This week, I spent a lot of time in my car and therefore had a wonderful opportunity to listen to music. My selections ranged from a lecture series on late Beethoven Quartets to Prokofiev’s Sonata No. 8, to Steve Reich to Chopin Nocturnes and then to the Beethoven late quartets, particularly the Grosse Fugue. These choices depended on what mood I was in:
- Did I want to be stimulated or provoked or soothed?
- Did I want to relax and feel restored?
- Did I need something to contemplate or to help me ponder the meaning of life?
- And what about staying alert on a long drive?
Music is a powerful way of tapping into one’s emotions and that is why people love to listen to music.
Interestingly, my thoughts dovetailed perfectly with my most recent class at Yale on marketing for musicians. Admittedly a huge topic, marketing is essential in this day and age since most musicians just starting their careers are not likely to have the money to hire professional publicists or managers for marketing help.