Music connections: Receptive listening, part 1


I found this symbol “Chai Notes” on the internet.  It is formed from the Hebrew letters “Chet” & “Yud” forming the word Chai which means life and combined with eighth notes.  Notes can be a symbol for music.  Music is spoken about in many religious writings as something that connects us.  Connecting to & with music can provide a richness to our lives. For many people “Music is life and life is a song.” There are four ways I like to think about making these connections:

  1. Receptive (listening & responding)
  2. Re-creative (performing pre-composed music)
  3. Composing (creating a musical product such as songs, lyrics, music videos as well as improvisations)
  4. Learning (gaining knowledge about or related to music)

This entry will highlight our receptive connections.

Think about the places where you hear music.  Stores, radios, passing cars, in commercials, movie soundtracks, your mp3….the list goes on.  It might surprise you just how much you do respond to some music.

We respond to music in both observable and non-observable ways.  Our breathing and pulse rate may change in response to what we hear.  Maybe you start to tap your toe or move a particular way with the music.

The music may affect our perception.  Our concentration may change.  Certain emotions and images may come to mind.

Try a little experiment this week.  The next time you are in a store take a minute and actively listen to the music.

  • Pay attention to the style of the music,
  • The pace of the selection,
  • The activity level of those around you,
  • How the music makes you feel.

Feel free to share your experiences in the comment section.  Know that some places are purposeful in the music they play while others randomly select music according to what an employee likes.  Which do you think you experienced?    And, be watching for how to use this information to enhance your receptive music experiences.

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