Where does music come from ?
Written by Eddie Gordon
English music journalist, a producer, DJ and music business personality.
Here are my two simple explanations of how music is created.
The distribution of music is the exchange of information (energy). The information recorded is delivered for sale as Vinyl, Tape, CD, MP3, Streaming etc. In the past it was analogue information (tape etc) these days its Digital information. When played on the Radio or TV or Streamed, if the information recorded is deemed good enough it will be accepted and energise people to buy it and even physically dance to it.
The basics have not changed from listening to the 78rpm Bakelite recordings of the 1940's to the MP3/WAV music file of 2018 and the new era of streaming. It's an exchange of information. Information that can have emotionally life changing effects on people around the world...
The components of music. I have told this simple explanation to hundreds of people, including Keynote speeches at conferences for the BBC in Europe and North America. I will probably still be telling people when I'm ready for my last supper.
The two essential components of music are Rhythm and Melody. Take them both away and what do you have left ? Silence.
Seriously, anything that forms a note is in the Melody camp and anything that hits a beat is in the Rhythm camp. So take away the beat then take away anything that hits a note and you've got silence.
Rhythm and Melody - you can have one without the other but on the whole music is a combination of the two. So where do Rhythm and Melody come from? Please allow me to explain.
Rhythm - You and your body are a mass of mathematics and rhythm. Everything balances and symmetrically. You see, hear, breath, eat, beat, walk, talk, love and dance (some do) in rhythm. Everything we build is in rhythm or measurements, even cooking. Our sporting abilities are formed around rhythm.
The first thing you learn to do independently as a baby is to crawl and then walk - in rhythm.
If you tried to walk three left steps then one right step fast you'll fall over. So rhythm is not a mystery, we are all rhythm. We build things in rhythm around us or our houses would fall down and our cars would not drive - we are totally formed around our ability to understand and create rhythm, it is what separates us from the animal kingdom, plus the fact that we have fingers and thumbs to build things made of rhythm.
Melody - This is an easy one to get your head around. Melody is the very first ‘language' between yourself, as a baby, and your mother (or father).
For the first 20 months of your life your interaction with your family is soothing, cajoling, noises in melodic tones/voices. If an adult growls at at a baby it will cry.
If a mother "la la la's" the baby warmly it smiles whether that mother is Aboriginal, Eskimo, African, Chinese, Norwegian, Japanese, Brazilian or any human mother.
Our first language is love with melody and that ‘language' is Universal.
We all speak the same language the world over for nearly the first two years of our lives. Which is why we associate melody so strongly with affection. Hearing a great piece of melody people often react physically "oh I love this song". Its a primal memory and is the "Melody Of Love" as Donna Summer once sang.
There's a very logical reason for the classical-chill-out/ambient music revolution - we humans will always need our 'fix' of melody. It is our very first language of love..