Facebook even though he live with her everyday. And she accuse him of cheating. It’s a more gen-z story telling kinda vibe in a new way. Many people skip this song but in my opinion, this song really change the perspective of “music”. It don’t have to be rhyme, on beat and anything. Just a guy telling a story.
At the end of the day, we are an individual with our own thoughts and perceptions. The things that make us apart from animal and also other groups of people is that every experiences we got, teachings we learn, judgements me make and society we lived in. However, from all the oddities, there will be people who have experiences that are very close to our’s. That’s what mainstream music are apart from many more genre, overall easier to consume and more widely relatable.
Finally, even if you listen to music in a deeper level, just for a crowd, vibes etc. it is undeniably something that we get attach to very easily. Making every experiences from the same art piece unique. Sometimes we don’t even know we are in the world of music until you realize you just surfed on its wave. And that arranged notes of emotions will forever remain in our subconscious and we can take a look back in time by surfing that wave back. Music is magical. Humans too. Somehow we are able to keep the feeling and picture deep inside our head and use some random arranged sounds to take more bites from it.
Music is as close as natural time machine we have, in our own world.
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