Music… And what it can do to us… !!
Ever heard a tune that makes you think of times bygone? Ever heard a song that you once loved and had forgotten about in the melee that we live in, and it takes you to that day and age that you first heard it? I’ll presume you have, and I’ll get on with it.
This is one of the joys of music, of the peculiar and specific set of instrumental and vocal arrangements that we hold so dear to us. A song is never just a voice and a tune, it is so much more. It is a piece of our own lives, something that remains in our hearts for long after the guitar has stopped playing. It is an experience in itself, as the harmony takes us back in time & space, transcending our very soul.
My Dad introduced me to music, and of course, late 80s to early 90s Tamil Music can be summed up in one word – Ilaiyaraja. I listened to masterpieces on our old Philips tape recorder (It’s still there at home) without even knowing how privileged I was. For every ardent music lover out there, I can firmly say this, if you haven’t heard Ilaiyaraja, you haven’t heard anything!
A song can make you cry, it can make you wish you had never been born and it can make you wish like you are on the top of the world. It is true; I have experienced all of these. A song is the best way to tell someone how you feel, there is no better way. Music transcends so many barriers, there was this Tamil – Sinhalese music album when tensions were running high in my state during the last stages of the war in Lanka and I was stunned. Their country was staggering through a civil war that threatened to destroy their beautiful little island nation and a young band produced a bilingual album that extolled friendship & peace. What better way to tell the world that hope and love are still alive and well?
Music is human expression at its finest. Each one of us has a song and a tune that almost defines who we are, a melody we so love we can’t have enough of it. Sometimes it’s an emotional bond, like the song we first sung for a loved one or the song that gave us inspiration to do something when the chips were down, something big that changed our lives. I have one or two of them as well. It isn’t difficult to find out. Grab your ipods and see the 25 most played tracks – the top ones are yours!
There was a storm off the East Coast when I was in first year at University. The rains lashed out and flooded every road and highway along the coastline. Me and my friends were in our hostel, we had no means of going out (everything was underwater), all transportation had ceased and our college closed down. We were stuck in our dingy little hostel for five days flat with absolutely nothing to do but look out the windows at the unceasing rain. I listened to the only new CD we had at that time for five days nonstop & even today, when I listen to ARR’s “Munbe Vaa”, I journey back five years to my square room with four beds, my drafter & my chart box, my posters of Rahul Dravid, the smell of clothes that refused to dry and the general wetness in that air. A simple song, with no connection to the events mentioned above, is able to play such tricks with my mind. That is the power of a Musical Note.
Each one of us is special, is different. And hence different songs impact us in different ways. But what moves us is still the same – the wonder that we call Music. Discover more of it, search for some if you have to, because there is nothing in this world better than a beautiful song.