Wednesday, October 19, 2011
So Much Music, So Little Time
The book The Mozart Effect is on our bookshelves in the front room, but I’ve never read it. But no matter what it says, I do believe that listening to music as a child has a huge impact on who we become. So yesterday, our baby attended his first piano concert.
By “concert” I mean that he laid on the floor on a blanket by the piano and I played a few goodies for him. First was John Lennon’s "Imagine," my favorite song and the one I felt must be his opening number. Second I played the theme from Terms of Endearment, another song I have memorized and can play easily. Next I opened the easy piano book I played in junior high and the first song I saw was "Don’t Cry Out Loud," a song whose title I found ironically amusing to play for a baby. By this time he was starting to get restless, so I finished with "Memory," thinking the rocking melody might entertain him.
I wonder what my musical choices will do to my son’s development. As I played, I wondered if my occasional mistakes would affect his ear as an adult. Or would they make him more attune to the nuances of music?
Other music he has been introduced to during his life thus far? They played Classical and show tunes in the hospital while he was there. In the car I play either the Classical station or my Marc Cohn CD. The other day I introduced him to my cousin’s band BR5-49, and he showed his appreciation by sleeping through the whole thing. As he grows, he will get to know Billy Joel and the Beatles, who we always listen to during any car trip of 30 minutes or more.
Will these songs bring back distant memories for him when he’s an adult, the way James Taylor or Dan Fogelberg does for me? Those albums played on the record player in our living room when I was a kid, and they always feel like home.
The list of music to share with him keeps growing…Gershwin, Big Band, Richard Rogers, Fred Astaire, Broadway, Chicago, the Eagles, maybe some Jon Bon Jovi and Journey…so much music, so little time!