Saturday, December 15, 2007

Disharmony Relieved by Music/Book

I've been sputtering and spewing in my mind over so many issues, as I think about the State of the Union and what is being wrought upon our country.

I'm upset that media falls more and more under the control of increasingly fewer large corporations.

I'm really distressed that one really major corporate owner has a grip on communications distribution all over this world now, with his final take over of a prominent publication here in the U.S.A.

I'm really angry at the high-handedness of the Chairman of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) who blatantly disregards congressional and citizen wishes.

I don't want to get into providing links and quotes to these issues above. I would have to read even more about those topics in order to do so. That would only serve to provoke additional distress.

I'll just assume anyone reading this will know of what I speak, and if some don't, feel free to ask questions that can be answered later.

Instead, I find the music and lyrics of "Salala" I first heard earlier tonight at Tamarika's "Mining Nuggets"" playing over and over in my my mind, warming my soul.

Also, I'm remembering reading an uncomplicated activity I came across on another blog some time ago. For some strange reason the post attracted me -- must have been the simplicity. Sorry I can't recall on what blog I read it, but I do recall the blogger stating they credited the idea to Winston at "Nobody Asked," but that he had credited some other blogger, and who knows where else the credit lay.

It's pretty simple, just select a book, then complete the following. Here are the results from the current book at my fingertips:

Title and Author:

Musicophilia - Tales of Music and the Brain

by Oliver Sacks

Is the book dedicated to anyone? If so, whom?

For Orrin Devinsky, Ralph Siegel, and Connie Tomaino

What is the first sentence?


"What an odd thing it is to see an entire species -- billions of people -- playing with, listening to, meaningless tonal patterns, occupied and preoccupied for much of their time by what they call 'music.' "

Turn to page 47. Please share the first sentence of the first full paragraph.

"It is this fidelity--this almost defenseless engraving of music on the brain--which plays a crucial part to predisposing us to certain excesses, or pathologies, of musical imagery and memory, excesses that may even occur in relatively unmusical people."


  1. Joared,
    Thanks so much for the link. I was thrilled that you enjoyed Salala as much as I do. It warms my soul too especially played over and over again.
    In warmth.

  2. Thanks for the mention. Like you, I cannot recall where I first learned of this exercise or where the originating credit should be placed. Who knows where any of this stuff really comes from and how many millions of times it has been recycled and resurfaced...

    That first sentence of the preface is quite interesting, and I thought as I read it, What would an alien species think of our preoccupation with those "meaningless tonal patterns" that we call music? But thinking that through, I recalled the close association of music and mathematics, the most famous of which was the five note pattern used in the movie, Close Encounters. Perhaps it is not so strange after all... even though some of it could hardly be called music...


  3. Tamar: Nice to hear the music, Salala, when I visit your blog.

    Winston: Sacks cites this puzzlement about music by aliens, the Overlords, in Arthur C. Clarke's novel "Childhood's End." In our human real life there are some who lack neural connections to be able to appreciate music, some who have more connections than the typical person. I just find all these individual neural variations fascinating.

  4. I did this MEME quite a long time ago....But it was NOT connected to music in any way....It was just any book that you were currently reading....I chose "THE FEMALE BRANDO" about the brilliant actress, Kim Stanley! That led to a whole post about her....!

    It is fun to see this again in a different incarnation...!

    In regard to your comment on TRASH....I have found that doing this has been rather depressing, just for the very reasons you brought up....It feels like I am throwing away my life, in a way, though I am holding on to a LOT!!!
    In fact, that's depressing too! (lol) Can't win...! I realize that we collect so much stuff over a lifetime---a lot of it IS our life....and the older one gets, the more signigicant things one collects and there is less and less one can get rid of...! At least, that is what I am experiencing...And I have been ruthless, in a lot of ways.....
    It is quite a journey---this letting go of stuff and things.
    It is worth it, that's for sure, but....BUT, it is hard.

  5. oldoldladyofthehills:
    I didn't realize this book/author activity was considered a MEME. Oh well, I had fun with it. The only reason it's about music is because I just happened to visit Tamar's blog and heard the lovely recording of "Solala" and, coincidentally selected Sack's book, "Musicophilia," I'm reading. Otherwise, I might have reached for "The End of America," or "The Laws of Simplicity."

    As for ridding myself of trash as successfully as you are doing, I keep saying I need to do it for the sake of my children, so when something happens to me, they won't have the job. I can hear their comments now, "Why on earth did she save this?"

  6. All of my dearest, closest friends feel the same about the affairs of our government. You are not alone. I watch the Bill Moyers Journal every week. Last week he covered once again the FCC issue of media consolidation. Perhaps you can view the program at The FCC chairman was questioned by a U.S. Senate committee about his total disregard of the people who oppose the consolidation. Count me in that group. For our democracy to survive we need a diversity of ideas. That can not be achieved when a handful of corporate giants control the newspapers, magazines, radio stations and tv stations. Will they come after our blogs next?

    I read every Oliver Sacks' piece when they appear in the New Yorker. His latest essay there was about a brilliant musician who lost his short term memory but with a loving wife and others is able to function .

    I too use music especially new music to help me calm my being upset with the current affairs of our land. "Gotan Project" in their CD Lunatico is the latest addition to my jazz, classical collection. Gotan Project sing in Spanish which I understand very little but the tempo and beats are fascinating and carry me through some of my most productive workouts.

  7. Bob: Bill Moyer's has done some excellent programs on media control including the one you mentioned.

    Glad to know others find Sack's writing as fascinating as I do.

    Will have to check out the music you mentioned as sounds interesting.

  8. For links to music, check my latest post: "Computer Music".

  9. kokopelliwoman12/23/2007 10:29 AM

    joared, you know that music is my soul, my religion. This was a particularly meaningful post for me, as you explore the neurological aspect of music, which gives me deeper insight into why it affects humanity as it does. A great "twofer" with the activity you describe.

  10. The corporate media has become more powerful with its own interests and that is why many think that blogging is the alternate communication vehicle that will help us retain a democracy. Praise be the blogs!

    I've heard a lot about Sacks' book. I picked up Proust and the neuroscience book this week.