If It Is Music to Your Ears…

What EXACTLY is music?

The dictionary defines music as “an art of sound in time that expresses ideas and emotions in significant forms through the elements of rhythm, melody, harmony, and color.” The fact is, however, that what really constitutes music has been the subject of debate by philosophers, scientists, and even musicians themselves.

Music is not all Greek

Where and how the very word “music” came into being is debated. Some say that the word came from the Greek word “mousikê” (“tekhnê”) by way of the Latin “música.” Others say that the word comes from the ancient Greek word “mousike,” which was used to describe any of the arts or sciences performed by muses.

You’d probably have a bit of difficulty getting a devoted fan of opera to agree that rap was, in fact, real music. Rock-and-rollers are devout in their belief that all music culminated in the development of rock and roll, and that anything called “music” before or since wasn’t really music.

What we call music is in every part of our lives. If you watch television or listen to the radio, if you go to concerts, plays, or sporting events, music is there. Music has been used to inspire and to incite. Music is powerful!

So what exactly is it that determines what type music we personally find pleasing? I think that our appreciation and enjoyment of particular types of music is based on several factors.

The main factor that determines our affinity for a particular genre of music is based upon our personal history — the circumstances under which we lead our lives. The music that we like is a reflection of our own inner feelings, and those inner feelings are produced by our personal history.

The bottom line is, if it’s music to your ears, it’s music!