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The Musical Life: Reflections on What It Is and How to Live It [Kindle Edition]

W. A. Mathieu
3.0 von 5 Sternen  Alle Rezensionen anzeigen (1 Kundenrezension)

Kindle-Preis: EUR 13,97 Inkl. MwSt. und kostenloser drahtloser Lieferung über Amazon Whispernet

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according to W.A. Mathieu, is musical by nature—it goes right along with being
human. And if you don't believe it, this book will convince you. In a series of
interrelated short essays, Mathieu takes the reader on a journey through
ordinary experiences to open our ears to the rich variety of music that
surrounds us but that we are trained to ignore; such as the variety of pitches
produced by different objects, like glassware, furniture, drums—anything you
can tap; or sounds that hover on the border of music, like laughter, the
clinking of glasses in a toast, or the unintentional falsetto produced by
yawning. Along the way the author teaches aspects of music theory that
nonmusicians might ordinarily shy away from. He reveals the way of music to be
a profoundly spiritual path—one that is everyone's birthright.


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Die hilfreichsten Kundenrezensionen
3.0 von 5 Sternen Mixed. 15. Juli 1999
Von Ein Kunde
Some useful information and observations, mixed with a fair amount of totally off-the-wall nonsense.
War diese Rezension für Sie hilfreich?
Die hilfreichsten Kundenrezensionen auf (beta) 4.5 von 5 Sternen  4 Rezensionen
22 von 22 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen Excellent Book for Musicians and Non-Musicians Alike 26. Mai 2000
Von David Neale-Lorello - Veröffentlicht auf
The Musical Life is, first, a rare, clear glimpse into the mind of a masterful artist. Although Mr. Mathieu's primary medium is music, the experiences he discusses are not necessarily unique to music. A photographer or an architect could take away as much from this book as a saxophonist or a gamelan player. What enables the author to build the bridge between broadly differing disciplines is simply the way he is about his art, how he holds it in his life, which is a life that transcends the specifics of media and taps into the source of art itself. Mathieu articulates his musical life in a way that enables readers to examine their own artistic pursuits and intentions and apply his insights to them.
On another level, The Musical Life gives a sense of what the daily life of an artist can be like, the day-to-day rhythms, the ongoing sensibilities - a "behind the eyes" insight into one artist's worldview. For readers who already consider themselves artists, this can be both validating and expansive; for the non-artist, it is an invitation to fold a new reality into their old familiar one.
Additionally, and not to be overlooked by the musical reader, Mr. Mathieu provides a number of novel approaches to common musical problems and questions. For instance, a section called "Sound Is the Teacher" contains a thorough description of the overtone series which is basic enough for the layperson, yet communicated in a way that can inspire even the most knowledgeable. It is at once practical and transcendent - the best such explanation I have found. He is clearly an excellent teacher, thriving on sane, original thought.
In the end, this is a personal book. One is left with the experience of having gotten to know someone well, as with a fellow traveler on a long trip. It may be said that this apparent intimacy is merely an intrinsic illusion of all writing, since readers cannot share with authors in the same way that authors share with readers, but the sense of intimacy remains nonetheless, and there's no doubt that Mr. Mathieu has shared himself fully in writing this wonderful, enjoyable and useful book.
9 von 10 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen An excellent and humorous book NOT written for musicians! 8. März 2002
Von "billyds" - Veröffentlicht auf
A very thought-provoking and extremely funny book about how to be a better listener to all the day-in day-out sounds around us that we typically ignore. I am now on my 3rd reading of "The Musical Life", and each time I read it I discover many new and fascinating pearls of wisdom. It's amazing that a professional composer and musician can be such a wonderful and hilarious writer, but Mr. Mathieu certainly is. Most of the chapters are brief, just one or two pages each, which I prefer (short attention span!). I am an amateur musician, I play the shakuhachi, a bamboo flute, for terminally ill hospice patients, and Mathieu's little chapter on "Healing Music" really hit home for me. Simply put, he states that music won't heal the listener unless it first heals the player. Profound and heartfelt words, but on the other hand Mathieu doesn't take himself too seriously either. I have just ordered his earlier book "The Listening Book" and can't wait to receive it in the mail!!
4 von 4 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen Music and the Soul 7. November 2011
Von Donald E. Skiff - Veröffentlicht auf
Format:Taschenbuch|Verifizierter Kauf
I read this book--no, I red this book in headfuls. His little essays, some only a page long, are thoughts standing more or less alone. Of course, they are all related to the title of the book, but like most profound thoughts, they seem somehow innocent and uncontrived. If I, being greedy, kept going page after page, I lost that sense of the innocence; I lost him. It was as though we--good friends--were sitting in the same room, reading our separate things or thinking our separate thoughts, and he clears his throat to politely get my attention, and then speaks. No dialog needed, except perhaps a grunt or a hmmm to acknowledge. I absorb his words and translate them into my own patterns of thinking, savoring the thought, tasting in it several flavors of meaning. Alas, in reading a book, there's no immediate way to respond to such insights.

Wonderful experience, this book. It's all about music, which is all about life. He ponders the relationships between music and words, how music is experienced directly, while words merely point to experiences: "This is like that." But even words strike us in two ways: as sounds and as metaphors standing for something else. Poets know this well, and Allaudin Mathieu turns words over on his tongue to get their full flavor. If one eats a crisp, ripe apple without tasting it, one gets only nourishment of the body. Sorry about one's deprived soul. This author tastes everything. Even his own name. At some point in his early adulthood he studied Sufi, and was given the name Alla-uddin, meaning "seeker" or "teacher." In one short essay he savors the name as both the collection of sounds and as a pointer to at least one piece of who he feels he is. "Bill" was his given name, but as an adult professional he chose to simply use his initials, W.A. Mathieu. Even this little story gave me some moments to think about the feelings I have about my own name. Another sound, crisp apple to taste.

There's more here than even that which I found in his later book, Bridge of Waves, which introduced me to this wonderful mind. I learned--finally--(or perhaps not so finally) what makes the blues something different, something special. It's the seventh partial. OMG, as the kids say. As simple as that, and as complex as it will turn out to be when I look really deeply into it. How many years have I wondered aloud, and nobody answered in a way that I could understand. Of course. The seventh partial. I leave it at that, if you're as curious as I.

He loves numbers, because numbers define the universe. They define us. This, from a Sufi mystic? It's because numbers define music, and we can no more detach ourselves from music than from e=mc2. And yet, music gives that which we yearn for:
"It is part of growing up to recognize innocent desire, to own it and inhabit it willfully. Then we can transform it into something useful. Music is an agent for that recognition. In the safe haven of music, we can live in our pleasure shamelessly, intelligently, experimentally, indulgently. We can take hours--years--to learn that part of our nature."

I still don't know why I respond to drum solo in Iron Butterfly's "Inna Gadda da Vida" or the largo in Shostakovich's Fifth or the seventy-year-old body of the woman I love, but I do. And thanks to Alla-uddin, I also love the Mystery of it all.

I'm sure there are other books from which one could get the technical information about music theory. In this book, it's toward the back, in a couple of sections titled "Sound Is the Teacher." Ahead of that, you find the person of W.A. Mathieu writing about that which he loves--and lives--music. If music moves you, so will this book.
7 von 24 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
3.0 von 5 Sternen Mixed. 15. Juli 1999
Von Ein Kunde - Veröffentlicht auf
Format:Taschenbuch|Verifizierter Kauf
Some useful information and observations, mixed with a fair amount of totally off-the-wall nonsense.
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