Liquid Velvet

March 24, 2008
Music is the sound a soul makes in a climax of emotion; it is a desperate wail to the world, a spirit aching to be heard and understood, a noise that echoes with truth and rings with clarity. A singer simply wants to leave an imprint on this fleeting human world, to make a handprint on the face of the earth before slipping out of existence. Their tool, music, can not be harnessed by one person no matter how strong their resolve. The powers of music can never truly be contained or captured, but nevertheless hundreds of artists spend their entire lives chasing the illustrious idea of a ‘perfect song’. Once in a lifetime, perhaps once per generation, an extremely gifted artist manages to manipulate the essence of music long enough to perform a magnificent and memorable piece. Those are the truly talented artists, the Michelangelos of the modern age.
In an honest song, a real and passionate record of the artist’s deepest emotions, the words can strike a chord inside every human heart. The instruments fade into the background, overwhelmed by the poetic words strung together with heartfelt twine. The beat doesn’t matter, the accoutrements do not matter. What matters most about music is its overwhelming ability to revive your soul. Misty fingers reach down and awake your spirit, coaxing and prodding with painfully true words and a voice like liquid velvet.
The melody is gorgeous, to be sure, but the instruments are used to ensnare a listener. Music notes stick like burrs inside people’s heads, capturing their attention, but the real beauty is in the lyrics. Insightful words enhanced by a gifted singer can warm a broken heart, soothe a crying baby, and empower a downtrodden man. A song says, in three minutes, all the things we are not yet sophisticated enough to express by ourselves. We are not yet strong enough to give voice to our greatest fears, our most painful memories, or even our happiest moments. A singer sings for himself, to reach a point of inner peace that can only be attained by cleaning out tucked away pains and sorrows. But at the same time, a singer sings for all of us out in the world not yet able to sing for ourselves. One day, we will all be strong enough to express our emotions that freely; we may not all have dulcet tones, but the raw desire to freely release tender emotions is dormant in everyone. One day, but not today. For now, us unenlightened souls must grasp onto as much music as we can hold, twisting the silvery strands around our fingers and tucking them into our hearts.
There are many different styles of music, some more exquisite than others, but one can not judge another person’s form of creative release. We may not understand it, but we have to appreciate the hidden message behind the words no matter how twisted and convoluted that message might be. Hopefully, you can identify with one particular style yourself. You know when you find your music niche; the words sound less hollow than in every prior song, the voice luminous and guiding, the message painfully obvious and yet beautifully original.
We sing to know we are alive, to reaffirm our existence in this world by slicing the soul with a tempered blade. If we allow ourselves to horde away our feelings forever, to only deal with what we can see with our own two eyes, than our existence on this world is laughable at best. We were not put here to merely exist; we are here to shine, to elevate the world to the best of our ability, to reach our potential and then surpass it in a flame of glory. Music is the spark, the dying ember that worms its way out of the drowning fire; it catches the wind, and buries deep inside every human spirit. We fan the flames every time we cry, shout, smile, laugh. We may not all be singers but we all carry music within our souls, and it waits, with bated breath, to be let free.

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