I’ve alwayd truly seen music as a universal language. It may sound cliché but there’s no truer statement. I was listening to some Carlos Santana just know. He’s an amazing Spanish-speaking singer and just a phenomenal guitarist…like out if this world guitarist. Like one of the best guitarist in the industry. I don’t usually go out of ny to listen to some Santan but when I do I never regret it. His music is just amazing and I love music with Spanish influence because I’ve always been fasvinated by the Spanish culture but let’s get back to the statement “music is a universal language.” I think it’s true because even when you love a song but it’s in another language you’re just captured by the music. I just finished listening to Carlos Santana’s song “Corazon Espinado” and I didn’t understans a word, but I LOVED the song because the music was beautiful and made me want to get up and dance. Something about Santana’s music is magical. It just makes me want to close my eyes and soak it all in.
In my last blog post I mentioned how music is supposed to be a platform for important issues, but now I want to go more in depth with that thought. More than just music I believe all art forms can be used to highlight important social and political issues. I instantly think of art such as the well-known advertisement of Rosie the Riveter that was all the rage in World War II. That art was a representation of the women during WWII who had to work in the factories and take other “man” jobs because all of the men were away from home in the military. Rosie the Riveter is frequently used as a symbol of feminism. today Don’t get me wrong. All music doesn’t have to have deep thought, but the music today has become so ridiculous that a lot of today’s artists have forgotten the art of music. Art also doesn’t just have to deal with social and political issues but it can also be a platform for personal issues. We know a lot of artists who go through breakups and create amazing songs out of that heartbreak. I’m looking at you Adele and people can relate to that. I think that an artist that is relatable is important, but not only with music. I could say the same about any art form such as writing, visual art, dance, and so forth. All art has the power to incite change and I think artists have a duty to their audiences to make something worth listening to. The same thing goes for my writing. I try to use my writing as a platform to discuss how I’m feeling. Below I have attached three different types of art with a message…Rosie the Riveter, Alessia Cara’s song and video “Scars to Your Beautiful,” and a link to my poem “Black and Blue,” which is a poem that I wrote about domestic violence. Art takes many forms.
Personally, I think today’s music leaves something to be desired especially when it comes hip-hop. I mean you have all kinds of people making it into the industry who have no talent. They look crazy and have even crazier names. I was watching the MTV Video Music Awards the other night and my little sister had to tell me who some of those people were. I mean who is Lil Uzi Vert? But I digress. In today’s music (even though I feel majority of it has gone to the dogs) an artist comes along that makes you sit up and take notice. Starting today it was Alessia Cara. On the awards show she performed her song “Scars to Your Beautiful,” which is an absolutely beautiful, inspiring song about accepting your beauty….scars and all. Not only are her songs beautiful but she radiates a natural beauty inside and out. No makeup and no fancy clothes for this girl. All of her songs have such a great authentic message. You can see that she’s a sweet, beautiful, and humble girl. She just looks down-to-earth. Alessia Cara is a diamond among the roughness that is the music industry where everyone is trying to be so glamorous and flash everything they got. She is definitely a breath of fresh air. I feel like music is meant to be a platform to shine light on issues that plague society and Alessia Cara does an amazing job of doing that. She shines a light on self-image issues and she’s also featured in a song with two other artists, Logic and Khalid. They’re also two up and coming artists. The song title is actually the number of the suicide prevention hotline and that’s what music is supposed to be about. Music, for me at least, has always been about connecting with people and making people feel less alone. It’s much like how I feel about my writing. Music has such a presence in this society and Alessia Cara is doing it right.
Kesha, the pop princess, is back and a little more subtler than before. We all know Kesha for her crazy, colorful, wild self. Who can forget the song that made her famous in the first place? Tik Tok, anyone? That was the song that made her famous and it was EVERYWHERE! I remember being in college and hearing that song all of the time especially at parties. Now she’s back with a…well, let’s just say a slightly different sound. Her two new singles off of her Rainbow album are “Praying” and “Rainbow.” Yes, she has a different sound and a slightly different look based off of her music videos that go along with her two singles, but I feel like the essence of Kesha is still there. Her videos are still full of color. She’s still full of color, but I think she’s reigned it in a bit. Not only has she kept her true essence but she’s coming back to the music business with an even better message. She sings about hope and being who you are, which makes sense after the stress she’s went through in the past couple of years. She dealt with an eating disorder (bulimia nervosa) and she was in rehab so she could make herself better and now she’s back spreading positivity and light into the world, which this world needs a little more of. Keep on spreading the love Kesha!
I’ve been in the band since I was in the 6th grade, and when I was in school it was truly the only one thing that made my day suck less. I remember the moment I knew I wanted to play the clarinet. I was at a 5th grade assembly because the middle school band director had come to recruit 5th graders to be in the band for the next year. When we got to go up and look at the instruments I knew INSTANTLY that I wanted to play the clarinet. It’s like it was calling out to me. I don’t know if it had to do with the sleek look of the instrument with its black body and silver keys. I thought it was beautiful! But anyway I told my mom as soon as I got home that day and I remember that summer before 6th grade she took me to Raleigh to get my clarinet. Those are some of my fondest memories. Earlier today I was taking a trip down memory lane and searching on YouTube and listening to some of the music that we played when I was in the high school concert band (I played the clarinet/bass clarinet). We played some really awesome songs. There was a lot of Robert W. Smith and David Holsinger. I think those two composers were my band teacher’s favorites. As I was listening to a few songs today I had an appreciation for the music. I mean I’ve always had an appreciation. I loved the music back then when I was playing it in high school, but I guess since I haven’t heard it so long it was like music to my ears…quite literally. It’s amazing how when you hear orchestral composition and all of the instruments come together and just work off of each other. At one point in the music all the instruments could be playing together and then the next measure most of the instruments fall back allowing one particular instrument to shine throughout that one part because the composer wrote it that way. It’s a beautiful thing when the instruments just meld together like one cohesive joint. There’s so much that can be going on in one piece of music but it just works and it just comes together beautifully. Band is life. Below I’ve posted a couple of the songs that we played in high school.
I just love music. As I sit here listening to Jerry Lee Lewis on my Pandora I just think about how my heart swells when I listen to music that I truly enjoy. I literally listen to everything. I don’t care what genre or decade it is music fills my heart with joy.