When Words Matter


By "words" I mean words used to describe music or, rather, the experience of music - not the same thing.
I never found it easy to locate words to name or describe my experience of musical events: something always seemed to get in the way.  Perhaps it was that I thought I was expected to know what I was talking about, as if there could be only one right way to talk about the experience.
Determined not to perpetuate that particular confusion, I deliberately kept my students from developing abstract vocabularies to mask their experience.  The result is glistening accuracy in their ability to verbalize the quality of what they hear.  
It took a while.


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