This I Believe

Alanna - Austin, Texas
Entered on April 22, 2006
Age Group: Under 18
Themes: creativity
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I believe in music. In our past, present, and future, music is the story of life. Music reflects each emotion and each complexity of the human mind and life. It defines an age and keeps a culture. Music is a universal phenomenon of expression and unity and beauty.

What are we without music? Humankind suffering for want of an emotional outlet. That is the beauty of music. For every frame of mind there is a song or symphony that defines the mood better then words or silence; for every emotion there is a cacophony or euphony of sounds that reflects the feelings of war or peace. Rap, rock, blues, or bagpipes, there is something for everyone in need of expression, expression that tells a story of internal conflict, of internal compromise, of life. I constantly use music to define my mood. Feeling like a failure? I listen to “We are the champions.” Having a good day? I listen to “Do you believe in magic.” Music is my outlet and my mediator, and I would not feel together or complete without a song to play out my emotions. Music is a reflection of culture and time. If photographs grow old and frail or if memories age and fail, there will always be the music of the past to remember what went before. Music defines an age, the age of jazz, the age of disco, the age of pop and rap. A genre may last only a moment in the overall picture, but it stays with world for an eternity. We have added to our repertoire the genius of Mozart, Bach, Duke Ellington, Count Basie, Madonna, and the Black-eyed Peas, and we will never allow that music to fade into oblivion. Music is a part of culture also. Each part of the world has and has always had a music style and a voice. I listen to music from all over the world, and I have a better understanding and acceptance of other cultures. Music is truly a passionate and personal reflection of a people and a way of life.

Each day I listen to the stories of others, and each day I make my own story. I play the saxophone, the flute, and the piano and I put my stories in these instruments and read them aloud. I use music as a wordless expression of what my life is like now, where I have been in the past, and where I am going in the future. My mother explained to me why she believes my music is beautiful; it is because it is my emotion blowing through the horn and flowing out my fingers. When I play, I play what I feel and what I know, and the world, with me in it, is right and in rhythm.

There is unity in music because all people have something that is music to them. Music, from culture and history, emotion and thought, past, present and future is the beat of life.