Music (Not) On My Mind

During my personal training sessions, my trainer likes to tease my lack of pop music knowledge.

“Who is singing this song?” she asked.

“Janet Jackson?” I guessed.

It was Whitney Houston. And that was probably the closest guess I’d had in weeks. Who actually cares enough about One Direction to be able to identify them anyway? I did recognize Pentatonix.

But the funny thing is she couldn’t understand how much I phase out the music while we workout. Apparently most people are really picky and only one want a specific genre, or songs above a certain tempo. I pretty much ignore it the whole time unless she asks me.

This is one of the things I think also excluded me from continuing in music after my first (terrible) couple years of college. Music didn’t inspire me at a subconcious level like it did the best performers. I had to zone out – to concentrate on my breathing and my fingers and my tongue – to make my saxophone do what I expected it to do. I wasn’t good enough to feel or experience while actually doing the thing.

When I’m working I prefer to put a few songs on loop instead of listening to full playlist. Makes things easier to ignore. I also find myself returning to familiar things I’ve enjoyed more times than I can count. If I pick something new I risk breaking my trance when something too interesting comes up.

Maybe I need to start balancing this out though. It’s not that I don’t like music – it’s just that appreciating it is a whole separate thing. I have to set out to listen and analyze – it’s not anything I can multitask. But 20 minutes of music and nothing else couldn’t be  a bad thing.

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