The Point of Music

Do you ever wonder what the point of music is? You cannot see, taste, smell, or touch music. It cannot provide nourishment, strength, shelter, light, warmth, protection, or any other fundamental necessity. So why is this intangible arrangement of sounds to a rhythm so loved by people on this earth?

In all continents, countries, and cultures music is there. Throughout the past music had its place: the ballads of medieval minstrels, sea shanties of pirates, fight songs of warriors, psalms of biblical times even! About every event in a person’s life has music: birthdays, funerals, sleepovers, prom nights, ballet recitals, road trips, all these things would have far less meaning without music. In most all religions and religious services music has its place there as well.

Clearly in human society music is important, but why is that? What is the point of this arrangement of sound?

I did some research to find out scientifically why music is so enjoyed. To summarize, I came to this: Music, when enjoyed, causes dopamine (the “happy hormone”) to be released into a part of our brain that deals with stimulation called the striatum. So basically music makes us happy because it stimulates part of our brain. Why does it stimulate? There must be more of an answer to the point of music than stimulation. I’ve never heard a musician say there main goal as an artist is to stimulate their fans brains, (honestly that sounds a really creepy). So what is the point of music? What is music’s purpose?

Music is

The point of music is connection. It is emotion. It is relationship. Music is a tool used by all peoples to simply communicate their feelings. Music is a universal language. If you played a minor and a major chord to a complete foreigner I can guarantee they could tell the difference in mood. Though every Gaelic lament I hear I know none of the words, but I still know it’s sad.

Music can express the deepest feelings and the most complicated emotions. Music can show the fiercest rage, the most blissful love, the harshest sorrow. Music is a thing of relating. If one cannot find the right words, odds are there’s a song that can help you express your meaning.

Music connects our mind with thoughts, our body with rhythm, and our souls with emotion. Music can join multiple souls together. Perhaps music is the sound our soul makes, but to know that I’d have to be God…(I’m not, in case you were wondering 😛 )

So that is the point of music, in my eyes. Do you see music differently? What are some songs that connect to you most?

I hope you all enjoyed this post. Have a happy and musical Thursday! -Gems of Genres

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(Part 2) A Night at Poor David’s Pub with Emmet Cahill

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Recently while visiting a friend in Texas I had the pleasure of seeing Emmet Cahill, String Theory and Ireland Harber perform live at Poor David’s Pub in Dallas.

For those of you who don’t know Emmet Cahill is a fantastic, classically trained, Irish tenor and former member of world renown singing group Celtic Thunder. He began music at the age of four with lessons from his father and then went on in life to receive his formal training and a Degree of Musical Performance from the Royal Irish Academy of Music, (not many can put that on their resume!). After three years of world touring with Celtic Thunder, Cahill resigned to pursue his solo career, which lead me to this wonderful evening.

After an amazing opening act led by Nathan Kenedy and Jesse Ramirez, it was time for Cahill to begin. Now, to start I was more excited about visiting my friend than I was about seeing Emmet perform, this lead me to sorely underestimate his talent.

With Seamus Brett on piano, Cahill began his set with “Go the Distance”, immediately I was swept away into the song. On top of his extreme grace and control one of Cahill’s best qualities is how he acts with his song, he felt it, and in return every audience member felt the song as well. This especially showed during “Some Enchanted Evening”, as the whole room became an old black and white film with Cahill as the star.

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One thing I loved was how genuine Cahill was as he interacted with the audience. We were asked to all join in on “Spanish Lady” where you could see he was truly enjoying the moment; And after someone suggested he sing “My Irish Molly” he replied to them with a charming grin, “Ohhhh. Molly?” his Irish getting thicker, “…Well, only if you all clap with.”

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By the sixth song of the night in my notes it literally says, “Song 6: ‘The Book of Love’, At this point I am enjoying it too much to write. Go see him!” His concert was so good I just wanted to enjoy it, and I most certainly did!

It was during Cahill’s moving rendition of “Isle of Hope, Isle of Tears” that I myself was moved to tears, and I want you readers to understand I have never cried because of a song. But as lovely and sad as “Isle of Hope, Isle of Tears” was the one song that most moved me, and I feel was Cahill’s best, was his beautiful performance of the Les Miserables song “Bring Him Home”. In that moment Cahill really was Jean Valjean pleading to God for Marius. For the audience members he wasn’t just acting, he was. Here I had chills and I cried even more.

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He broke the mournful beauty with “When Irish Eyes are Smiling” only to bring us back to tears with a final performance of “Danny Boy” (If you were at this show and are wondering, yes the person blubbering behind you was I).

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Perhaps Cahill has missed his calling as an actor…but than again if he were I couldn’t have seen this amazing show. His talent is not only in his gorgeous voice but also in his moving and truly Irish way of telling the story. If Cahill is ever in town near you buy tickets to his show. You will completely enjoy your evening!

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Thank you Emmet for the wonderful show and well done.

Click here for part one of A Night at Poor David’s with String Theory and Ireland Harber.

You can find Emmet Cahill on Facebook, Twitter and at his website www.emmetcahill.com/ (where you should buy some tickets :D)

A very special thank you to the lovely Amanda Grace for letting me use your pictures! All pictures in this post are hers. If you readers are in the Salisbury, Maryland area and need a photographer get this woman to do your pictures! You can find Amanda Grace and her photography business Gilded Isle on Facebook, Instgram @glidedisle, and at gildedisle.com

Dé Luain sásta-Gems of Genres