I seem to be an exception when it comes to music (or is it common and I haven’t noticed?). I really can enjoy practically every kind of music, I don’t choose the style even loosely. I have tried to rationalize and find a common element in all the bands I love, but I have failed this far. This might be because I am not so much an expert on music, but may be there really is no common element.
What I have found out, is that the music I really like changes my mood or at least expands and intensifies it. I have found inspiration in music as well as enjoyment. But that is it. I might jump wildly to some stupid folk song, I might dream to some ambient or nu-jazz, I might dance and sing to simple pop and bang my head to hard metal – and love them all1. Somehow it makes no difference in the level of enjoyment, only the way I am enjoying it. Sometimes I even feel like I am impersonating the kind of person who listens this kind of music, when listening and actively enjoying some music. Some styles are not as accepted as some others though and this sometimes makes it even harder for me to enjoy them fully in public, but that is something I really want to get out of my behavior2.
What made me think about it, really, was our company’s New Year party, where there was a DJ playing old popular Estonian tunes, “old” as “from my childhood and older”, just like radio Elmar might play. It was really refreshing in a nostalgic way to hear them again, sing along to them (not dance this time, and I am sorry for that), just remember them. They are sometimes really hilarious and go well with the party spirit. Some way every time you have enjoyed them in some party is remembered and stacked at the time you hear them, and this makes you enjoy them even more.
But I was embarrassed of the joy and didn’t join in (most of the time). There were others. And then there was a really exceptional person, who said he hasn’t hear them all his childhood, he feels no nostalgia and this kind of music leaves him indifferent (it angered or at least annoyed others not openly enjoying it). At the time I said, “Lucky you!”, but the moment I said it I felt it was a false statement.
To explain why, I have to tell about something else. For a time I had felt bad about my child liking Elmar, singing its songs and even its own commercial too often. I could understand him loving those songs – at least he understands what they talk about; they are simple, catchy tunes and lyrics. And I couldn’t do anything, because he will hear them anyway every time he goes to my parents’ house (and that is often). And I myself like to be in silence (eg without background noise like radio or TV) when at home and doing something with him, and when we are not in action, there is mostly some other background (TV or computer) not my kind of music. And when I have tried to let him listen to my favorites, he always pleads to turn the music off. So I settled to the fact that I started from hearing such music as well and didn’t turn out quite so bad (or did I?).
But hearing my colleague announcing his indifference to those songs, I felt sorry for all the fun he is missing. And at the same time was really glad about the future my son will have. In some way it has to be part of the childhood, to hear those simple and catchy tunes, to sing along in the parties – to be able to continue easily connecting with other such people in common parties in adulthood. Oh, it might not be a requirement, but it’s fun, more fun than not having the memory from early on.
Well, there is a question still. Maybe I am not able to settle to any one kind of music for just the same thing – I cannot differentiate between the good and the bad. Yet I feel to be more lucky than not to have this ability to enjoy every kind of music, empathize with it. Though it does make it really hard for me to find all the bands that I like, or even that one band, that one album, I should put on right now to make me feel just so… Harder still because I am not any expert in music, have musical ineptness and I am not planning to change this3.
1 There are many styles not listed here, but I believe I could enjoy them as well. I have knowingly made an exception to rap/hip-hop, because I don’t like their attitude towards life, each-other and especially women. And there are some styles I seem to be unable to connect with, but I haven’t discovered many of them so far.
2 Well, I want to get over of many dishonest and antisocial behaviors, more of them in some other post. But in a word, I am too shy in public to live up to some of my ideals – that is be honest and straightforward. I sometimes can be – and shock others that see it – but mostly I am not.
3 One cannot go in depth in every field, there has to be a choice – knowing choice – and that means, that some interests have to go unexplored. But more of that in some other post.