RSS Feed

Category Archives: Music

Reflections… Week Five

What is it that makes us want to sing? It can’t be just pure emotions, to have the music lost would mean one was emotionless, that would be more positive than being stuck in the negative. So being stuck in the negative emotions means that one feels emotions, but the music is lost.

The reason that this has become an issue is due to joining a music therapy type group, with the aim of keeping my finger joints loose and learning to play an instrument, with the added benefit of noise exposure. Ten cats fighting in a tin room is what karioke sounds like to me.

Its not the fact I cannot play a tune, I am realistic in my expectations, its the fact I cannot hear a note, I am not tone deaf, I hear each part of the note not the whole. Let me try to explain, If an instrument has 3 strings and is in the key of D, all three are strummed to make the D note. For this example the strings are D,a,d. My brain, as awkward as it is of late, is hearing me play D,a,d and not the note D, no matter how fast I strum. Unless I play the instrument through an amplifier that is facing me, then I hear the note of D.

So play through an amplifier all the time then! I play like a beginner, definitely not something that you would want to make louder.

What does this have to do with the opening question?

Well there may be a connection. I do not have any desire to sing, I have not, on reflection, for a very long time. I listen to music, but nowadays it is part of a coping mechanism to control my audio stimulation, I do not sing along, even in the car, a non fiction audio book is preferred. Tunes, even annoying ones, are quickly forgotten once no longer heard, they don’t get “stuck”, annoying when trying to learn a song to play.

The playing of an instrument is as much a tool as it is the desire to one day play by an open fire at a campsite. In writing this I now know I have a desire, Progress.  So , I have desire and emotion but music is lost.

Where does the music go? I had it before the “breakdown”, never public scince choir; a mandatory position, as I was bass, and loud.  I play alone, so nerves are ruled out. Its not heart because I’m not heartless. So am I over analysing things, getting stuck in the anilitical process?

Am I having a thechnical Fault?

On a lighter note.

pexels-photo-164821Music is in all of us, it is a natural inclination.

We pause for the songs of nature, we sing along with our favourite tunes.

We naturally hum to a baby, to lull the child asleep.

Such is the power of music, that stories where passed in song, and it is said that the Bards of old could bring down a King with the wording of their songs.

Armed with this knowledge I entered into the Musical Arena, metaphorically, to learn how to play an instrument. The Instrument of choice, an Appalachian Mountain Dulcimer, the sound of which has been with me for decades.

I was a child of Eight or Nine when I first heard the voice of the Mountain Dulcimer and Hognose Psaltry. It was at a craft village, only a small one, a converted barn I think.  Along half the building was a second floor, with a natural wooden balustrade at the edge. I can still remember the draw of the music being played, the siren like enchantment accompanied by a soft golden glow from the lights in the rafters. I remember climbing those stairs, the smell of wood increasing with every step, each one getting me closer to the music. Not a one had I seen before, from the pointy Bowed Psaltry  to the unusual Hognose and to the soft curves of the Dulcimer, all exotic in my eyes, I remember all seemed to  glow, with a life, a pulse. The mystery of the instruments was intensified by being able to see them being built, right there on a wooden table, sawdust spilling onto the new floorboards.

No electronics, no cogs, nothing to make the noise, just wood; thin pieces of wood around a wooden frame. Kit forms of the instrument were also available, but alas my birthday money was not enough, so I saved it until next visit. The next visit I was excited, all I wanted was one of those instruments, to climb those stairs,and I had the money. The man and the music was there no more, he had moved on. A part of me never did.


Many years later I have  managed to buy a Dulcimer, a good one, and for a year it has sat in my closet, because I struggled with plucking, strumming, timing, rhythm, too be totally honest I just sucked. I still do, my breakdown has robbed me of many things, music is one of them. I don’t think I have even sung in the car in the last seven years.

But I have that memory of climbing that stairway toward the music and so I will climb this stairway to create a new memory of playing the music.


You never know, maybe a child will hear, remember and find strength in the memory of music, like I have.