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Ways Music Brings Us Closer To Truth

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Published: Thu, 27 Apr 2017

The quotation from Pablo Picasso said, “Art is a lie that brings us nearer to the truth.” By art, Picasso meant anything that was of a creative form; painting, literature, music, dancing, etc. The way the word lie is being used is not necessarily they way we would usually imply lying. Lie is used here instead of more like a way or path, or even substance that once we’ve been engulfed in we can see the truth for what it really is. Truth can be seen in a similar way, it’s not necessarily the ‘truth’ but a realization of something that we didn’t know about beforehand. The art form that I plan on using to validate Picasso’s quote is music. With music, you can become closer to the truth through, emotion, the language and words that are being used, with perception. Music, whether being Rap, Classical, or Rock all has a message hidden within the words or instrumentals that are being used.

There are many ways in which music brings us closer to the truth, regardless of what genre is used. If a person has just had heartbreak, and choose to listen to love songs repeatedly emotion begins to arise. For a girl, of course she might be in tears and while listening to the songs the thought of her past relationship will come up. But it is possible that by listening to the songs, and the words being said that she might come to the realization that there are other people out there and that the break-up might not have been as bad after all. For a boy, he might use music to help motivate him for a big game that he is about to play in. The language being used could be seen as encouraging words that allow him to be brought up and well prepared for what is ahead of him. For anybody music can motivate, alter feelings or opinions on a matter, or help someone out in a situation. Music can be seen as a second conscience if wanted to be. Going back to the example of a boy being motivated before a big game, he is he listening to the song. “Heart of a Champion” by Nelly, the lyrics that are used in the chorus—“Ain’t no way they can stop me now Nelly

Cause I’m on my way, I can feel my ring coming

It’s the blood of a champion, pumping

Deep inside my veins, too much pride to be running

I’ma get what I can and more, even if

My blood, my sweat, and my tears don’t mean nothing

It’s the heart of a champion (it’s the heart of me)

(It’s the heart of a..) in me”. (http://www.azlyrics.com/lyrics/nelly/heartofachampion.html) These lyrics can be seem very motivational and almost identical to his thoughts about the game that he is about to play in.

“There are many theories regarding when and where music originated. Many agree that music began even before man existed. Historiographers point out that there are six periods of music and each period has a particular style of music that greatly contributed to what music is today” (http://musiced.about.com/od/beginnersguide/a/intro.htm) The six periods of music include: Medieval/Middle ages, Renaissance, Baroque, Classical, Romantic, 20th century. “Music during the middle Ages is characterized by the beginning of musical notation as well as polyphony, there were two general types of music styles; the monophonic and the polyphonic. Renaissance means “rebirth” and in music this period brought about many changes in the way music was created and perceived. The word “baroque” comes from the Italian word “barocco” which means bizarre. The Baroque period was a time when composers experimented with form, styles and instruments. This period saw the development of opera and instrumental music. The music of the Classical period, which spans from 1750 to 1820, is characterized by simpler melodies and forms such as the sonatas. The piano was undoubtedly the primary instrument used by composers during the Classical period. Historiographers define the Romantic Music period from the 1800 to 1900. It is characterized by using music to tell a story or express an idea, and the use of various instruments including wind instruments. Melodies are fuller and more dramatic. Music during the 20th century brought about many innovations on how music was performed and appreciated. Artists were more willing to experiment on new music forms and used technology to enhance their compositions.” (http://musiced.about.com/od/beginnersguide/a/intro.htm)

Lyrics were actually poetry that is written by a person who has been through a situation and felt the need to write about it. The artist, or songwriter can been see as the person who is setting up the lie to help others come closer to the truth. If the writer has been through a hard time, the music he or she is producing helps those that are listening to realize that everyone is human and we have all been through it. Music can also sometimes be seen as therapeutic, or your own personal therapist. With these kinds of lyrics, they can be seem as almost autobiographical, a prime example for autobiographical lyrics is: “Grandpa” by Of Montreal. The lyrics in “Grandpa” are describing what an older man who is obviously a grandfather, does in his daily life. (http://www.metrolyrics.com/the-autobiographical-grandpa-lyrics-of-montreal.html) Lyrics can be calming and help achieve smoothing flows and words that are encouraging, sometimes that is all a person needs to calm down or to perceive something correctly. But what happens when some music doesn’t have words but just pure instruments how does a person still become motivated or come to a realization with just pure music?

Classical music does not use words, but instead uses instruments to get its point across. How is it possible that with no words, someone can become nearer to the truth? This is where in WOK; emotion and perception comes in. If the tempo in the song is very fast and low, it could make the person realize how angry they are about something, as to where if the tempo is slow and not has low they can begin to calm down. Though the speed and melody that comes from classical music, it can change someone’s emotion after listening to it. If a person is distraught or very upset, they can listen to a song have their mood instantly altered. This type of music can even help them realize that the situation they are in is not as dire as they perceived it to be. If someone was going into an art museum, and Mozart was playing while people were viewing the art, some would say that it was very calming and allowed them to understand the art being viewed even better. This example shows, that music with or without words can still alter a person’s feelings toward something or someone. There is a chance that with the classical music being played, that it could irritate and become very disruptive to a person in a art gallery. Maybe this person cannot stand classical music, or just likes the idea of absorbing the art without any noise being made in the back. Yes, it is easily seen how music can alter a person’s feelings toward something, but it doesn’t determine whether that alteration is negatively or positive.

One genre of music, that may not fully validate Picasso’s statement, is Rapping. Not of all but most of the rappers talk about all the money, women, and cars that they have. One of the well known rappers of today that go against this statement is Lupe Fiasco. Thus there is still a big issue with a lot of young men who listen to this type of music, because they believe this is the ‘life’ and that that is actually how the rappers live. Most rappers who actually do all that talking about all the stuff they have, are not speaking of truth. This is where the statement can be seen as invalid. The rapper is telling a ‘lie’ but he is not bringing the persons listening to him ‘closer to the truth’ but deeper in non-realistic world. On the contrary, there are some rappers who do live the life they speak of, and someone’s non-realistic world could be another man’s real reality. However, not ever rapper speaks of lies; some tell stories that could be seen as almost fables during their songs. With the reference to fables I mean that the songs could be seen as stories that have a hidden story within it. Therefore, not every rapper should be seen in a negative light.

“Gil Scott-Heron (born April 1, 1949) is an American poet, musician, and author known primarily for his late 1960s and early 1970s work as a spoken word soul performer and his collaborative work with musician Brian Jackson. His collaborative efforts with Jackson featured a musical fusion of jazz, blues and soul music, as well as lyrical content concerning social and political issues of the time, delivered in both rapping and melismatic vocal styles by Scott-Heron. The music of these albums, most notably Pieces of a Man and Winter in America in the early 1970s, influenced and helped engender later African-American music genres such as hip hop and neo soul. Scott-Heron’s recording work is often associated with black militant activism and has received much critical acclaim for one of his most well-known compositions “The Revolution Will Not Be Televised”. On his influence, Allmusic wrote “Scott-Heron’s unique proto-rap style influenced a generation of hip-hop artists”.” (http://gilscottheron.net/about/)

Music is a big part of my life; I listen to it more than I watch the television. It allows me to get more focus; it motivates me, and allows me to realize things that I would not have been able to on my own. I listen to all genres but my personal favorite is RnB. With RnB the music isn’t too fast or too slow, and the messages that are normally being portrayed go along with real life situations, and quickly help me to recover some of the ‘truths’ that I need about life.

“Art is a lie that brings us nearer to the truth.” Music is an art which is a lie that brings us nearer to the truth, by stating that in my opinion I believe that music is one of the biggest art forms that helps bring people closer to the truth. Music alters people’s opinions and feelings towards things and replaces them with those of the words they heard in the song. Music is everywhere. Even when you wait in an elevator there is music, allowing the ride to be smoothing and relaxing. Music is in the dentist and doctor’s office while you’re waiting so you don’t become so antsy. Just while walking in a grocery store if you listen, you will hear music being played while you are grabbing for that box of cereal. Music surrounds us. Music is in nature, the birds singing, the wind blowing, the sun shine-would allow a person to have a good day, as to where if the birds weren’t singing, the wind was blowing harshly and the sun behind clouds due to the fact of rain the emotion you would feel would differ. Music brings us nearer to the truth everyday without us even knowing it. Music tries to do its job but it’s up to us and how we interpret it whether or not the job was done correctly.


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