The Power Of Music Essay Research Paper — страница 2

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almost instantaneous. Arthur William Edgar O’Shaughnessy describes this power of music wonderfully in an excerpt from “We Are the Music Makers.” “One man with a dream, at pleasure, so go forth and conquer a crown; and three with a new songs measure can trample a kingdom down.” Music throughout history has been used to encourage a spirit of worship and to communicate with God. In fact, until the renaissance, music that wasn’t written for or about God was strictly forbidden and punishable by death. All music was said to come directly from God to help us to worship, so composers never put their names on their songs. They never received credit for their work because to take credit for “Gods” music would be blasphemy. The first recognized composer in history was a nun

named Hildegarde. This early “sacred” music was monophonic, it had one melody line and no accompaniment. Soon, however, composers began to write non-sacred, or secular, music. With the rise of secular, non-sacred music, the use of harmonies and eventually a harmonic system became popular. In order to compete with the popularity of secular music, sacred music composers began to employ some of the styles and techniques used in the secular music. The styles became so similar, some Baroque composers such as J.S. Bach wrote both secular and sacred music. After the Baroque era , the popularity of secular music rose so much that sacred music was all but forgotten. This trend of musical taste continued in this fashion until late in the nineteenth century when an entire branch of

secular music was founded on a style of worship music. This style was created by slaves in the United States, it was derived from African music and Negro spirituals. The sound and feeling of this “Gospel” style caught on fast. Soon, a secular style of Gospel appeared; it was called the blues. Today, the reach of the blues into popular music is immense. B.B. King says, “… the blues is universal. The rockers, and rappers and soul children all come out of the blues. The blues is the grandfather watching over his children.” (p202) The most powerful function of music, however, is its ability to express our emotions, thoughts, and feelings. Music has been so important to me, I would venture to say that without it, I would not be alive. As someone diagnosed with bi-polar

disorder, or more commonly known as manic depression, I have been prone to very wide and potentially dangerous mood swings. These moods and the emotions associated with them, although often times irrational, were nonetheless extremely powerful. Emotions that powerful had to be released and expressed to the outside world. I like many teenagers, found that to express myself with words was far too difficult and frustrating. I found a way to express myself, handle difficult situations, and manipulate my emotions. “Music creates order out of chaos; for rhythm imposes unanimity upon the divergent; melody imposes continuity upon the disjointed; and harmony imposes compatibility upon the incongruous” (Menuhin, p9). Music is the most powerful force on earth. It can make you fall in

love, strike down an enemy, or weep for friends lost. Without music in everyday life, the world would be an extremely hostile and ugly place. Anthony Storr said it best in his book Music and the Mind; “music exalts life, enhances life, and gives it meaning…it is both personal and beyond the personal…it remains a fixed point of reference in an unpredictable world. Music is a source of reconciliation, exhilaration, and hope that never fails” (p 188). Firth, Raymond. Elements of Social Organization. London: Watts.1961. p171. King and Ritz. “Blues All Around Me”. Essence magazine. Nov. 96. Vol.27. Issue 7. p110-201. Menuhin, Yehudi. Theme and Variations. New York. Stein & Day. 1972. p9 O’ Shaughnessy, Arthur William Edgar. “We Are the Melody Makers” The Oxford

Dictionary of Quotations; Oxford University Press. 1979. Storr, Anthony. Music and the Mind. New York. The Free Press. 1992. p188 Wilson, Edward O. Sociobiology. Cambridge, Mass. Harvard University Press. 1975. p564. 2-13-97 1328 words Fine Arts Humanities( Music Paper) THE POWER OF MUSIC