Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Can you hear that?

I have read that the sense of smell is closely connected to the brain, that the right scent can transport me back to my grandma's house.  But my experiences have been stronger with music.  The right golden oldie and I am 6 years old and the radio is playing in our living room.  There are quite a few sources of American popular music on the worldwide web and most old tunes can be found and played.

When we went to my 50th all-male high school reunion five years ago, one of the alums had created a CD of the leading songs of the year of our graduation.  That was a thoughtful gift.

Many of the tracks we had heard recently because of our great-grandson.  As a toddler who often needed a nap, he was sometimes too wired to fall asleep.  But a nice long car ride would put him to sleep.  We wondered whether before he nodded off, he would enjoy some of the tunes we had enjoyed decades earlier.  So, Lynn downloaded these tracks and made a CD of them to play in the car.
Don't Fence Me In - Autry
Jamaica Farewell -Belafonte
Zip-A-Dee-Doo-Dah {'Song of the South' 1946}
Heigh-Ho {'Snow White' 1937}
I Wan'na Be Like You (The Monkey Song) {'The Jungle Book' 1967}
Swinging on a Star-Crosby
(How Much Is) That Doggie in the Window- Page
Day-O (Banana Boat)- Belafonte
The Marvelous Toy
The Purple People Eater
Jambalaya (On the Bayou)
Jump Down, Spin Around -Belafonte
Mockin' Bird Hill - Page

My favorite music is classical, especially Mozart, Beethoven, Vivaldi, Verdi.  My favorite listening time is when cleaning up the kitchen.  That activity fits nicely with the sort of compositions that play longer than the 2 or 3 minutes of the songs listed above.  However, many other types of music enrich me, too.  "Maori Songs" featuring Kiri Te Kanawa and The Great Sentimental Age of Civil War and post Civil War songs, basic Christian hymns, E Ala E by Israel Kamakawiwo'ole, the wonderful Hawaiian singler, all fill a niche in my musical head.

A professor of music on our campus specializes in movie soundtrack music.  From knowing him, I became sensitive to the music that lets me know the heroine is in danger and the dragon lurks just ahead.  When Lynn earned her master's and PhD in instructional technology, I picked up the importance cinematographers attach to the sound track of a slide presentation or movie.  As one of the results of a Google search on "uncopyrighted music" says, with more and more people using YouTube and GarageBand and similar tools and outlets, the demand for uncopyrighted music is growing vigorously.  YouTube is a good source right now for hearing many different pieces of music.

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