Last night, in a small gathering of open microphones vocal + guitar + nerve performers. I was witness to richly talented and often comical song writing. Yet I can’t help wonder why so few of us go out on a limb to “perform”?
Performance, however great the performance, have more to do with how it is perceived by it’s receivers than with how it is performed? It could legitimately be claimed that anyone who is self aware of body language / demeanour/ attitude, while in dealings with other beings is performing almost all of the time (excluding autonomic reactions, to pain for example).
As I sat there in my sing-a-long mood I began to wonder if everyday technological Ipod wearing folk in the street are more musically sophisticated than Johann Sebastian Bach? Could it be that your average 21st century citizen has a deeper appreciation and understanding than Mozart?
I suspect that karaoke nights in Kyoto host tone deaf, rhythm deficient wannabees who cannot sing or write a note but have, by osmosis, gained a deeper, nurture rather than nature, gut level understanding of music than either Bach or Mozart.
Every day we ride that musical magic-carpet through time and place, from Baroque to Boogie to the Beatles, Raga to rap and back through Bossa-nova, world music and the dulcet joys of ethnic panpipes / Celtic tin-whistles.
Even though who insist they don’t like Jazz or Classical music or modern classical music with all that atonality and sheer noise, have heard and been moved by all of these, and more, through the subtle education of musicology.
And not only of music, but of the world, the universe and everything; that is everything that is connected to everything.
After all, most of us can hear songs of their childhood with immense comfort, and millions positively listen to and appreciate these moments of escapism.