{I find that my love for the Father grows deeper when I realize how infinite and unique creation gifts are; may we see them all, big and small.}

My appreciation for singer/songwriters and live music only grows deeper as I get older.

There is just something about the connection between listener and artist when they have written and performed the track. Word choice and timing. Story line and rhythm. I love it. So much goes into it, so much of themselves. There truly is nothing like a song that makes you stop and fully appreciate the work that you hear.

From songs that tell a story to songs that use repitition and make you want to dance and sing loudly. I love the share of loving music, the bond over an artist or a group of songs, with someone else.
There is definitely something a bit magical about the gift of music. Certainly the making of it, although I cannot attest to that; the listening, processing and associations made with hearing music is magical and I can attest to that portion.

The magic I am referring to is the ability to hear a few chords of song and instantly memories and assosiations flood into your mind, sometimes even your heart. For instance, at the sound of old Kenny Chesney music my dad comes to mind, riding around in his truck when I was young, vacations, summertime; all sweet memories that I cannot ever return to in time but the melodies sound like memories and I hold them in my heart throughout the duration of the songs. When I hear songs like Smoky Robinson’s song “More Love” I smile and in memory go back to my sister and I, elementary age partner dancing in our living room trying to “choreograph” a dance routine. HA. Thankful for that. Although in retrospect her voice seems uber annoying, during the early 2000s, my mother, sister, and I took a summer trip to Hilton Head and apparently the only CD we brought along was Jessica Simpson’s In This Skin album; I will never be able to seperate those songs with that trip. But what a happy time to remember just by hearing her songs again.

Beyond that, the magic of music is found, for me, within my processing of a song as a whole.

Song Appreciations:
“Love Story”: first of all, Taylor Swift is a genius for writing this song. The concept is classic, literally. Her first-person take on Romeo and Juliet is brilliant. Aside from this, the sound of this song takes me right back to Freshman English class; studying Romeo and Juliet, but also the feelings so vividly return of what it felt like to really like a senior boy; the excitement of new friendships and so many new things to be done: football games, dressing up for the student section, driving around because you now had “older” friends; fun classes before real acedimia kicked in. So much is associated with that song. It’s a creation gift. The Father has linked all of those sounds and feelings together and created a place to return to in an instant to remember times past. Thank you Father.

“Anything But Mine”: Oh Kenny Chesney, how I adore how you do music. The opening sounds of this song, truly stops me in my tracks. The intro music is so visual without words being spoken it sounds like the fading of a sunset. Kenny you do music well. So well.

“Watching the summer sun fall out of sight,

There’s a warm wind coming in from off of the ocean”        

I can picture the song from beginning to end. The writer of “Anything But Mine” nails the ability to hand in hand create lyrics and a music setting that mesh so well they cannot he separated. Brilliant. I love it. It’s effortless and infectious. The story is so personal. Calling “Mary” in the lyrics, it’s almost as if you are at the beach with Kenny and years later he is recalling these events. You feel his feels and it’s oh so good.

“Springsteen”: Eric Church had cowritten a masterpiece and his performance of the art was just right. There is no song I can compare to the organization, fluidity, and mood of this song. It’s flows beautifully in chronology and the imagery and FEELS! My goodness the feels. Whenever he utters the lyrics:

“I bumped into you by happenstance

You probably wouldn’t even know who I am

But if I whispered your name

I bet there’d still be a spark” 

First off all, let’s acknowledge that he used the word happenstance. And then let me say that when Eric says “if I whispered your name I bet there’d still be a spark”; immediately, I feel his feels. I imagine the summer(s) spent with this girl and how those moments felt and although they were gone, if he were to do this, in a second when his voice is reheard by her she would stop and feel that forgotten feeling all over again.

“Lookin’ For Love”: recorded by Johnny Lee, well done by Johnny Lee. It’s so synonymous with the slow grooves of Urban Cowboy. It has an awesome ability to mood you. If you close your eyes you can almost see two-stepping in a dim dancehall in Texas. Love it. It’s one of those songs in which you do not have to be a fan of the genre to appreciate the song as a separate work.

“Island in the Sun”: This is the most shallow appreciation of them all because it is not based upon my original thoughts about the song. But be still my heart. The connotation of this song is a DREAM. Of course I am a massive sucker for a sweet dance scene, and in the cheesy teen movie Aquamarine, they hit it right on the head and I fell in love. It may be a little bit on the unrealistic side but the song meshes perfectly with the moment. The beachy atmosphere, the aquatic pale yellows and sea blues, yes yes and yes. The song should thank the movie because it has instilled a love down in my heart for “Island in the Sun”. Thank you Weezer.

Music has so much depth and so many appreciable parts. May we not forget the creation gift that it is; a gift that truly keeps giving. May we not forget that the gift of music did not come from man. Of course the audible sound comes forth from a human but the human did not acquire the talent on their own. And to go even further, music is so naturally engrained within us.

There are different levels of music. I would make the statement that music requires no materials, but that wouldn’t wholly be true. Let’s say that there is a hypothetical bookshelf of music, the shelves separate the different categories of music:

  • On the first shelf there is the music that is recorded: secondhand music. I am so thankful for that. Because of that, music is sharable. The bond over music is so unique: either because song/album is so mutually enjoyed or because someone else’s song choice in their song/album says exactly what you are thinking (those are my favorites).
  • On shelf two there is live music. I love live music. Almost more than anything else that can be experienced. In fact live music itself needs a whole blog post of its own. But in short: the atmosphere of live music cannot be duplicated, it’s so in the moment and you cannot help but soak it up. A music venue is only a venue; but, once the atmosphere fills with music lovers and melody it is so so much more, it’s (a)live music. At this point in my life I am almost certain I could sit about anywhere and just listen and be content. It’s so real and intimate.
  • On the last shelf there is interactive music. This music is a subcategory of live and recorded music; this is the kind that affects your body: music that makes you want to dance. You know those songs when you hear them, generally they are few and far between, but you just know because you can physically feel the music. Yes, please tell me that music is not completely engrained in us.

So many times throughout Scripture songs are made, songs are inspired. There have been so many memorable times thinking about God as Creator and Father due to the melody I hear.

“Give thanks to the LORD with the lyre; make melody to him with the harp of ten strings! Sing to him a new song; play skillfully on the strings” Psalm 33:2-3

Besides all of the coolness from this verse, the phrase “sing to him a new song” is interesting: not that it would be a song that had never before been heard but rather a song that was anew in the singer’s heart. That’s beautiful.

I know this is all a compilation of somewhat related thoughts and a bit all over the place but the point is music is so much more than just music. Music is a layered treasure: it can be as much as you let it be and correspondingly it can get as deep as you allow it. May we each see the Creator God as the master behind all that is music.