Recently, something the dead guitarist said hit home and I began to wonder why we bother to ‘remember the moment’ at all.
That punk philosopher said:
“I realized that so many moments in my life I’d been trying to ‘capture,’ to remember and enjoy later. But there was no point in doing that anymore because I was going to die. Every moment, I just had to enjoy for itself because that was it. I wasn’t going to be able to remember them.”
We’ve all done this — trying to ‘capture a memory’ to savour later. I thought that was being present but it wasn’t at all.
Because that’s really it.
That moment exists and then it’s gone forever.
But isn’t the fact you got to see it just fucking marvellous? And not just see it.
You got to feel it.
You got to hear and taste and smell and live it all.
Nobody else will ever live what you lived.
Who needs memories when we get to live them every day.
Words are great, but music is the best thing we’ve ever made.
It took me a long time to realize what a powerful tool it is.
We’re the only animal that responds to music at a physical level.
It’s so powerful that it can even relieve the symptoms of neurological diseases like Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s.
Music fuses to our core. It entangles our emotions and weaves through our memories.
In many ways, the music you listen to is you.
I bet you even know what tracks would change your mood right now; to put a swagger in your step or a tear in your eye.
Or go back to a time in your life. Like time travel— our brains whisked through time hitched to a couple of bars of The Libertines or No Doubt or Bob Dylan.
Maybe people who “don’t listen to music” are a bit scared of its power, and they’re probably right to be. It’s light we can feel — and it’s powerful magic.
Careful how you use it!
When we were children, we learnt to play the tin whistle.
It’s a shrill little instrument that probably blew out the eardrums of anyone who heard us practicing.
Years later, whenever I left to go travelling or university or to move country, my mother would thrust this cold little tube into my hand and say, “Take it with you — you never know when it might come in handy.”
I never took the whistle, but I took the idea to heart. Knowing that whatever happened, I’d be able to earn myself a meal by practicing in public.
It took me a while to work up the courage, though!
You never know when something silly might become useful later, when it merges with something else and that opens up the world.