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What Do People Do...

Bat Goddess 10 Apr 18 - 10:09 PM
Andy7 11 Apr 18 - 03:32 AM
Will Fly 11 Apr 18 - 03:34 AM
Raggytash 11 Apr 18 - 03:46 AM
Will Fly 11 Apr 18 - 04:06 AM
Mo the caller 11 Apr 18 - 04:36 AM
leeneia 11 Apr 18 - 09:52 AM
Rob Naylor 11 Apr 18 - 10:11 AM
GUEST 11 Apr 18 - 10:14 AM
Mr Red 11 Apr 18 - 10:40 AM
GUEST,Morris-ey 11 Apr 18 - 11:14 AM
wysiwyg 11 Apr 18 - 11:49 AM
Joe_F 11 Apr 18 - 06:00 PM
GUEST,.gargoyle 11 Apr 18 - 06:19 PM
Bat Goddess 12 Apr 18 - 05:07 PM
GUEST 13 Apr 18 - 04:03 AM
GUEST,Jon 13 Apr 18 - 09:37 AM
wysiwyg 13 Apr 18 - 06:49 PM
Steve Shaw 13 Apr 18 - 08:22 PM
Mooh 14 Apr 18 - 06:41 AM
keberoxu 14 Apr 18 - 09:19 PM
Mr Red 17 Apr 18 - 03:51 AM
Andy7 17 Apr 18 - 06:15 AM
GUEST,Mathew 19 Apr 18 - 01:08 AM
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Subject: What Do People Do...
From: Bat Goddess
Date: 10 Apr 18 - 10:09 PM

What do people do who don't have live music in their lives?

I come from a Midwestern (Milwaukee) Germanic family where everyone played an instrument and sang. We sang at home, we sang in the car, we sang in church. I was in the junior choir in the Lutheran church across the street. My next door neighbor and I sang "solos" together. We sang in elementary school, too, in the 1950s...out of a songbook called "America Sings", I think. My first introduction to folk songs.

I met my first husband in a coffee house in the late Sixties. He sort of played guitar and I sort of played guitar. "Our" song was "Leaving On A Jet Plane". But, ultimately, we never did the same material. It's a wonder that marriage lasted ten years.

Then I met Tom Hall (Mudcat's Curmudgeon) and got immersed in the songs of the British Folk Revival. I didn't start performing with Tom until the mid-1980s, but the weekly Press Room Anglo-Celtic trad session was going strong by the summer of 1982. I spent every Friday late afternoon and evening with friends, singing and enjoying the music. We got together for music parties, too -- music, food, and beer. Not to mention the camaraderie. Tom and I started the monthly sea music singaround in January of 2003 and a slightly different group of friends got together in a pub to sing shanties and forebitters. Tom took over the helm of the Portsmouth Maritime Folk Festival in 2005. What makes this festival special is the intimacy -- that the performers are right in the audiences' laps.

There are also house concerts to go to and other performances in cozy informal settings and friends' gigs at pubs, libraries, and restaurants. Why would anyone want to go to a concert in a stadium with thousands of strangers, where you can't see the performer without binoculars or large video screens, and where the performer doesn't really know you even exist? I like my music to be PERSONAL.

Singing and being together with people making music has gotten me through all of the many rough patches in my life. So many studies have shown how important music and singing is to both physical and mental health. As I've found out during this past year's struggles to find venues for the weekly and monthly sessions, what both the musicians and our audience miss most is getting together WITH SINGING AND TUNES on a regular basis. Everyone I've talked to has said it's impossible to choose what they missed more when we had no place to meet -- the music or getting together with friends.

So...what DO people do who don't have live music in their lives on a regular basis?

Linn


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Subject: RE: What Do People Do...
From: Andy7
Date: 11 Apr 18 - 03:32 AM

I couldn't agree more! Having also had music threaded through my life, from learning to play violin a child, through buying a guitar with my first pay packet, and singing in choirs, to being involved with folk, it's difficult to imagine a life without.

Sadly, so many people these days are convinced that they shouldn't open their mouths to sing at all, and that only those who are 'good' enough to make it onto TV talent competitions should ever sing. Sadly again, this is also reinforced by the almost 'de rigueur' pained expressions, and hands over ears, from family and friends, whenever someone does start to sing. The same, incidentally, is true of dancing.

Some years ago, at the end of a longish taxi ride during which we'd been discussing this very thing, and the driver had expressed a real sadness that music had never been a part of his family's life, I gave him, as a generous tip, the money to buy himself a cheap ukulele, so that he could start out playing and singing; with the request that he give the money to charity if he chose not to buy the uke after all. Maybe he just smiled to himself and pocketed the tip. Or maybe he shrugged his shoulders and gave the money to a charity. But I like to think that he did buy that uke, and introduced himself and his family to the endless wonders of making music together.


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Subject: RE: What Do People Do...
From: Will Fly
Date: 11 Apr 18 - 03:34 AM

In a sense, Linn, there's a wider question there - and I' know exactly where you're coming from vis-a-vis music.

When a person's life is filled with a particular activity, the lack of that activity - for any reason - can create huge frustrations. I've known men whose whole life revolved around work, and the thought of retirement held terrors for them. The husband of one of my wife's friends has early onset dementia and as been told by his doctor that he can't drive any more. He loved it, and the news had him in tears. I'm aware that music can be a welcoming group activity, but to lose anything that is close to your heart is, frankly, heartbreaking.


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Subject: RE: What Do People Do...
From: Raggytash
Date: 11 Apr 18 - 03:46 AM

It's strange after playing and singing for almost 50 years in the past 8 months I have completely lost interest in doing so. I have been coerced into playing/singing but I haven't done it from choice and honestly I've not missed it.


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Subject: RE: What Do People Do...
From: Will Fly
Date: 11 Apr 18 - 04:06 AM

That's understandable, Raggy. I've also had long-standing passions that interest me no longer. The big difference is whether it's voluntary or forced on you.


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Subject: RE: What Do People Do...
From: Mo the caller
Date: 11 Apr 18 - 04:36 AM

Will, I agree. For many here musicmaking is what connects them to people. A little world, a community, as well as the music.
For me playing (a bit, badly, but being part of it) singing in a choir (still having to work at that but I get a little glimpse), and DANCING when a roomful of people are in tune with the music and are moving together.
The music and the connection.


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Subject: RE: What Do People Do...
From: leeneia
Date: 11 Apr 18 - 09:52 AM

The question on the floor is "What do people do who don't have live music in their lives?"

I can suggest one answer. Read a few Nero Wolfe detective novels by Rex Stout and you'll note that Nero Wolfe seems to have no music in his life whatever. No record player, no concerts, no instruments. His assistant Archie goes dancing at night clubs with Lily Rowan, but that may be merely to please Lily.

So what do they do instead?

eat, go to baseball games, raise orchids, solve murders, occasionally fight thugs, drink beer, ogle dames


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Subject: RE: What Do People Do...
From: Rob Naylor
Date: 11 Apr 18 - 10:11 AM

Linn: So...what DO people do who don't have live music in their lives on a regular basis?

I have music in my life on a semi-regular basis. I listened to music avidly when young, but only attempted to play or sing myself for a couple of teen years, and then not very seriously (learned the usual 3 chords). Dipped in and out of listening for the next 30 years or so, but only took up guitar and attempted to expand the chord repertoire about 9 years ago.

I don't practice enough, I don't get to enough sessions/ singarounds/ open mics, by a long chalk. I've made a lot of new friends through music.

BUT:

I also rock-climb, and love that too, and the friends I've made through it. It's not very compatible with playing guitar, as you split your finger ends, break your nails etc regularly.

I also do hill-walking/ mountaineering/ winter mountaineering, including full-on ice-climbing and alpine routes. Never have enough time for that.

In addition, I'm pretty well addicted to British Military Fitness, doing about 5 sessions a week.

On top of that I run. Mainly half marathons, and 10k races. Plus obstacle course races like Tough Guy and Nuts For Judgement. I've recently graduated onto AEE "Special Forces Weighted March" races (which are like Orienteering races, but typically 30-40 km long, carrying 50-60 lb weight over really foul boggy terrain). Crazy thing to start doing at 62....I'm the oldest by at least 10 years on most start lines).

I also like to travel with my wife, seeing new places and enjoying new foods and drinks.

Trying to fit all this in with a full time job that involves periods of travel to strange and faraway places means that NONE of these activities get anything like the amount of attention I'd LIKE to give them....but equally I don't want to prune any of them down further than I have already (had to make some compromises on what I do, for domestic reasons).

I can't wait until I can afford to retire and get a whole lot of extra hours in my weeks to devote to the stuff I really love doing, whether it's music or something else.


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Subject: RE: What Do People Do...
From: GUEST
Date: 11 Apr 18 - 10:14 AM

Music has sort of come and gone with me over the years. Sometimes it has been "all consuming", sometimes I've gone a while without and sometimes like the past few years (probably starting around the time I closed folkinfo in 2012) I've not really been that sure where I am with it (a problem possibly compounded by lack of ability to get out much but there [in between things like getting a lovely new tenor banjo]) are times I think it's time to move on...

Whatever, there is always something else to do and (I'd think in common with most others here), my interests are not limited to just music.


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Subject: RE: What Do People Do...
From: Mr Red
Date: 11 Apr 18 - 10:40 AM

dance to live music,
program computers listening to speech radio,
feed the ducks with the crusty ends of the loaf,
photograph the minutia of the town,
record old people talking about the old days,
photograph the graffiti of the area,
run 4 websites listing places where music is played/danced in a wider area hereabouts
make videos for historians and also of canal restoration.

But I don't make music, I am a drummer...................


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Subject: RE: What Do People Do...
From: GUEST,Morris-ey
Date: 11 Apr 18 - 11:14 AM

I suspect they enjoy other things that they enjoy. Liking music is not that special unless that is your thing...


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Subject: RE: What Do People Do...
From: wysiwyg
Date: 11 Apr 18 - 11:49 AM

To the original question--

We're dealing with this lack now because we're in a long term but temporary situation, where we don't want to make it ourselves and there's so little here within an ethical gas-drive. We really struggle to come up with other fun/entertainment (because that's what we need right now, not participation).

So we:

Enjoy recorded music
Look fwd to hockey playoffs
Plan a target-shooting date
Go to local movies
Enjoy TV film and music
Keep packing
Go outside

~S~


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Subject: RE: What Do People Do...
From: Joe_F
Date: 11 Apr 18 - 06:00 PM

Sing. Bang on the piano. Then (unless you are dead) you will have live music in your life.

If you want company, move to Boston. There are at least half a dozen monthly opportunities to sing in the area, no talent needed.


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Subject: RE: What Do People Do...
From: GUEST,.gargoyle
Date: 11 Apr 18 - 06:19 PM

I questioned a friend, about leaving, regarding myself.
We both are conservative and Christian.
ME - Who will I be? This is me...It is all that I know

FRIEND "Just Be"

Sincerely,
Gargoyle

Whisper words of wisdom.....be, Be, BE! You have been put here for a purpose. ACT


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Subject: RE: What Do People Do...
From: Bat Goddess
Date: 12 Apr 18 - 05:07 PM

Every musician and singer I know who is part of the sessions I run or come to hear us (and maybe sing along) or who participate or come to the Portsmouth Maritime Folk Festival or other festivals, house concerts, musical gatherings, etcet etcet, ALL have other major interests and avocations besides folk music. Often it includes other flavors of music as well.

I have more interests than I care to take the time to enumerate, although a number of them are history or folklore-related and thus somewhat related to folk music.

The majority of the music I'm involved with, though, is small scale gatherings and, mostly, participatory. (Even just joining in on a performer's choruses.)

Music and singing, in particular, has been shown to be curative as well as therapeutic.

But so many people's exposure to music is only via radio (including online), films, iPods, YouTube, MP3s, CDs.

People enjoy singing (even if they think they can't sing). We live in a society where we don't often have an opportunity anymore (unlike the early 20th century) to sing in public with friends (or even strangers) except, perhaps, in church. And fewer people attend church. And if one walks down the street singing, people have a tendency to cross the street and not make eye contact. Folk music, sea music, and some pop music encourages people to join in the choruses, not worry about how they sound, and enjoy the benefits of the "good vibrations".

I guess my question REALLY is, is it the music or is it the connection to other people that's most important? The question isn't what people do INSTEAD of live music, but how do they navigate life without it.

Linn


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Subject: RE: What Do People Do...
From: GUEST
Date: 13 Apr 18 - 04:03 AM

Are you saying you can't envisage getting through life without live music?

If so, the question is essentially about yourself and only you can answer it but it does suggest a very narrow viewpoint and a lack of empathy for people who live a different life to your own.

Many people 'navigate life' without any music at all, live or recorded, and they get by just fine.

There are many roads.

Having said that, perhaps more live music in peoples' lives would make the world a better place.

Or, no live music would achieve a similar result.

It's a fucked-up world and its been created by people who play and enjoy live music as much as by those who don't.

It would probably be the end of the thread if I mentioned that Hitler was a huge fan of live opera and attended regularly :0)


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Subject: RE: What Do People Do...
From: GUEST,Jon
Date: 13 Apr 18 - 09:37 AM

My answer again would be that it has varied. I have gone out just for the music, just to meet others and some combination of both.

In my current circumstances, the opportunity to get out of the house for a night out is a motive and one that doesn't exist for me with other things.

I'm not sure how I'd fit that in with my otherwise non existent social life but I'm a bit of an odd one, enjoying talking to others but also liking a lot of time on my own. Sometimes it's just the "change of scenery" I like.

Of course I don't usually do a lot of talking when out for music, most of it is just get on with playing. My favourite situation is a session which I can just (mostly) drop in to or (if I feel like a break/short chat) out of with others always keeping the tunes going. It's unpressurised and adds relaxation to the attractions. Don't always get that of course, eg. as one of the few strong (by this event's standards - I'm not that good) players at a do I went to recently, you can feel an obligation to help add a bit of stability and start more than you really want to...


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Subject: RE: What Do People Do...
From: wysiwyg
Date: 13 Apr 18 - 06:49 PM

Whether it's the music or the people may vary by personality type. Example-- We totally enjoyed a great music night last night when a top notch band came to our little burg for an evening, but the people were of scant interest except to watch-- but that's just me. I like being surrounded in a safe space with just 1 or 2 people to visit with-- preferably just the one. Hubby.

~S~


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Subject: RE: What Do People Do...
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 13 Apr 18 - 08:22 PM

I had to stop playing three years ago because of hearing loss. I'd battled on for a good while before the realisation finally hit me that I couldn't carry on. It was quite a relief, actually. I'd been struggling for at least a couple of years. But I'm happy with my lot and I can tootle away at home as well as ever!


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Subject: RE: What Do People Do...
From: Mooh
Date: 14 Apr 18 - 06:41 AM

I've replaced most of my live music with recording. I love the process where I can control everything.

A year ago I quit two good working bands due to hypertension, tinnitus, and just generally feeling my age. Load in and load out at gigs was wearing me down, never mind the actual performing and pathetic pay. I've also taken a hiatus from the church choir. This leaves me with my guitar/fiddle duo which only gigs infrequently, though I would welcome more.

Of course, I play music with my students daily, but it's not the same as jamming with pros.

There are lots of lapsed musicians around. They seem to enjoy the civilian (if you catch my drift) side of live music. I suspect there's also a lot of hobbies, TV, movies, social networking, sports, games, first and second jobs, and maybe partying in their lives, just like with non-musicians.


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Subject: RE: What Do People Do...
From: keberoxu
Date: 14 Apr 18 - 09:19 PM

Oh dear me, Guest.
You are correct about Hitler, of course:

"Ich habe in meinem ganzen Leben,
eine solche Isolde nie gesehn nie gehört!"
So spoke Hitler to a soprano named Germaine Lubin. Scared the heck out of her.
Lubin is quoted reminiscing, above, in an out-of-print book
called "The Last Prima Donnas" by the late Lanfranco Rasponi,
whose previous claim to fame was being publicist for Renata Tebaldi.
The book has its faults; it is at its best when Rasponi, as interviewer,
gets out of the ladies' way and just lets them do the talking.

Germaine Lubin is unforgettable. What was a soprano with a French name,
you ask, doing singing the female lead in Wagner's "Tristan und Isolde"?
As I recall, Mme. Lubin had mixed ethnic ancestry, and there must have been what the French would call a "pied-noir" from north Africa
in generations past; she declared that her mixed races included the Berber/kabyle/Tamazight people who inhabited the north African Mediterranean before the Arabs moved West.
Were there Germans in her ancestors as well? I forget.

Whatever, French in birth and career though she was,
Lubin had voice and temperament suited to Wagner, and sang it.
And yes she sang for Hitler.
The trouble that got her into... well, you have to read the book.
She ended up on trial after WWII, had to prove that she worked long and hard
for the French Resistance, and was not a collaborator after all.
She makes Maria Callas sound like a spoiled brat by comparison.

Where were we?

GUEST, who prefers anonymity,
sounds like the one with the lack of ... I'm not sure what.
I reckon Bat Goddess is less bothered by the judgmental comment
than it bothers me.

In Bat Goddess's OP I see no judgmentalism nor lack of empathy.
I observe a carefully judged sharing of one's own experience in the first person.
I don't see any proselytizing. Preaching to the choir, if anything.

As for me, the word "personal" counts for a great deal,
both reading the OP and thinking of my experience.
Sorry, I have to keep my own experience private here
as I feel very sensitive indeed about it, there is suffering there.

In short, I envy Bat Goddess the unqualified joy of her testifying.
And what's wrong with joy?


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Subject: RE: What Do People Do...
From: Mr Red
Date: 17 Apr 18 - 03:51 AM

Does anyone respond to shared Fakebook posts that masquerade as quizzes or games? Harmless fun? Or data gathering? Tick all of the above.

They are trawling for data on you - don't people realise? My usual response is to answer something like "Russia, Cambridge Analytica, Clones" to friends and family after a question like "who are the three most........."

I doubt that the Folk world and the 'Cat is a big enough target, but there is information to be gleaned even in this parish. see above.


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Subject: RE: What Do People Do...
From: Andy7
Date: 17 Apr 18 - 06:15 AM

The fact that Hitler liked music is a total irrelevance.

If an evil dictator enjoys a sandwich, does that reflect badly on the bread?


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Subject: RE: What Do People Do...
From: GUEST,Mathew
Date: 19 Apr 18 - 01:08 AM

I've only just recently turned 24, so I realize that my frame of reference is more narrow than some, but there has never been a point in my life that music has not been all-encompassing.

My grandfather played fiddle, guitar, accordion, piano and bass. He taught me the basics and I loved hearing him sing until he died about ten years ago.

His death thrust me even further into music, and I started learning to play many of the same instruments he did (Fiddle, guitar, accordion) and others he did not (Concertina, harmonica, mandolin, ukulele) Music also helped me put his death in perspective.

Now I play at pubs, I play at parties and I play at folk clubs. I listen to music all night at my office job.

My point is that when I read of people turning away from music when they get older, I become terrified.

How do you not feel as if there is a gaping hole in your entire life without music?

**I realize I may get slammed with comments about my youth but I'm ready**


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