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The Musical Life: Reflections on what it is and how to live itBy W.A. MathieuPublished by ShambhalaPaperback; 235 pages
Excerpts from the Preface:
Being musical does not necessarily mean being a musician; it doesn't mean playing the flute at parties or composing songs for lovers. It is a way of being awake, and angle of perception, a tilt of the ear. The musical ear knows it is innately in tune with the universe. A person can talk or move musically, or simply be harmonious without being a fine flutist. You do not need a musician's craft to know that both you and music are made from the same design.
Everybody has an idea about life. The mason says life is like laying bricks. The chef says it is a seven-course meal. Micorbiologists say if we understand microbes we will understand ourselves. This book comes more from a feeling than an idea. It is the feeling I have in my own daily life as a composer and as a teacher, the buoyant complicity that comes from knowing sound. This feeling can't be said, of course, or written. But consider the faceted, compound eye of a moth: it sees the world through a thousand lenses. Each lens senses an incomplete blur, yet the moth's brain assembles the blurred messages into a single image it can use. Let this book be a compound ear, each paragraph a lens for sound, which your ears assemble into a new harmony.