The Meaning of Music
: A Ripple in The Water

What is music? Well, according to the English Dictionary music is, “the science or art of ordering tones or sounds in succession, in combination, and in temporal relationships to produce a composition having unity and continuity; vocal, instrumental, or mechanical sounds having rhythm, melody, or harmony.” This is what is defined in the Merriam-Webster's Collegiate Dictionary. This means music is simply a combination of sounds in tune to make rhythm, melody, or harmony; or being not necessarily all of these things and so stating songs are fake on basis of bias interest of music is not a legitimate or valued argument. It is more or less a one-sided opinion without seeing reason in all of the issue in a debate.

Why rap music is considered music? Well, I am not a fan of rap music but I will not let my dislike for it out way my reasoning and logic. Rap music has rhythm, even if the words are degrading women and slandering other rappers into controversial gang wars. It has rhythm and legit beats that make it music, however the vocals lack musical tone but the words flow as a rhythm and this makes it music. When you hear a poetic poem being spoken out, your ear catches the rhythm of that sound being spoken; this being music sadly. Rap is just one example of people stating that a song or genre being “fake.”

Another genre would be Industrial music, is it music? Industrial music has rhythm, melody, and harmony. Industrial music is the sound of recorded instruments or digital sound’s being placed by “combinations” which in syncs them into “compositions,” that in turn is music. Sounds that according to what is defined in the music that make melody, harmony, rhythm is simply music despite person bias opinions. However, there are Industrial songs out there that have no rhythm or sound combinations that make it music and is just a bunch of misplaced sounds that is classified as noise; there are rap, rock, and other genre artist who lack vital means to be considered music. Anyone who can read sheet music or has a musical ear can catch this.

A quote that caught my attention was, "Since I have always preferred making plans to executing them, I have gravitated towards situations and systems that, once set into operation, could create music with little or no intervention on my part. That is to say, I tend towards the roles of planner and programmer, and then become an audience to the results" -Brian Eno, (Alpern, 1995). This means to listen to one’s own work to find flaw in the rhythm, melody, or harmony of the composition.

My personal opinion is as long as the music, by definition, brings rhythm to the heart or melody along with harmony then that is all that truly matters. Music is the chemical that binds us all together as a whole rather than a segregated mass. Music is like rain, each drop makes a ripple in our hearts as it does in a body of water; the body being us as a whole, this is my personal opinion. Music is timed, but real music is not bound… it knows no boundaries. No ocean, no distance, and or time will ever stop the power of music when set forth within our hearts. Our heart beat is music, our ability to feel the vibration of wind is music, and our chemistry in the eyes of a lover is music. Just because we do not hear sound, doesn’t mean that there is no rhythm, harmony, or melody in our expressions. Thus, in conclusion, we are music.

By: Harry K. Flanagan

Thank you to Neil Shumate from OOTB; and thank you to family, friends, and classical music.

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