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#409945 - 01/24/10 04:43 AM Time for Beauty?
Shade Offline
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Registered: 07/08/06
Posts: 6135
Loc: A Trailer Park
It's an old article but I don't think that matters.

Quote:
Each passerby had a quick choice to make, one familiar to commuters in any urban area where the occasional street performer is part of the cityscape: Do you stop and listen? Do you hurry past with a blend of guilt and irritation, aware of your cupidity but annoyed by the unbidden demand on your time and your wallet? Do you throw in a buck, just to be polite? Does your decision change if he's really bad? What if he's really good? Do you have time for beauty? Shouldn't you? What's the moral mathematics of the moment?


Pearls Before Breakfast

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#409948 - 01/24/10 05:16 AM Re: Time for Beauty? [Re: Shade]
Spelled Moon Offline
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Registered: 12/25/08
Posts: 1691
Always, I have time for beauty, if it is beauty. smile

The fact, that vast majority of people didn't stop, is not surprising at all. And I have to tell, I am glad that classical music is not so widely propagated between people in general.
Those, who hold love toward it, will find...

And as it is seen from the article, really not all people, who play in some populated places, are beings trying to get money off people.
In the small town where I live, you can hear music in the streets, mainly during warmer months. Usually, they are college students, for which it is important experience; they have a chance to play before wider public. And that requires courage and some self-confidence, of course. I think, that it is very important step for "new-born" musician.

So from my experience, it's usually worthy of trying to listen.
One even doesn't have to be musical virtuoso to perform nicely.

smile

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#409949 - 01/24/10 05:24 AM Re: Time for Beauty? [Re: Spelled Moon]
Skjalandir Offline


Registered: 12/07/09
Posts: 92
Loc: England
Originally Posted By: Spelled Moon
And I have to tell, I am glad that classical music is not so widely propagated between people in general.
Those, who hold love toward it, will find...


Oh yes I must agree. If there were more people watching that would mean I would have to stand near someone else and it would ruin the experience entirely.

I often find myself staring in wonder at the musicians that are out of tune or ham-fisting their way through a song as well as the truely talented, but for different reasons.
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#409953 - 01/24/10 06:13 AM Re: Time for Beauty? [Re: Spelled Moon]
Shade Offline
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Registered: 07/08/06
Posts: 6135
Loc: A Trailer Park
I've certainly had moments of tunnel vision; of being so focused on something that I have no awareness of my surroundings. I think it's a natural defense mechanism against insanity. Well, maybe not, but being hyper-aware of every little detail sounds inefficient at the very least. It seems necessary to pick and choose.

But I also think ignoring things can become habit. What may start as a kind of willful deafness (heh, I originally wrote "deadness") becomes an unconscious act. Something learned, and perhaps even encouraged, over time. Very much to our disadvantage. As a dear friend of mine used to say, you can never afford to not pay attention.

I prefer lyric-less music so definitely enjoy classical. I am also strongly moved by strings, especially violin. It's one of the few instruments that can effect real physical change (on a visceral level) in me. It reminds me of the end of Basquiat. The sound fills everything up with beauty, makes me want to grab the air. Even if I weren't familiar with Joshua Bell before reading this it was so difficult for me to imagine that music NOT cutting through the surface static and stopping every single person in their tracks.

And yet I know there are things I miss. (Literally or metaphorically) how many times have I passed a world-renowned musician playing an exceptionally intricate piece of music on a $3.5M violin without even realizing it.
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#409963 - 01/24/10 11:16 AM Re: Time for Beauty? [Re: Shade]
M.D. Roche Offline
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Registered: 11/08/09
Posts: 513
Loc: Albany, New York
I went to a college that would have musicians (who weren't students) of all genres and ages perform in the lounge/cafeteria area once a month or so. It was sad because absolutely no one cared. They were lucky if three people applauded. Strangely, they never seemed to mind. I couldn't help but wonder how much they were getting paid...
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#410017 - 01/24/10 08:43 PM Re: Time for Beauty? [Re: M.D. Roche]
Mimi_Daeva Offline


Registered: 01/17/10
Posts: 7
Loc: LA, Ca area
I, too, am not surprised at how many people didn't stop, especially since it looks like he is at some sort of commuters' hub (i.e: a train station). Humans are definitely prone to tunnel vision; it's in our nature. Especially when we are late for our train to work.

Even so, the musician gets much more out of the whole experience than anyone watching/passing by. Obviously, he was there for some sort of social experiment. (I'd like to think it was also an artistic statement of how detached 'civilized' humans have become from their own humanity. That, or a huge proverbial 'middle finger' to them all as they shuffle off to their cubicles, while he is outside their cage, perfectly content, following his bliss.) Let's assume that he is just an independent musician, not part of anything in particular. At the very least, he's getting to spend some time 'hanging out' with his instrument, honing his craft. (If he's in school, he can totally count it toward whatever practice hour quota he has! Bonus!) He also gets to do it in an environment where he can gain the mental experience of playing in front of people without actually having to feel like an audience is 'staring him down' (a common view in young musicians). Again, if he is in school, this will, at the very least, make his jury recital a bit easier (providing that he's working on what he was assigned, and not a piece that he just happens to be taken with that week - not that I'd know what that was like or anything, I'm just saying...). At the very least, he gets to indulge in self-expression and unburden his mind (which would be a form of intellectual decompression, I would say). If someone is moved to give him money, then that's also a bonus, as he's gonna need strings eventually. Also musicians like it when you feed them, that's why tour riders exist. *G* At any rate, money is probably not the main motivation here.

Originally Posted By: Shade
I prefer lyric-less music so definitely enjoy classical. I am also strongly moved by strings, especially violin. It's one of the few instruments that can effect real physical change (on a visceral level) in me. It reminds me of the end of Basquiat. The sound fills everything up with beauty, makes me want to grab the air. Even if I weren't familiar with Joshua Bell before reading this it was so difficult for me to imagine that music NOT cutting through the surface static and stopping every single person in their tracks.


But...but...words are what give singers that extra dimension of connectivity and communication with their audience...! Even so, there seem to be less people who like to listen to classical vocal music pieces than instrumental pieces. It would have been interesting to see what the reaction would have been if the musician were not a violinist, but a baritone. Would it be easier or harder to ignore a person alone if he were without the psychological 'companion' of a violin?

Originally Posted By: MALFORM
I went to a college that would have musicians (who weren't students) of all genres and ages perform in the lounge/cafeteria area once a month or so. It was sad because absolutely no one cared. They were lucky if three people applauded. Strangely, they never seemed to mind. I couldn't help but wonder how much they were getting paid...


Honestly, they weren't getting paid. Not in money. Rarely does that matter to young musicians. When one is a professional,then it matters (inasmuch as the need to earn a living wage so you can keep creating with a roof over your head). They were paying their dues. Experience can be just as valuable to a musician as money. Besides, one of the fun things about being a young musician is the freedom to take on projects just because they seem like it would be good experience, without the hinderance of contractual obligations or because it's a (non-)union gig, or it would be good for your image or any of that bollocks. Just practicing art whilst hanging about with mates; I couldn't imagine anything more fun than that!
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#410018 - 01/24/10 08:47 PM One more added bonus... [Re: Mimi_Daeva]
Mimi_Daeva Offline


Registered: 01/17/10
Posts: 7
Loc: LA, Ca area
It looks like he's found himself an interested girl at the end of the video. Hopefully, if they were both single, he took advantage of that as well!

Can't beat perks like that.

devilchili
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#410020 - 01/24/10 08:53 PM Re: Time for Beauty? [Re: Mimi_Daeva]
M.D. Roche Offline
Banned

Registered: 11/08/09
Posts: 513
Loc: Albany, New York
There were a few bands whose members were elderly. Most were middle-aged.

I suppose it's a testament to a musician's true love for what he does, which is both commendable and pitiful at the same time.

I also do not place emphasis on lyrics. I experience music on an emotional level. If I spend too much time trying to concentrate on what the vocalist is saying I lose focus on the actual music. It's good if the lyrics are easy to understand, but the vocals in a lot of the music I listen to are either incomprehensible or in another language, which I have no problem with.
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#410067 - 01/25/10 01:26 AM Re: Time for Beauty? [Re: M.D. Roche]
Zaranell Offline


Registered: 03/01/09
Posts: 56
Loc: Arizona, USA
If I didn't have to be anywhere for a while, I would have stopped and listened for quite some time. If I had nothing to do for the rest of the day, I'd hang out with the guy.

It's a little strange; I'm a heavy metal aficionado, but I also enjoy classical music a great deal. Some of my friends are the same way.

That reminds me, I still need to put more Beethoven on my Zune.
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#410074 - 01/25/10 03:41 AM Re: Time for Beauty? [Re: Mimi_Daeva]
Shade Offline
CoS Witch

Registered: 07/08/06
Posts: 6135
Loc: A Trailer Park
Originally Posted By: Mimi_Daeva
Even so, the musician gets much more out of the whole experience than anyone watching/passing by. Obviously, he was there for some sort of social experiment. (I'd like to think it was also an artistic statement of how detached 'civilized' humans have become from their own humanity. That, or a huge proverbial 'middle finger' to them all as they shuffle off to their cubicles, while he is outside their cage, perfectly content, following his bliss.) Let's assume that he is just an independent musician, not part of anything in particular. At the very least, he's getting to spend some time 'hanging out' with his instrument, honing his craft. (If he's in school, he can totally count it toward whatever practice hour quota he has! Bonus!) He also gets to do it in an environment where he can gain the mental experience of playing in front of people without actually having to feel like an audience is 'staring him down' (a common view in young musicians). Again, if he is in school, this will, at the very least, make his jury recital a bit easier (providing that he's working on what he was assigned, and not a piece that he just happens to be taken with that week - not that I'd know what that was like or anything, I'm just saying...). At the very least, he gets to indulge in self-expression and unburden his mind (which would be a form of intellectual decompression, I would say). If someone is moved to give him money, then that's also a bonus, as he's gonna need strings eventually. Also musicians like it when you feed them, that's why tour riders exist. *G* At any rate, money is probably not the main motivation here.

[...]

But...but...words are what give singers that extra dimension of connectivity and communication with their audience...!


I think words can complicate things unnecessarily.

wink

I have a very difficult time hearing vocals well enough to understand what's being said so I usually find it distracting. Applies to more than music. Good enunciation is very rare.

Just a personal quirk. smile
_________________________
"What happens in the shadow, in the grey regions, also interests us – all that is elusive and fugitive, all that can be said in those beautiful half tones, or in whispers, in deep shade." ~ The Brothers Quay

We're Just Regular People

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#410077 - 01/25/10 05:07 AM Re: Time for Beauty? [Re: Shade]
Spelled Moon Offline
CoS Member

Registered: 12/25/08
Posts: 1691
Originally Posted By: Shade
I think words can complicate things unnecessarily.

wink

I have a very difficult time hearing vocals well enough to understand what's being said so I usually find it distracting.


Specifically classical music is usually sung in Latin, Italian or native languages, so it is difficult to understand for many people, even if pronounced very clearly.
The best way is to sense it just like other instrument, if is it beautiful enough. smile

If is it that you really don't like specifically vocals, then the best for you is to avoid them, clearly.

If one happens to like them, probably the best way is simply to not try decode grin the lyrics, if they are not understandable and there is no way to check them at a moment.
The pronunciation for some songs can be very difficult, if vocalist wants to have the intonation. Intonation should have higher priority than the pronunciation, in vocal parts, understandably.

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#410099 - 01/25/10 08:52 AM Re: Time for Beauty? [Re: Spelled Moon]
Shade Offline
CoS Witch

Registered: 07/08/06
Posts: 6135
Loc: A Trailer Park
Originally Posted By: Spelled Moon
The best way is to sense it just like other instrument, if is it beautiful enough. smile


I agree! I enjoy listening to languages that are foreign to me. I don't feel compelled to understand the explicit meaning of the words and just let the music of the language melt over the soft tissues of my brain. It's very soothing.

Originally Posted By: Spelled Moon
If is it that you really don't like specifically vocals, then the best for you is to avoid them, clearly.


No, it's not that. When I said I have a very difficult time hearing I meant it literally. While not clinically deaf I do have minor hearing loss and some songs seem engineered to sound like crowded bars to me. The vocals are all jumbled together in a big ball of knots, impossible for me to detangle.

I used to think this was solely due to my receiving end (my ears). But I think a lot of people really don't know how to enunciate. I experience this frequently during spoken exchanges. People mumble and moosh their words up so badly I could swear we aren't speaking the same language. I can not count how many times I've wished for closed captioning during (what should be) simple conversation.

Communication involves two people. At least. You're not really communicating if you're talking to yourself. It takes someone getting the message as well as someone sending it. When my mission is to communicate (either get or send), and I fail, it can be very frustrating. And one of the few times I feel truly lonely.

I'd rather music make me feel otherwise. So I prefer it (not always, but most of the time) without lyrics.

I really hope I made sense. smile
_________________________
"What happens in the shadow, in the grey regions, also interests us – all that is elusive and fugitive, all that can be said in those beautiful half tones, or in whispers, in deep shade." ~ The Brothers Quay

We're Just Regular People

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#410102 - 01/25/10 09:05 AM Re: Time for Beauty? [Re: Shade]
Spelled Moon Offline
CoS Member

Registered: 12/25/08
Posts: 1691
Originally Posted By: Shade
When my mission is to communicate (either get or send), and I fail, it can be very frustrating.


I so know what you mean! I feel the same, especially, when trying to squeeze out of me something in English.

Originally Posted By: Shade
I really hope I made sense. smile


You did. smile

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#410113 - 01/25/10 11:22 AM Re: Time for Beauty? [Re: Spelled Moon]
Bill_M Offline
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Registered: 07/28/01
Posts: 11546
Loc: New England, USA
I don't think the genre of music, or the choice of the violin over something like the guitar, really has anything to do with the people passing by. Most people who go through the subway are regular commuters, and they probably see street musicians every week. At some point the musicians become just another piece of public background noise.

Being a musician myself, I admittedly feel that strange bit of comradeship with other musicians. Sounds silly, but it's there in my guy at times. So if I like what I hear, I'll sometimes toss a buck into their case.

Street musicians are fairy common here in parts of Boston. Though some time after 9/11, there was a proposal to prohibit musicians from performing underground at the subway stops, under the reasoning that if the subway were to broadcast some important news about a terrorist attack, the music would prevent people from hearing it. I don't know if the proposal ever passed, but I did find it tragically ironic. "We need to stop musicians from performing here, or else we might get a sneak attack from terrorists who could take over the nation, and take away our freedom to do things like...perform music!"
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#410141 - 01/25/10 03:45 PM Re: Time for Beauty? [Re: Bill_M]
Spelled Moon Offline
CoS Member

Registered: 12/25/08
Posts: 1691
Originally Posted By: Bill_M
I don't think the genre of music, or the choice of the violin over something like the guitar, really has anything to do with the people passing by.


Yes, I agree... The paragraph mentioning classical music, which I wrote, was mainly my personal input as addition to the topic, nothing more. As also the article inspired me.

People can have quite limited perception of beauty.
Which just leaves more to perceive calmly, for me. smile

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