Corey Mwamba


analysis of feeling

Sounds come forward to the ear, the body, the mind; guided by one set of principles and translated by our own. Sometimes these principles are shared.

We feel a collection of sounds; and then, after some time, we feel another collection of sounds that remind us of the previous set. Or perhaps (after some time) we have a feeling that another collection of sounds has occurred. This feeling of timing is given a name: rhythm.

We feel a connection between a collection of sounds in an instance. This feeling of connection is given a name: harmony.

We feel a separate sound within a collection of sounds; and we feel a connection of that sound to another sound, which is itself separate. This feeling of separateness is given a name: melody.

When we try to describe or analyse music, this is what we are talking about: timing, connection, separateness. That we use the ways of finding patterns—mathematics—and the ways of talking about ideas—philosophy—to do this is no coincidence. But the reliance on the finding of patterns (or formulating ideas) can lead us to think that the pattern or idea is the only thing we should talk about: reduction occurs, and occasionally foolish things are said. But we also want to talk about feeling. What analysis really should do (if it is presented and read correctly) is illuminate the feeling.

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