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Appreciating Music


Music, as a word, has been given various definitions by different thinkers. Nevertheless, some people define music in terms of how it benefits them; they pay attention to the genre and their aesthetic perception specifically depends on the composer of a particular music piece. Cobussen, in a blog titled Thinking sounds, defines music as “a complex amalgam of melody, harmony, rhythm, timbre and silence in a particular structure” (Cobussen, 2005). He further expounds on this graceful matter and states that it is “a sonoric event”, which normally occurs between silence and noise.

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Music has soon become part of us. We listen to music in our living rooms, in the bedroom and even in the cars while driving back home after a long day. However, what remains unexplored is when music becomes favorite for many people and when such music fades from our iPods, cellphones, computers and DVDS. It is true that there are certain genres of music that are often referred to as old school, and people would choose not to play them. Such kind of music is rarely played in the clubs, and  present generation could refer to it as history. Hence, I will make comments on “How Music Becomes History” by Pater (1839-1894).

When Music Becomes History

I agree with the notion that music from the past, say the one that appeared 10 years ago, might not be easily and objectively evaluated (Pater, 1839). On the one hand, the nature of music keeps on changing on a daily basis. A human being, on the other hand, is a social being, who gets excited with the newness of the phenomenon to the extent of totally forgetting what phenomena pre-existed. Much as what existed in the past could equally be important, we could choose to embrace new genres of music, and this could amount to a trend.

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Techno, for instance, is a genre of music whose origin dates back to the 1980s. It first emerged as electronic dance music in Detroit, Michigan, and it was first recorded in 1988. Therefore, Detroit techno was the genre that gave rise to the sub-genres of techno music, and despite the fact that techno still exists, Detroit techno is now referred to as history (Lipmann, 1984). Nevertheless, I believe the legacy of Techno still lives on. It is the genre of music that keeps my nerves relaxed whenever I need to divert my mind, and this is why I appreciate it.

Appreciating Techno Music

Techno music is still remembered with nostalgia rather than transformed into mere history. Detroit techno might not sound today, but it is worth appreciation. Appreciating music is a way through which a person accepts the role it plays through understanding and recognizing its existence (Thoreau, 1841). It is not characterized by how often a person could be listening to a certain genre of music, but rather is determined through factors such as exposure to music, critical analysis of music, understanding music and finally the impact that such music has on its listeners.

Music and its genuine sound are the first factors through which appreciation occurs (Thoreau, 1841). In essence, one cannot appreciate techno music if he or she have not listened to it attentively and have not understood what its rhythmical and tuneful ideas really mean. Analyzing music is also an important aspect that leads a person to appreciate it. However, it does not refer to adverse criticism, but rather becomes an eye-opener of specific elements that the music is composed of, and this eases the process of appreciation (Windrich, 2013).

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It is worthy of note that the quality of music is usually determined by the kind of discipline that the listener has. In essence, it relies on the positive attitude that a listener has towards music, and how well he adheres to the attitude. The process of appreciation is summed up by the ability to identify the impact that techno has on its listeners. In conclusion, music is all about how we receive, synthesize and appreciate it.

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