Sunday, March 14, 2010

If you asked me to define music I wouldn't know where to start. But I notice that there a kind of barrier implied in the word. People either consider themselves insiders or outsiders. Over and over again I hear people say they cannot sing or that they can no longer sing, or something like that. They defer to those who have developed skills in music.

As much as I always wanted to feel real competence as a musician I was not willing to give up that other aspect of music, which is the sheer fun of making a joyful noise together with others. It gets people all confused: how can one have it both ways?

The answer sounds simple but is not really simple at all: By listening for the intent behind the effort. Skill is not very interesting all by itself. It is not easy to listen that way. I compare it to going for a walk with either a very young or a very old person: you must forget for the moment that you know how to walk.