Write Now: Connection With Music Always Has Been Strong; Started At Early Age

I celebrate it.

Listening to music for pleasure, that is.

And I enjoy, and appreciate it more now than I did before.

There was a time when I only listened to music for work because I wanted to make sure that I didn’t miss anything new. I tried listening to all genres, but found it consumed too much time.

But even though listening was consuming a lot of my time, I still loved music for music.

I always will.

And in the literary world, some authors will admit, after they have finished their writing for the day, they read for pleasure. Some don’t read to study the craft more, but to enjoy reading a story. Stephen King admits to reading for pleasure in “On Writing: A Memoir of The Craft.” “I don’t read in order to study the craft; I read because I like to read. It’s what I do at night, kicked back in my blue chair. Similarly, I don’t read fiction to study the art of fiction, but simply because I like stories.”

The same holds true for me when listening to music for pleasure. I do not listen to a certain genre to learn more about it, and critique it, but rather, I listen because I like the genre or song.

And the best thing about listening for pleasure is that I can listen, to reference The Dave Clark Five, over and over and over again.

I have a connection with music that began somewhere in the first grade.

I learned how to separate listening for pleasure and for work. It took some time, but the journey was well worth because I got to hear some great songs.

When listening for pleasure, I take in the whole song, and don’t think about how the song was written or constructed or recorded. I just listen to the song.

I will listen when driving in my car, or listen when I take a walk. I don’t usually listen to playlists because when listening to one song, it may remind me of another song of which I will listen to after the current song has completed or I will stop the current song and go straight to the new song. My listening tastes vary. I try to listen to jazz fusion, some hip-hop, big-band jazz, pop, classic rock, heavy metal, old rhythm and blues, punk, soul, country, be-bop, reggae, classical and other genres not mentioned here. I shy away from Dixieland jazz and music near that genre. Let’s say I will listen to Dixieland for work and not pleasure because in my opinion, listening to Dixieland is work and not pleasure.

When I am listening for work, I tend to listen to parts of songs to see how they made the song whole.

When listening for work, I am also listening for hooks, or parts of songs that make me want to listen to the song again. And the hook can be anything — drums, bass, guitar, chord sequence, melody — you get the picture. Hooks can be infectious, and I have to listen over and over until I get enough. That’s only happened a couple of times, though.

The only other time I listen to part of a song is if I am trying to learn a specific part for bass or drums. And I consider learning a specific part still listening for pleasure because I am learning something new.

Also for pleasure, I like listening to alternate versions of songs. Sometimes these versions are hard to find because they are not released with album. The alternate versions may be released as a one-off or something like that. It’s more of a clever marketing ploy just to get consumers to buy more music. If it’s a good version, then 99% of the time the alternate will sell, and then months or years later that same alternate version can be found on some compilation set. Other times alternate versions are not put out by the record companies but by other artists trying to make a name for themselves. Again, if it’s a good version, it will sell.

Here is the other great thing about listening for pleasure: if I don’t like the song, I can change the station or stop listening altogether.

No harm, no foul — I keep my comments to myself.

And if someone would like to talk music with me, I am all for it. But I will first ask if the person wants my personal opinion or professional opinion. I would rather give my thoughts on a personal level. That way there is no weight attached to my words.

My connection with music has not waned — ever.