what is music?

Yesterday at uni we had a little discussion about John Cage’s “4’33” – whether it was music or not… But what it music anyway? How is it defined? In a way it could be “all or nothing”, what one calls music another one might call noise. Can silence be called music? And what would music be without silence?

When thinking about this (and asking my good friend Google for help) I came upon some great definitions that I wanted to share with you!

Music is wanted sound.  – Larry Austin  

Music is the organisation of sound and time.  – Elliott Schwartz

Music is a kind of counting performed by the mind without knowing that it is counting.
                                                                  – G. W. Leibniz, The Monadology (1714)

Music…is an invisible dance, as dancing is silent music.
                                                                  – Jean Paul, Levana (1807)

Music is the occult metaphysical exercise of a soul not knowing that it philosophises.
                                                                  Arthur Schopenhauer

(from: http://www.williamepowell.com/pdfs/DefinitionsOfMusic.pdf

Music is so much more than just the sound! It’s life, culture, meaning, emotion, power, identity, pleasure, inspiration… it’s an an universal language that talks to our minds, our hearts, our bodies, our souls… it’s a door to imagination that lets our spirits travel, a whole vibrant world of understanding what otherwise cannot be explained, and to me it’s an essential life force and a source of self-expression and relating myself to the world. What does it mean to you?


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