Music is a powerful drug.
Music has a profound impact on my mood.
Ever since the invention of the iPod, possibly the Walkman… I’ve manipulated myself. More accurately, music has.
I can be in Vietnam listening to Skepta and have an intense nostalgia, for some reason I’ll want if not need to be back in London. I can listen to Hans Zimmer and adopt the scene of a film, tension, happiness, optimism, sadness… almost powerless to resist. A$AP Rocky will have me in the Range Rover, driving through the night sky, whirring lights like ghosts in my rearview. My language changes, speech patterns, attitude and on the surface, it not underneath it all; my mood.
Writing and reading; they leave me alone with the page, lost in my imagination, an intense focus that is hard to find and easy to lose. Video, perhaps because of music, creates a sensory overload that looks beyond the page, its collaborative. Writing, reading is lonely. Lonely is not always bad. It stems creativity as much as it detracts. As beneficial as detrimental and leaves me in a purgatory wondering how to spend my time, who to spend it with, what to spend it doing.
So what is a mood then? A mood, if so easily changed in an instant. When does an instant become a moment? How to impact on a moment and create a temporary illusion; make temporary more permanent. How to turn one to another, how to snowball, how to evolve?
Music manipulates me, I manipulate others, maybe I’m just the body it travels through to carry out its duty. One of many.
Every meeting I have had since perhaps the invention of the iPod, every date, every funeral, wedding has been manipulated by my earbuds. The fact that funeral comes before wedding in my mind as I write, may say a little more about me than it does about my taste. Perhaps it says something about my musical taste, my need to experience, to connect.
Pick up a good headset. Pick up a bad one. Sink into ‘Massive Attack’ whilst looking out over the night lights of any major city, (if you can.. from a rooftop) without questioning your choices in life, what you are worth, why you exist. Without feeling for a brief moment that you’re the tortured soul that is, in that brief moment, scarily self-aware.
Try and drive along the Sicilian coast, in no car in particular, with Perry Como in your tape deck and not feel like you are back in the glory days of Europe. Before it was accessible, before it was an Easy Jet flight, before the Azure was on sale sixteen weeks a year for the world to invade.
The world isn’t ours anymore, it isn’t mine, nor yours but for a moment, you can have it all over again. Music will help you capture time, a camera will help others. Leave the selfie stick at home and listen hard.
If not for music, I might have connected with the narrative of life more, but then again, without music, I might not have connected at all.