Resource limited to what we believe we need to know about music in our daily life, based on our experience and readings.

Contents: Why care about music? - What is so special about playing in a band? - In my experience... - Can anyone try and play in a band?

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Why care about music?

Music comes to our ears in different forms. Some natural form of music include bird songs. A place without a sound, especially a bird sound does 'sound' eery to me. What about you?

The French saying 'La musique adoucit les moeurs' seems to imply that music somehow makes people and customs softer, that music can indeed play a relaxing role. Beyond popular 'wisdom', one can witness the role of music in history and daily life:

  • how the blues developed by the Black slaves in North America,
  • how tribes celebrate to the sound of music,
  • how religious services incorporate music,
  • how military forces invest in their own military professional bands,
  • how live music was brought to the military forces in times of war and despair,
  • how communities gather around events incorporating live music,
  • how people still gather around a camp fire and a guitar, ...

These are only observations you can also make.

There is something in music which touches us - depending on the type of music and the period of your life or the time in the day!

What is so special about playing in a band?

There is an article from the Sydney Morning Herald dated 20 June 2018 which captures most of these benefits. Read more ...
Find below an extract (to cater for the day when the above link will break! :)
When a child learns a musical instrument, a brand new world of possibilities opens up to them.
Yes, they learn how to read and play music, but they also develop a special set of skills that enables them to not only play in their school band or orchestra - but to work in any group setting.
They learn how to work with and listen to others, to co-operate to achieve a common goal , and to take responsibility for their contribution to that goal.
Above all of this is the opportunity to learn how to enjoy and relish the sound of the music and to learn to love the making and playing of music for its own sake.

To learn to love what we do is surely one of the greatest things a human being can experience.

In my experience ...

... as a migrant moving to Australia in 1991 with a few years of music in the bag, being able to join the Botany Bay community concert band in Sydney, and contribute in that way to a common sound for common purposes, being totally accepted for making that sound, for taking responsibility for the part I was playing in that global sound, was pretty special and really enjoyable as the overall sound was enjoyable too.
The conductor was competent and easy going too and I was lent an Alto sax for the duration of my contribution to the band.

25 years later in 2017, I came back to music and after many hours of practice on the Tenor sax, I was welcome to the local band of Cowra, NSW.
Although I felt like an imposter at first given my low skillset, I soon learnt to contribute at my level and to slowly progress.
There was never any pressure put on me to 'perform' beyond my ability. All band members contribute to whatever they can. And being a part of an overall nice sound is a pretty special experience.

Can anyone try and play in a band?

As long as a band is physically available in the vicinity, and the instrument of choice is not one which is only limited to one musician eg most bands count only one drummer :(, it is worthwhile approaching the band and asking whether they would run free band lessons and lend a good quality instrument - as long as you can care for it, of course.
In Cowra NSW, as at June 2018, one of the brass band members teaches the beginners as as group and other adult players join in too. This is a friendly setting. Instruments can also be lent. So in this situation, music is made available to all who wish to commit to the band, commit to care for the instrument, and commit to practicing. No fee attached.
Try and find out what is available around you and have a go. Work at your pace. Listen. Be a part of a musical team and you are likely to love it.

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