It was the eve of Christmas Eve when I noticed that mom would have no presents to open from Santa. Not wanting to disappoint her, I set out with my friend Matthew to find Mom the perfect gag gift. We were in the middle of a very pointless, hilarious conversation when I had to interrupt him to turn my radio almost to a deafening level. I have an exceptional bass in my car and could not pass on the opportunity to make the mirrors bounce with the song that had just came on the radio.
As I was singing every word, except the bad words, of course, Matthew looked at me and yelled over the music, “I have never heard this song. What is it even about?” Fully engulfed in this brilliant song, I was taken aback by the simple statement that he had never heard it before today. With a look of judgement on my face, I yelled back, “You have never heard ‘Downtown’?” Yes, that’s right, a college student had never heard “Downtown” before this trip to Kohl’s. I explained to Matthew that “Downtown” was about, well, mopeds! Matthew returned my look of judgement.
Matthew was not impressed, and the more I think about this popular song, the more disappointed I get. Music is supposed to be beautiful. “Downtown” is certainly beautiful. I mean, it makes Kenzie’s curly hair bounce with the bass which is a sight that everyone must see! But for centuries, music has been about more than beauty. Music has been used to motivate and inspire the world. Bob Dylan was not writing music with the hope that some kids would use it to make their hair bounce. Instead, Bob was writing songs with the hope that they would change the world. I do not know about you, but a message about mopeds will not be changing my world anytime soon. Today, we confuse noise for music.
As I throw away my 2015 calendar, and put up the cool new calendar that my grandma gave me for Christmas, I began to think about the noise in my life. For me, the noise from my peers always inhibited me from hearing the music from my mentors. Many times in life, mentors would give me advice that I knew was beautiful music. Unfortunately, I would let the noise of my peers hinder my decisions. I was always so afraid to listen to the music because the noise was much louder. Do not let the loud noise of your peers drown out the music.
Music is truly unique. Music has the ability to change the world. Noise can be disguised as music and can win over our hearts. But do not be fooled into thinking that noise is music. Music is a beautiful thing. By blocking out the noise and listening to the music, we can obtain freedom.
2015-2016 Indiana FFA State Southern Region Vice President