Welcome all to this Blog called The Art of Listening. This Blog is connected to a Youtube Channel, and Podcast of the same name. I hope to see you all there as most of the material there will be directly related to everything here. Sign up for my newsletter, and you will be notified when everything gets posted!
What is The Art of Listening?
When we go to a live musical performance – be it a small jazz group, a large symphonic performance, or a great rock band – there are many things at work that are providing that moment of enjoyment and inspiration.
The most important in my mind is the music of course; it is the beauty and meaning behind the notes that drives us to listen at all. But I think there are other things at work as well. Embedded in the experience of attending and performing a concert, is what I think is the most important aspect: Listening.
Why should we listen … to music?
Listen to music? Isn’t this what we can not help but do if there is any kind of sound in the room? Ah Watson, you can hear, but that is not Listening. This is not your every day conversation.
As a performer, this is listening to anywhere from 3 – 20 other discrete musical lines, and be able to not just merely play with, but integrate your line with the others. And as you hone your listening and technique to higher levels, and the music begins to coalesce as one with your colleagues, you realize that in order for this to work you must let go of your opinions about yourself and others, and ultimately become a mirror to what they are saying. You must put yourself in their place, and align what you do with what they do. This is the Art of Listening.
But what about the audience?
The audience can experience this as well, but in order to achieve this level of Listening, we must learn more. The more we learn about what goes into creating and performing, the more we will realize that music is beyond our differences, and it is truly a universal language.
And when we learn to Listen and apply that to our own lives, we can then develop a profound understanding and empathy for one another. When we truly Listen, we let go of our own concerns to place ourselves in another’s hands.
We will return to live performances, and we will be there for the music. But when we witness this level of Listening in performers – to the level of Compassion – and then achieve it for ourselves, it can serve as an inspiration and an example for what is possible in this world. Listening with Compassion is needed today more than ever.
Why call this website The Art of Listening?
We are called The Art of Listening because here you will learn about Listening to the music you love. Perhaps you will spread more peace in the world as a result. Think of this place as a refuge from the world of noise. We will perform, explore, and discuss all kinds of music, and the creation of it in-depth. The Art of Listening is a fulfilling art for yourself, and I sincerely hope you come back for more!