This I Believe

Jon - Conway, Arkansas
Entered on October 3, 2007
Age Group: 18 - 30
Themes: creativity
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Life Is Music

“I think I should have no other mortal wants, if I could always have plenty of music. It seems to infuse strength into my limbs and ideas into my brain. Life seems to go on without effort, when I am filled with music.” -George Eliot

I have always been intrigued by the sounds and delicacy of music. It is as if the composer or performer is pouring his or her soul out when they are in their comfort zone of musicianship. Music is not only a form of art but it is also the forming of words that cannot be expressed verbally. It is a feeling. A passion. Some of the most memorable moments of my life have been brought about by music. As a child going to concerts with my parents, I loved getting to see the band on the big screen, as I was too small to see them on the stage. As a teenager, going to concerts large, small, or any style available, swaying or screaming to the music, has been my passion.

The complexity and also the simplicity of the art baffle me. A tune as common and as rudimentary as London Bridge is Falling Down can be as beautiful as a complex composition such as Beethoven’s Moonlight Sonata. It is all inspirational to someone. Music has almost totally become my life. I have learned it. I have lived it. I have loved it. It, to me, is one of the only true forms of artwork that can accurately describe one’s inner feelings. I have always thought that music can help comfort you when you are down. If I need to express my feelings but cannot find the right way to do so, music has been there for me. I can always find that one specific composition and just let go. If I were to lose someone, somehow I would try to cope as much as I could and I would make it through with my music.

Music has educated me about life. It has taught me to be patient with life. Never jump ahead in a piece of music because things tend to fall apart when you do, the same can be said about life. It has also taught me to care about life, not to take it for granted. If I were to take one of my saxophones and pitch it across the room and break it into pieces I would be devastated. That would be like me jumping off a bridge to certain death. Music has let me see that life is worth the hard work you put into it.

In marching band, I would practice all the time. While I was sweating and hurting from the strenuous rehearsals I would never complain because I knew that every moment that I invested would pay off when I would be out on the field performing in front of hundreds, sometimes thousands, of fans that were applauding and praising us. It is always worth the time and effort and care to succeed.

I am one of the people that sing along with music as they drive. I hum, whistle, sing, scream, and any other form that is plausible, along with the tune I am hearing. If I am listening to Rock and Roll, such as The Who or The Beatles, I sing along. If I am listening to heavy metal, like Haste the Day or Blindside, I tend to scream along and stomp my feet with the beat. For every type of music I have listened to, I have found my own way of “playing along.” Even with jazz, I have my own special way of bonding with the music.

One of the most well known forms of American music is jazz. Jazz is not just a form of music. Jazz is love and sorrow, solace and invigoration. It is what lets me into my own mind. As I listen to some of my favorite jazz pieces, I become a part of the music when I add my own intuitiveness to the already strong and steady beats. As I snap and tap to the music my mind and body calm. I enjoy playing all the different styles of jazz as well. Sometimes when I feel the need to vent my feelings I just break out my saxophone and start peeling off my favorite jazz compositions. If I feel good, I might play one of my favorite compositions, Heatseeker, in my room. My fingers practically spinning up and down my saxophone making those shrill fast notes come to life. Maybe if I do not feel to well I would play Miles Davis’ Round Midnight with the slow soulful sounds echoing through my mind and out into the air. Really, that can go for any type of music. I play rock, classical, movie scores, and many other types of music. It just helps me relax. If it were not for my bond with music, I probably could not cope with the stress of everyday.

Music is my own place to get away and yet be with everyone at the same time. At concerts, I can be in a crowd of thousands and be entirely by myself simultaneously. While I am completely surrounded by a mass of screaming people, my own mind distances me from everyone around. As I sway to the music, I begin to think about my life and ponder over decisions while I breathe in all the emotions poured towards me from the stage. Music puts me into that place no one can hurt me. It is as if I am standing in a desolate forest with nothing around me except the sounds and emotions of life. Music connects me to people in a way nothing else can compare to. Everyone can find his or her own comfort zone. I have found mine.

All the people that I have become close to throughout my life have had a major impact on me. Although I love these people more than words can express I do not know if they have had as much of an effect on me as music has. Many times when I am depressed, I can turn to my friends but when I could not, music has always been there and will always be there for me. Music is truly one of my most prized possessions if you could even call it such a thing.

Music has become a safe haven for me. It has kept me alive. Music is my drug. Music has been by far more rewarding and pleasant than any drug conceivable. It keeps me calm and sober. It helps me realize my true desires and the innermost thoughts that I have never encountered while without. I think that music changes the world more than democracies and politics. Music has the ability to bring people together in a way that nothing else can compare.

I believe life is music. Music is life. I believe in the emotion of music. The soul. The music.