My Purpose

My Purpose

The purpose of this blog is to help people understand that music can be more then just entertainment, and what those things are. I want be able to help people with this blog. I don't know everything about music, I am still studying it, however, I will share what I have found. I hope you will be enlighted and edified by what I have to share. I worry that some people might turn a deaf ear to my blog if they read something on this blog that they don't agree with. I respect your beliefs. I don't agree with everything I read either. But I know you can find something that can help and interest you, if you just keep reading.

"Quotes Worth Mentioning"


When asked where his inspiration came from, Johannes Brahms said, "I immediately feel vibrations that thrills my whole being. These are the Spirit illuminating the soul power within, and in this exalted state, I see clearly what is obscure in my ordinary moods: Then I feel capable of drawing inspiration from above, as Beethoven ... Straighway the ideas flow in upon me, directly from God, and not only do I see distinct themes in my mind's eye but they are clothed in the right forms, harmonies, and orchestration. Measure by measure, the finished product is revealed to me when I am in those rare, inspired moods." "The powers from which all truly great composers like Mozart, Schubert, Bach and Beethoven drew their inspiration is the same power that enabled Jesus to work his miracles. It is the same power that created our earth and the whole universe"
("Talks with Great Composers", Arthur M. Abell)

"Give me power over he who shapes the music of a nation, and I care not for who shapes it laws"
Napolian Bonaparte

“Intellectual enlightenment consists of instruction in the arts, numbers, history, speech, and government. Music consummates a man’s life, giving his rituals meaning. Music has a trensforming effect on its listeners, and should be the first principle of government.” -The Teachings of Confucius.

I quote some remarks between,Gene R. Cook, and Mik Jagger made a few years ago:
Cook: "I have the opportunity to be with a lot of young people. Many say your music does not affect them adversely in any way. Others say it effects them in a very bad way. What is your opinion? What is your impact?”
Jagger "Our music is calculated to drive the kids to sex. It's not my fault what they do. It's up to them. I'm just making a lot of money.”
Cook: He was in Mexico making a profane and pornographic music video because the cost is 1/3 there. In addition it is easier to produce such videos there at the moment. He explained that though such videos with explicit sexual behavior is illegal on US national television, it soon will be, and they want to have the videos ready. Now not only audio pornography can be portrayed, but they can view it as well. He was making more money this way."
Jagger:“It doesn't matter what you do in life, there are no rules. There is no god. You can take whatever you want. It doesn't matter."

"To encourage literature and the arts is the duty which every good citizen owns to his country."
George Washington

"Music has the power of producing a certain effect on the moral character of the soul, and if it has the power to do this, it is clear that the young must be directed to music and must be educated in it."

(more qoutes to come)

PLEASE NOTE: It would greatly benefit the reader to follow blog postings from the first post to the most recent. Using the Blog Archive in the left column of the page to jump to the oldest posts. For now I will see if I can find a way to display the posting in chronilogical order, first post to the latest post.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Play a Musical Instrument or Singing

The next bit of data are stories about how playing a musical instruments or singing can be beneficial. I have more information, scientific information, about how these experiances of these people happen, and will add that data at the end

(this is some information that I received from Dr. Michael Ballam, this information is unedited notes of Dr. Ballam, hence there are the spelling error and typos. It is my intent to not edit them for the purpuse of not risking changing the meaning of the text. It is my desire to inform you of these errors so as to not take away any credibiliy from Dr. Ballam because of possible impressions that these mistakes may have on people to lower his credibility.)

A few years ago I was en route from Salt Lake City to Seattle. The ride was uneventful, I sat down with one of my musical scores to read on the trip next to a man deeply committed to reading a magazine. As we took off over the Wasatch range of the Rocky Mountains, the change in air pressure caused the plane to lurch and bounce. The luggage compartments came open and items began to cascade down out of them. We all became very concerned and frightened as the man and I began to converse with each other. It is interesting how friendly we can become when on the point of annihilation. When the plane finally evened out, he explained to me that he was an employee of Bowing Aircraft on a routine visit to Salt Lake airport to examine the airworthiness of planes there. He then told me all the possible things that could malfunction on the plane. It was a trip I will never forget. He asked me if I was a musician, since I was reading a score while everyone else was reading magazines. I confessed that indeed I was. He said he had a question for me. It seemed that his best friend had raised his teen-aged son since birth, having lost his wife in childbirth, and the boy had become a severe problem. In spite of the father’s deepest desire to help his son achieve, nothing seemed to help. Then something remarkable happened. It seemed that the boy became acquainted with a high achieving boy at school who was also their paper boy. He asked the paper boy why he did so well in school, in fact all his brothers and sisters did well. The paper boy could not think of any reason, unless it was their family band. He invited the boy to come and witness the band in action. One evening the boy went over to find the family were economically challenged, yet, in spite of it all they were happy and productive. They all assisted in helping clean up the dinner in order to get to the living room and begin their evening of playing together. The first 15 minutes was devoted to playing an assigned piece of music, then they spent the rest of the evening “jamming”. Jamming is an exercise in improvisation, with each participant bringing to the experience what they can. It requires understanding and abiding by rules such as meter, key signature etc. A theme would be proposed and then everyone would improvise according to their ability. The mother of the family would finally have to bring the evening to a close and remind them to go to their rooms for a few moments of homework before bed. Somehow those few moments were enough to cause them to succeed at a very high level. After seeing this situation, the boy went home to his father and asked if he would buy him a violin. The boy’s father went to see the gentleman telling me the story and asked what he should do. The man said why not buy it, what could it cost $150.00 (student model price)? The father agreed, and the boy began to learn to play the violin with the help of the paper boy. Within a few weeks the father was called to the principal’s office. This was not uncommon (he even had the phone number on his speed dial), but this meeting would be different. Instead of jut the principal being there, the entire faculty was in the room wanting some answers. The father began by saying “look, I’ve done the best I can with that kid”. The principal continued that they were impressed with the fact that the boy would be on the honor roll this trimester and that he had not been hauled into the principal’s office for detention in weeks. What was different in his home? The father could not think of anything that had changed in the tutors, no computer programs to help in school work, no altered study habits. The only thing he could think of, when pressed, was the violin. Could the playing of the violin influenced the boys cognitive and social skills?

I’d like to tell you about a friend of mine who had a very difficult time in the 5th grade. When his parents went to a parent-teacher conference they were told to take Albert out of school because he did not have to tools to succeed there. Albert’s mother insisted that her child was bright and deserved to be in school. The teacher showed her Albert’s papers which barely had his name written at the top of the page and very few answers. His mother asked if he was causing a disturbance and paying attention. The teacher admitted that he was causing no problem and seemed to be paying attention, and yet he could not seem to retain any information, and failed nearly every test he took. Albert’s parents insisted that he stay in school. Concurrent with that meeting, Albert’s father bought him a violin. Albert began to practice regularly. He never became a concert violinist, and played principally for his own enjoyment, but he started being a better student, in fact many people believe he was the brightest student in world history. You may know him, his name is Albert Einstein. Is there some connection between Einstein’s intellectual prowess and his playing the violin? Einstein said there was as he is quoted in his biography by G.J. Withrow. In speaking of the power music had in helping him with theories such as relativity he said: “It occurred to me by intuition, and music was the driving force behind that intuition. My discovery was the result of musical perception.”

 A similar paradigm can be seen in 1776 in the hot and humid months of June and July in Philadelphia. Thomas Jefferson was charged by John Adams and Ben Franklin to draft the document that would become the Declaration of Independence. Being the most eloquent and congenial member of the continental congress, Jefferson was drafted for the chore despite his protestations. For weeks he labored at night in his second story spartan apartment, without much success. His landlady testified to hearing him pace and right and discard his writing. After days of frustration and the inability to put on paper the ideas of his assignment, he sent a message to his wife Martha in Montecello to send one of his violins to Philadelphia. When the violin arrived, he embarked upon writing, becoming frustrated, playing his violin, and then resuming writing. He continued this system continually and was able to complete the assignment in what must be one of the most important documents of American history. Again, was there a connection between Jefferson’s articulatory skills, and the playing of his violin? The three previous stories all relate to the same instrument, the violin, but the principle that governs this phenomena can be enacted by any instrument or by singing, dancing, reciting poetry. Exactly what is happening? BRAIN BEAT We are living in the age of the brain. Beginning in the 60's we became interested as a nation in physical exercise and it’s effect on the body. President John F. Kennedy urged the nation to be more physically fit. Then came the era of diet awareness. As a nation, we became interested, if not obsessed, over diet and it’s influence on the state of health. Within the last decade, with the emergence of new medical and scientific information, we have become fascinated with the function of the brain. We have the benefit of scientific data to help us understand how the thinking process works. We have known for some time, that the brain is divided into two hemispheres, right and left. Traditionally, the right hemisphere is the portion of the brain that governs ideas, while the left hemisphere governs physical matters, such as walking, talking, writing, etc. The corpus callosum, the membrane that divides the two hemispheres acts as a window through which the synaptic responses pass back and forth between the two hemispheres. When a thought is conceived in the right hemisphere, it has no influence of action or communication if the synapses cannot get into the left hemisphere. It is possible that there are those, like Einstein, Jefferson, and the boy cited above, who have intelligent, if not genius level thought processes who cnnot move the thoughts into the left brain to articulate those thoughts. How many of our population are prisoners in the right hemisphere of their brains. The playing of an instrument, dancing, singing, reciting poetry, all have something in requires the integration of both hemispheres to function. With the aid of the technology of Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) we can actually see the electrical impulses in the brain and witness the full integration of the brain when participation in musical activity takes place. In short, when we sing, dance, recite or play an instrument, we are drawing upon the compete resources of brain activity. It stands to reason then, that those who participate in these activities on a regular basis will transfer that brain activity to other activities as well. It seems as if Einstein was a “prisoner” in the right hemisphere of his brain, unable to convey the profound thoughts he was having into the left hemisphere in order to communicate them. Others like Edison, Disney and Jefferson seem to share the circumstance. Would history have had the same conclusion in the case of the three individuals cited above been the same without the use of playing the violin?

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