Eric Willstaedt wrote:
>Isnt this the whole basis of The music of the future by wagner, the use
>of leitmotifs and whatnot? he had little use for vocal language as no
>one can hear the words over the orchestral sounds anyway. the interesting
>thing would be if music could still speak to us if we hadnt any preconceived
>notions as to what you hear. for example, you hear minor mode music and
>you dont think of sunny fields and picnics or where you hear something
>that sounds like someone scratching their nails over a chalk board and
>we would have similar associated images come to mind.
To some extent is this not the notion of the doctrine of affections?
but perhaps without providing a great amount of specificity. I am
reminded of something Copland wrote...to paraphrase..."If you ask me if
there is meaning in a specific piece of music I will reply yes. If you
ask me what it is, I cannot say."
Also, as Copland suggested, the best way to listen to music was on its
own terms, does that mean that music can have meaning apart from any
superimposed narrative or biological reference.
I am reminded when I was asked what is your favorite Beethoven. I
responded by pointing to the late quartets. I was then asked why I liked
these best, to which I responded, "it was as though he was reaching for
the infinite." Ok, I am not a big religious guy or new age, but it really
seemed to me that there is music that really does seem to reach beyond
what we might easily be able to quantify...or is that just my own