Yesterday, I wrote about my (re-)discovery of my lack of scientific knowledge and limitations as a profound thinker.
Today, I must admit to a further weakness, which I recognized/remembered while watching an excellent BBC program on the history of the symphony.
I cannot begin to understand how anyone can turn the notes of the music scale, C-D-E-F-G-A-B-[C] (how can there be two different Cs?), into Beethoven’s 9th. I would have as much trouble with Row, Row, Row Your Boat. And, why is an orchestra made up of those instruments, in those numbers, and in that seating arrangement?
Fortunately, I am able to appreciate and enjoy the genius of others. Of course, not all “music” falls under this description. Rap is not music, it is bad noise, and it takes little genius to cobble those “lyrics”.
I recall three attempts during my life to be “musical”. My mother forced me to learn to play the piano, at which I balked. I refused to practice and disappeared at lesson time. She wisely gave up. In junior high school, some fool suggested that I learn to play the French horn. I do not recall the circumstances, but it surely faltered on the lack of a horn and my parents’ inability or unwillingness to pay for one. The final foray was as a member of the choir in private school. This was the result of peer pressure to join my mates. What else was there to do at boys’ school? From the best I can remember, this also did not last long. Since then, the only instrument I play is one that makes music for me…
Prior to writing novels, the author enjoyed a multifaceted career: from decorated combat aviator to advertising professional to global communications director of a major consumer brand. He has traveled the world and met sports, film and television stars, political leaders, and royalty. He graduated from Middlebury College, is married, lives in Germany, and has two grown children.