One of the many gifts my parents gave me was a deep appreciation and love for music. All kinds of music really. My mother, possessing a genius I had no way to appreciate at the time, would let me, Keith, Paul and Phyllis have complete control of the family stereo for our own preferred musical preference — from The Beatles to the Stones, and beyond.
Well, almost complete control. She was a huge fan of the weekly WJR (Detroit radio) broadcast of Karl Haas’ program, Adventures in Good Music. For that hour, she cranked up the volume and filled the entire house with what I now know to have been her seeding the work of the masters in our experience.
And an appreciation for classical music somehow, in spite of every attempt to prevent it, seeped into my consciousness. Though I can’t speak for my brothers and sister, I suspect they’d say the same thing.
Tonight, as iTunes shuffles my library, an amazing spectrum of styles and artists reach deep into the heart of my being, make me quiet, and send chills through my entire body. James Taylor, Lady Antebellum, Gershwin, Sting, Handel…all strike a chord.
Each chord resonates in a way that defies description or explanation; but is, inarguably, a part of me. Thanks to Mom and Dad.
This is the power of music. And I remember in my youth believing that there is something in music that, given a measure or two, is capable of bridging any language and cultural gap, of creating harmony out of dissonance.
With the (continual) news that those entrusted to govern in the United States are unable to make any progress on not only domestic, but pressing global issues, one wonders whether we might arrange for a closed circuit broadcast the world’s music into boardrooms, legislative chambers and seats of power everywhere.
Just a thought. How much less could possibly be accomplished?