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  • Why Choose Music?

    By Dendy Jarrett |

    Why Choose Music?

    You could have chosen anything else...

     

    by Dendy Jarrett

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    You could have chosen anything else, but you chose music. Why? I suspect everyone has different reasons, but look deeper—there’s a common thread. 

     

    Of course, there are the obvious reasons: attracting the opposite sex (proven by recent studies to be more than just a myth), a need for expression, a spiritual connection, or maybe you wanted to emulate some musician you admired. Or maybe you were forced to endure hours of piano lessons “because your mom wanted you to.”

     

    But then a funny thing happened: You didn’t stop playing music. It wasn’t just a passing fancy. You found out that playing music could make you feel better when you were down. You had a sense of accomplishment when you mastered some riff from your favorite song. You enjoyed the open-ended challenge of a world that, even if you lived for 1,000 years, you could never fully master or even fully understand. You found out what Quincy Jones has been saying for years...and is indeed that common thread: Music is food for the soul. 

     

    And frankly, our souls could use a little more nutrition these days. So much of our lives involve instant gratification and the superficial. The Top Ten lists that internet sites used to run have been replaced by Top Five and even Top Three lists to accommodate ever-shorter attention spans. The devices that were supposed to save us time, like computers and smart phones, are now taking over our time. We’re constantly dealing with emails, text messages, wondering what the latest Facebook comment was that we’ll forget about in 24 hours, and being bombarded by media that doesn’t have our best interests at heart.

     

    Are these feeding our souls with anything other than junk food?

     

    People talk about the stress of modern life, but not everyone remembers that the antidote can be as simple as playing an acoustic guitar on the front porch after dinner. Sitting down at a set of drums might be a great way to relieve stress and express creativity. Pulling out a harmonica while staring at lake will do more good for your health than a thousand late night infomercials about the next "miracle" fad diet.

     

    At Harmony Central, our mission is to spread the word about the joy of playing music, and inspire those who are already playing to make better music. We produce our newsletter to offer you inspiration and hopefully, the incentive to continue—or re-kindle—your love affair with music. 

     

    You could have chosen anything else, but you chose to pursue a universal language that can change the world. Keep speaking that language, and you won’t be the only one who benefits. Join us in sharing the experience and encouraging others to discover the magic of making music.

     

     PS: If you know someone who would enjoy our Make Better Music newsletter, please invite them to sign up by e-mailing:

    makebettermusic@harmonycentral.com

     

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    Dendy Jarrett is the Publisher and Director of Harmony Central. He has been heavily involved at the executive level in many aspects of the drum and percussion industry for over 25 years and has been a professional player since he was 16. His articles and product reviews have been featured in InTune Monthly, Gig Magazine, DRUM! and Modern Drummer Magazines.

     



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    I have been playing just about everyday for over 40 years. Yeah sometimes things click and I getting in with the right bunch of fellows. Most of the time I play, write music and just enjoy an relax. It's my way of sometimes communicating and saying what I want to say.  I find writing songs therapeutic  at times.  Even if it's only me,  my wife and my cats that are my only audience I am a pretty happy camper. God willing, it's some I hope to enjoy the rest of my life.

    I couldn't tell you the last TV show I really watched, but I'll tell you the last song I played. Billy Joe Shaver's  I'm Just an Old Chuck Old Coal, if you really want to know.

     

    Choose music, choose life,  and the next time you have a storm and the power goes out  break out the acoustic instruments and gather around.

    We keep a few hand drums around the house too.  Djembes and cajons  are pretty moderately priced and can add a nice back beat to those campfire songs.

     

     

     

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    One of my students bought a relatively inexpensive Fender Stratocatser that turned out to be a great instrument for him. I asked him what made him choose that particular guitar and he replied "it chose me."

    I would have to answer your question about music the same way. It chose me. I was open to it of course but one night when I was in High School my band played a gig and something happened. I felt like I was simply holding the guitar and the music was playing me. I got "out of the way " as a friend of mine put it and felt like I was part of something bigger. The guitar sounded good to me and I felt confident knowing I could not make a mistake. It was as if I was watching myself play stuff I didn't know I could play.

    After that I knew it was possible for me to play that way and made a lifelong career out of trying to understand and reproduce those "magic" moments. I felt like the regular jobs I had over the years took time away from the music so, even though I didn't want to make a job out of making music, it seemed to be a better alternative than not having enough time or energy for the pursuit.

    The connection to the music, when it happens, seems Divine in nature and has led to a Spiritual quest which has dictated the path of my life. Again, it chose me.

    There are times, however, when the connection does not seem to happen and that is when it feels like going to work - but I've learned to be able to do that in a professional manner and can always deliver a respectable performance. I always try to be the best that I can be and avoid things that may interfere with that.

     

     

     

     

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