The Norman Transcript

February 15, 2013

‘If music is the food of love, play on’


The Norman Transcript

NORMAN — Whether we realize it or not, music permeates our lives. Wherever we go we are surrounded by piped in music or background music of some sort — be it a mall, a store, an elevator or in the car next to yours thumping out the music until your chest hurts.

At work, I have the classical radio station playing. It soothes the inner dragon.

Imagine what a movie would be like without the soft melody for a moment of contemplation or the crescendo of music in a battle scene or love scene. Without the music to sweep you forward, you would actually have to pay more attention to what is happening and what is being said.

Some people simply cannot stand the sound of silence. They need background music of some kind, whether they are at home or in there cars. While others feel that music enhances the moment.

For example, any task will go smoother and be less of a chore with music. You can dance and hum your way through mind-numbing copying at work or dusting and moping at home. Whatever necessary chore you perform will be easier with music.

Put something on that has a good beat and give yourself over to total uninhibited fun that will leave a smile on your face, at least until someone catches you shimmying and whistling while you work.

The owner of our company caught me singing and dancing while I copied documents. He greeted me and I came to an apologetic and screeching halt. “I’m sorry. I just felt like singing.”

“Singing is good,” he said with a smile and walked away.

Bet he doesn’t come across that too often.

In anticipation of Valentine’s Day, a local radio station compiled a list of “the greatest love songs of all time.” But love songs tend to be very personal. They make your heart sing and can create warm to toasty moments.

One song mentioned was Ravel’s Bolero. You know the melody that was played in the movie “10.” The lovers run toward each other in slow motion carried on the wings of the Bolero melody.

There are two problems with that particular song and image. First, Bolero makes me think of camels moving slowly across the desert rather than lovers doing the 50 yard dash toward each other. Second, just once, don’t you wish that after their long run the lovers would crash into each other and fall down on their posteriors gasping for air? Now, that would be realistic.

Music provides food for the soul and body. It has the ability to not only surround you and sweep you along, but it can enter the body and take you and your senses to breathtaking places you may never want to leave. Such music is far better suited to lovers than the vision of camels moving across the desert sands.

The music of love should rise and fall, surging to a crescendo. One such song (which could be called “body music” because it enters your very being and stirs the body and the soul to greater heights) is Rachmaninoff’s Piano Concerto No. 2, “Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini.”

Another is “Unchained Melody” which also was on the station’s list. It is a haunting tune that seeps into your pores and stays with you until the last note. If you prefer a more primal tune “The Point of No Return” from “The Phantom of the Opera” could fit the bill nicely. It is a bit wicked and sensual, capturing your senses until your entire being soars.

No matter what your choice of a love song or melody may be, without music in your life you are half your whole.

Elizabeth is a freelance writer and author. Her novel, “The Dionysus Connection,” is available on Amazon or ask your bookstore to order it for you. Visit her website, www.elizabethcowan.com.

For local news and more, subscribe to The Norman Transcript Smart Edition, or our print edition.