Tuesday, May 29, 2012

All of Me // Tuesday for the Muse

I debated whether or not I should post another song from The Piano Guys, but in the end I couldn't help it -- this is the song I've been listening to the most in the past two weeks, aside from Dementia, one of Owl City's new songs (which I love but which hardly seems appropriate for an inspiration-themed feature).  

I'm an odd duck when it comes to music.  Unless I'm in a specifically experimental mood, I tend to only listen to the music that I already know I like.  As this blog testifies, I've been happily listening to music from The Piano Guys for the past month, but there are still a number of songs of theirs that I haven't yet heard.  On top of that, I don't normally go for just-piano pieces.  While I like the piano well enough, and there are some things it does better than every other instrument, there's something about the sound quality that doesn't draw me in as much as, say, strings or woodwinds.  

One late night, as I was getting ready for bed, I decided I wanted another Piano Guys song.  I thought about the ones I had already listened to a number of times on Spotify, but nothing jumped out as being 'the one.'  (Yes, I buy my music on a need-to-have basis.)  On a whim, I clicked on the last track of the "Hits" album, All of Me, and before I was 10 seconds into the piece, I knew I was buying it.  

The expression in this song is deep and thoughtful while being blissfully happy, and it has that dancing/flying element I mentioned in my last post. To me, it speaks of discovery, of a jewel summer and a deepening friendship, of a hesitancy that slowly gives way to pure romance, of passionate creativity.  Whenever I listen to it, I see the face of someone with that look that says they're not in control anymore, and wouldn't have it any other way -- a blissful surrender to the amazing.  And what could be more amazing than God?  So yes, for me it is a faith-song.  Whenever people look at Christianity with fear -- fear of being trapped, fear of loss of control -- I wish I could have them listen to this song, and show them that it's so much more like this

Fear not: I will refrain from posting more Piano Guys songs until I absolutely cannot help it anymore.  In the meantime, enjoy.   

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Anthem of Hope // Tuesday for the Muse

So I missed last week's Tuesday for the Muse because my life was absolutely swallowed up in graduation-induced insanity.  My apologies.  I didn't feel like posting Pomp and Circumstance in order to make a point about what my life was like.

This week I want to share one of my favorite songs from one of my favorite artists, Ryan Farish:

This song is another makes-me-feel-like-dancing song, but that because it also makes me feel like flying.  There are two different types of dancing, I think: dancing where you just want to move however you can, and dancing where your soul is uplifted and you dance because you cannot fly.  This music inspires the latter. 

Anthem of Hope is on my inspiration playlist because when I'm trying to come up with ideas and scenes, I need music that is both high-energy and full of emotion.  I have plenty of music that has great energy but no direction, and I have a lot of movie soundtracks that have some beautiful emotion that occurs in brief 10- or 30- second intervals (usually couched within several minutes of music that, frankly, is rather boring).  But Ryan Farish's music is perfect because he finds a good melody and stays with it for the whole piece, long enough for my writer-brain to work through a complete thought. 

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

O Fortuna // Tuesday for the Muse

This week I got my Galaxy Player 4.0, which, aside from its many other wonderful features, automatically creates a playlist of your most-played songs.  Right now the song in second place (behind Peponi, which I posted about last week) is, yes, another song from The Piano Guys.  This poem is centuries old and was set to music in the 1930's by the German composer Carl Orff.  While the original version is pretty epic by itself...

...what The Piano Guys did to the song was just too amazing.  

For me, race cars don't really do the song justice, so I recommend you play the video, close your eyes, and let the music suggest its own theme.  

Lately I've had characters on my mind (both mine and other people's) that are centuries old, and whenever I play this song I see an immortal character wandering through ages, seeing the rise and fall of empires and religions, hope and love and so, so much loss.  Such a character would have more reasons than most to complain against fate, as did the writer of O Fortuna so many centuries ago.  

(And yes, it's almost Wednesday.  I know.  Sometimes surprise visits from delightful relatives happen, and blogging just has to wait.)

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Peponi // Tuesday for the Muse

Today, I'm going to tell you something a little different: don't watch the video.  I mean yes, you can watch it, but I recommend that the first time through you just let it play with the window minimized.  When I tried to show this video to my sister, she wasn't able to really appreciate the music on the first go-round because of the 'weird dancing.'

This is, of course, The Piano Guys' cover of Coldplay's hit song Paradise.  Due to the somewhat eclectic circles I run in, I generally don't get much exposure to whatever music is currently popular.  I came across the song because I watched this awesome Doctor Who fanvid (warning for general spoilers for Series 5 and 6):

The song's been on my Spotify playlist ever since, but I haven't gotten around to actually buying it.  However, I can't get over the gorgeous instrumental arrangement in the Peponi version.  Every time I try to listen to it while doing something else, I inevitably stop in my tracks so that I can fully absorb it.  I feel like Peponi taps into a little more of the passion in the song, and because the words are in a language I can't understand, it's perfect music for writing.  

Speaking of writing music, I've been on a complete Piano Guys binge this week.  Their music is gorgeous (and will probably reappear in Tuesday for the Muse sometime soon).  If you're looking for instrumental music with great energy and emotion, I urge you to check them out.