Music, essentially

I've been toying very idly for some time with the idea of getting a piano, and I might have one in a couple of months, thanks to a friend's largesse and if the costs of moving/tuning/restoring it work out. I haven't sat down to play one properly in years, but hey, it's like riding a bicycle.

Which is something I only realised last year, when I was hanging out with another friend who was trying to figure out, by ear, chord progressions on his guitar for various Beatles songs, and I was surprised at how quickly the instinct for it came back to me ("No, no, it goes up to a D, not back to the G ...").

(And yes, I realise the chord progressions in Beatles songs are often precisely that predictable, or classic, or hackneyed --- but when you haven't thought about how an F goes to an A minor for a while, it's very neat to realise that you can still find the right note.)

As with many aspects of life in Singapore, if you learn music --- as I did as a child --- you also take examinations for it. Which tends to kill all the wonder and magic and other good things we associate with music.

Like this.

World Science Festival 2009: Bobby McFerrin Demonstrates the Power of the Pentatonic Scale from World Science Festival on Vimeo.

(Via Cowboy Caleb.)

Which immediately reminded me of one of my favourite TED talks, Benjamin Zander on music and passion.

I am buckling down to work intensively for the month of August, but perhaps after that, there will be a piano and more music.


At 8/02/2009 6:45 am , Blogger wahj said...

That Bobby McFerrin video is amazing!

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