Hard to believe this is my first SBox Soapbox of 2015. Ah well, better late than ever.
Lately I’ve had music on the mind. Not too sure what caused this subject to suddenly hit me in recent months, but I believe it all started with my discovery of the band Journey back in November. I heard the song “Separate Ways” on the radio, used Shazam to find the song title, and downloaded it later that day. Maybe it actually started in late December when I was finding songs to download before my long train ride home from New York. I was in a rush at the time and just downloaded any song that sounded remotely good. In the process, I solidified Journey as one of my favorite bands and Jay-Z as one of my favorite rappers.
All I know is that lately I’ve been listening to music a lot more than I used to.
I guess I know why at the very least. I started having to take the bus to school a few months ago, which demands a 7-10 minute walk to the bus stop. When you’re walking for ten minutes after waking up around 5:40 in the morning to start walking around 6:20, you need something to keep your mind from giving up on you before you reach school (where my mind gives up on me anyway). So I listen to music during my walk and during the bus ride. Take my advice and don’t try to be social with high-schoolers before at least 7:00; just stick your earbuds in.
This week in particular has been interesting for me musically. See, for the past five years or so my favorite song was “Bohemian Rhapsody” by Queen. (Note that I’m not solely a rock guy, this is just coincidence). Since I like the song so much, I figured the rest of the band’s songs were just as great or even better. So just recently I decided to explore the Queen backlog with the help of YouTube. I started just clicking whatever music videos came up first. I ended the week with two new Queen songs on my phone, and now deem Queen my favorite band ever.
I find music to be one of the hardest things for me to talk about. I never discussed music on this blog before (other than when I’m reviewing movies) because… well there’s actually a lot of reasons.
For one, I’m just not that good at talking about it. I know basic music terminology, and maybe even a bit more than that. I’ve had plenty of success in music appreciation classes throughout grade school, and I took a keyboarding class in Junior year where I learned to play piano. So, I guess I can technically discuss types of music.
When I discuss a film’s musical score in film reviews and the countdown, I try to describe it as best I can using genres, instruments, and suggested tones. But I feel that when describing music effectively, you shouldn’t be so technical. Sure that’s fine in a review, but if I was to really talk about a certain song, like I’ve entertained doing lately, I’m not sure how effective I’d be in presenting the song to you.
Another reason, and this is important, is that music is the touchiest of all entertainment mediums. It’s the politics of the entertainment industry. Think about it. I’ve met people people who hate watching movies, playing video games, watching TV, reading books, drawing, painting, singing, dancing, playing sports, watching sports, writing, playing instruments, traveling, shopping, eating, breathing, bathing, drinking, streaking, I can go on and on. It’s hard to find something that is universally viable. However, no one alive and with functioning ears hates music. Anyone who claims to is lying through their teeth and should be slapped upon saying that.
However, we don’t enjoy the same music. What sounds good to you may not sound good to me and vice versa. I’m sure you’re tastes in music doesn’t match that of the person standing next to you, whether it’s a stranger, a friend, a family member, an enemy, or a hater. No two minds are alike, and neither are two sets of ears. This is what confuses me about music criticism. Sure films and games are subjective, too, but there are clear signs that make for a bad game and a bad film. Music is strictly subjective. The only way a piece of music can truly be bad is if it makes your ears bleed (literally) or if it’s just one note for a straight three minutes.
That’s another reason I haven’t talk about music here, I can say this song is great but that only applies to me. I’m sure a fan of dubstep isn’t guaranteed to enjoy country music; but then again, they just might.
There are other reasons, too, but the one reason that used to apply which now doesn’t is that I wasn’t an avid music listener. Even though everyone loves music, not everyone consumes it in similar amounts. But in recent months, whether its the bus rides to school or just a new habit, that has changed.
This weekend, I plan to go on a music hunt- a journey of musical discovery if you will. I have Monday off, not much to do, and no Valentine to get in the way of me being alone. So why not take this time to isolate the root of my current musical interests and expand from there? I hope to gain at least five new songs and discover at least one new artist or band by the time I have to walk to the bus stop Tuesday morning.
Honestly, this post doesn’t have much of a point to it. It’s just me rambling about what’s on my mind lately. But perhaps you can relate to where I’m coming from and maybe gain a bit of appreciation for music in general. I may make a second post describing this further, but only time will tell.
If you want me to talk about music more in the future, I wouldn’t be opposed to giving it a shot to see what happens. Maybe I can even share some of my favorite tunes with you all. All possibilities.
Let me know in the comments what your favorite genre(s) of music are and what bands/artists you listen to. I listen to four main genres primarily: pop, rock, rap, and instrumental. I can find the good in all genres honestly, but those are my primaries. Favorite pop artist is Michael Jackson, favorite rock band is Queen, favorite rapper is Eminem.
I’m SBox180. Thanks for reading!