I love music. Youtube is my playground for discovering new artists and pieces. I love seeing the artistry of visuals and audio that so many talented people are sharing. Music is inspiring. I can map my life by artists and songs that played on repeat during different periods.
When I write the earbuds are firmly lodged in my ears and music is playing, nineteen times out of twenty. I have playlists in iTunes labeled by writing projects and youtube book marks in folders based on application. Some music is just written for fantasy.
I’m thinking of Within Temptation, Epica, Nightwish, David Arkenstone, Kamelot, Thirty Seconds to Mars, Clint Mansell, and Hans Zimmer, among many others. Those are just the ones on my playlists right now. When I was a kid, Ancient Isles by Richard Seares was my favorite inspiration. Celtic music has always had a special place in my heart, inherited from my father’s ancestry.
The music coming out of bands like Epic, Nightwish, Within Temptation, and Thirty Seconds to Mars speaks to me especially right now. The level of skill displayed by these musicians is amazing. I have musical training as a classical pianist for seventeen years. These bands are not just playing around. I imagine some of these beautiful works they’re turning out will someday be viewed they way some of the classical and baroque composers of the past are viewed today.
For me, the real draw is the willingness of these bands to delve into social issues, religious dominance, and question them. They dare to propose alternative ideas, politically and socially, and declaring concepts of the pasts to be social constructs and lies.
“Follow your common sense. You cannot hide yourself behind a fairytale forever, and ever. Only by revealing the whole truth can we expose the soul of this sick bulwark, forever and ever. Indoctrinated minds so often contain sick thoughts and commit most of the evil they preach against.” – Epic “Cry for the Moon”.
The music you listen to is a choice of your constructed identity. Bands are like friends, the more time you spend with them, the more of their traits you might be picking up. As a writer, I listen to certain kinds of music depending on the mood I want in my writing. Music influences us. The ancient Greeks realized this and even outlawed certain beat patterns, because they considered them to be dangerous.
I use the power of musical influence to my advantage when I write, like dye to color the scene behind my choice of words. But music can be dangerous. Every listen to something that left you feeling down or wishing your life was different? There’s a time and place for all music. There’s some really depressing music I listen to for certain chapters and when that chapter is written, I turn it off and get out of Dodge, so to speak. And then there are pieces like Beyonce’s “I Was Here” that just seems to fit most every day of the year.
What is the message behind the music you’re listening to? Is it one you want one to internalize? What pieces put a smile on your face?