Tuesday, May 10, 2011

the soundtrack of indigenous life

i watched balinese theater (the barong). i listened to the orchestra, playing with indigenous instruments. i was trying to catch a melody, a tune. but i couldn't. at times it felt cacophonous, with no one instrument 'carrying the tune'.

i thought maybe indigenous music was meant to be that way. music was meant to play like a background, mimicking the sound of nature. there really is no one melody, but just a harmony of tones, playing like a soundtrack of their lives. the music plays even as other tasks are accomplished, or conversations are made. it does not demand attention.

i just got used to listening music, as opposed to hearing music. listening is a focused activity, with a tune, a central melody, with a beginning, and an end. i pay attention to it. i drop what im doing. and listen.

which is so different from indigenous music. which is why i have yet to fully appreciate it.

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