Wednesday, May 27, 2009

The music curse

"I was asked the question 'What was the first single you ever bought?' and I thought 'I have never bought a single or an album'. Even as a teenager!It's strange. I don't like listening to music. People find it hard to understand that." (From The Enya Realms / Quotes)

I had this thing bothering me in my youth. For some reasons I didn't listen to music before my eighteen. I didn't have a favorite kind of music, I wasn't a fan of any music group, I simply would occasionally listen to what would randomly play on the radio or the stereo because someone else would turn it on in the area. I liked music, a random song would possibly play which I would find attractive but I never listened music on my own in my whole childhood. And it mattered. It mattered because every time someone asked me the question "What music do you like?" I would become uneasy with the particular one.

There were reasons I avoided listening to music. When I am thinking about it, it's hard to describe. And it sounds silly. I think that to go in a store and buy a particular CD and listen to it or to turn on the volume of the stereo and select a specific music was something I felt "shy" about. I don't know if "shy" is the right word. I actually felt "shy" about a lot of things in my youth even the simplest ones and I was aware and constantly described this feeling to myself. I think one of the reasons might be that I was so sensitive to music that I felt uneasy or vulnerable, especially if I didn't listened with my headphones but others in the room would be able to listen my preference and maybe it could also reveal my emotions.

For most, music is mainly a kind of social connection which defines to which group of people do you belong. Somebody once asked me which is my favorite group or kind of music and when I told him I don't have one he said that this is not normal, that all people are fans of at least one kind of music and a group. For me, listening to music was something that I envied because there was that curse that didn't let me listen to something that was emotionally appealing. I was at a dead end. And I was also frustrated by that view where it's supposed that everyone listens to music as everyone likes sex or pizza.

After several years I got my first truly own PC while MP3s came into play, meaning that I could stay alone in my room and listen to music through my headphones without all the burden that made me avoid it. Much later, USB players also made it possible for me to listen while at road or as I was sleeping. I also explored various music styles and people sometimes tell me they adore my vast music preferences. I find it funny now when I meet people who have a very narrow music taste, even disregarding other genres, especially those who criticized me in the past for not listening to music. Maybe if music wasn't so emotionally overwhelming to me but just a cold social meme that defines group belonging then I would also be a fan of one group and would prefer only one music kind :P

Gladly I am more than that. My old psychological condition I'd like to call here 'the music curse' has to do with how overwhelming music can be for me. I am quite sensitive to it which can be good and bad. Which means that music has a true meaning for me, more true than those who think that I have to listen to it in order to be normal or to belong to a specific group of people. This is the first time I openly speak about this to anyone (And not liking or avoiding to listen to any kind of music for any reasons is not as uncommon as I thought).

I am glad that Enya said that quote for once. For I have read it and it totally shattered my past insecurity about that. Thank you!


nuclear said...

I also never listned to music much before the MP3s, and I never bought any albums at all.

Music was something I didn't find all that interesting to spend money on it. During the last years at school a friend of mine loaned me a couple of CDs, and I realized then, that I really like metal, so I started ripping those CDs and storing the tracks that I likes as mp3s in my hard drive to listen at my leasure.

Then peer to peer took off, and now whenever I accidentally listen to something I like, I tend to download and keep it. So I ended up with quite a lot of music in the end :)

Marvin said...

I also didn't like listening to music when I was young.I couldn't understand people who were spending money on cd's. Actually I laughed at them!
But eventually I understood that it wasn't my fault.It was normal not to like what the media were selling, cause that wasn't music.
And when I discovered true music that I like, I cannot live without it!

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