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Music and Its Influence

In: Film and Music

Submitted By bangdaddy52
Words 973
Pages 4
Kaplan Online University
HU300: Arts and Humanities: 20th Century and Beyond
Professor Lisa Dimitriadis
Mr. Karl Gibson
April 15, 2011

When I think of music and how it influences my life I come up with many different types to consider, and at various times. Music I associate with my childhood are various songs heard during family picnics, family gatherings, and times or events of this nature. I grew up as a child in the 1960’s and listened to what my parents were listening to. Songs like Finger Popping Time by Hank Ballard and the Midnighter’s, I got a Woman, Ray Charles, The Great Pretender, Sam Cooke and Think by Aretha Franklin, who is said to be the Queen of Soul. These songs were of good times, happy times, they made me feel that everything was well in the world, despite the horrific turmoil in the U.S. caused by the Vietnam War. I still look back at those times as some of the best times in America and my musical experiences. I think the music then reflect my childhood experiences of sensibility, freedom, fun and laughter. My adolescence year’s music seemed to change a bit in America as well as for me and what we listened to in our home, as well as on my own. I was never much of a rebel so I guess music in my adolescence years was more of a way for me to fit in. Songs in the late 70’s were changing over Woodstock was over as well as the whole Love & Peace movement. We were bringing troops home from Korea and the long dreaded Vietnam War was finally coming to an end. People were rejoicing and ready to try and love again. Songs were about men loving their women and some even inspirational and uplifting like Bridge Over Troubled Waters. This seemed to bring comfort to many, myself included, I discovered cuddling and girlfriends and it showed in all of the songs that were being made and played on the radio. Songs like You’re All I Need to Get By, and My Girl.

Though this was a very good thing I think my most comforting type of music has always been, and probably will always be Gospel. Most of the R&B singers then and now, established their Roots in the Church. It was pretty much a condition of being Black in those days, since most families came from humble beginning in the South and moved Northbound. It was expected of you to go to Church on Sunday’s, this was part of being what we knew and were taught, in order to always be good Christians. As early as I can remember I have always been inspired by Gospel Music and its roots, meanings and inspiration. Songs of jubilation, and hope, have always been associated with this type of music. I know personally for my certain songs have always been there to give me comfort and most of them still do. I know when I was going through an extremely tough time in my life and making some bad choices, one song then and now reigned supreme. The song is titled We Fall Down written by Kyle Matthews and sang by Reverend Donnie McClurkin. The song was soft and melodic and had very few words but couple a soft melody with the narrative of a very powerful speaker and there you have it. The lyrics simply say we fall down but we get back up, for a saint is just a sinner who fell down, to this day that song brings tears to my eyes and even now thinking and writing it I get emotional. I was using drugs, making bad choices and my life was a living hell. This song gave me comfort and strength that I can get back up and I shall never forget that. Whenever I am stressed, misguided, depressed, or feeling disappointed, all I have to do is sing that song and I know all is well.

Gospel Music just seems to have that effect on my son and room-mate seems to get out of my way when I put it on, I guess because as much as the slow melodic tunes sooth me, the upbeat ones give me strength. I can put on songs like Fred Hammond, Jesus be a fence all around me every day. The song is very upbeat and up tempo, it’s somewhat fast and exciting. The lyrics are Jesus be a fence around me every day, I want you to protect me as I travel along the way, I know you can I know you will, and you’ll fight my battles If I just keep still. I can listen to these types of songs and work all day and it seems I never get tired. One Christmas Holiday I can remember making fruit baskets for all 12 of my guests, trimming the tree, decorating the entire house (inside) and starting my dinner all in a matter of maybe 8 hours and did not seem a bit tired. When I think of what music I associate with happiness I have to say Gospel for as much as it can make me sad, it also uplifts me and makes me happy, I can attribute this to there being so many variations and types of songs within the realm of Gospel, it’s the one type of music that does it all for me.

References:

Janaro, R.P. Altshuler, T.C. (2009). The art of being human: The humanities as a technique for living. New York, NY: Longman
Retrieved April 15, 2011 from: http://www.nutsie.com/playlist/70%27s%20R%26B/627706 Vietnam Timeline retrieved April 15, 2011 from,
http://www.landscaper.net/timelin.htm#time%20line

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