Basic Musicianship Pt. 1: Making Music a Full-Body Experience

Welcome to my basic musicianship series! Here I'll give you a quick and dirty rundown of things that have helped me in my musical journey and can do the same for you! Let's begin.
I find it very strange that the fact that music is an embodied art isn't more obvious to all of us who pursue it. But you know what? It wasn't obvious to me either. When I started, music was this mysterious, ethereal thing that hung up somewhere in the clouds. I felt a real sense of lack being so far away from it. However, as I came to grips, and gently challenged this feeling, it became obvious. 
What does this mean? It became clear to me that to be truly present and feel the music, I needed to start building a relationship with my body and listen to how music was moving me. Embodying it this way gave it heft and made it real for me - almost like a new sense. It felt like the exfoliation of the spirit, purging it of old habits. It felt like the scent of citrus after a summer rain. 
To get out of my head and get the music in my bones, I took some steps. Firstly, I had to learn to feel the underlying pulse in my body. I started walking to a metronome. Instead of sitting still while listening to my favorite song, I started swaying and "counting" with my shoulders. 
Before I got into music theory, I just relied on the material the music presented to me. I would count a cool lick the guitars played or maybe clapped along to the snare drum. The more I did this, the more I realized how infectious this was. 
Before I knew it, the music was in me, and I started to dance and get my whole body involved. Granted it was silly and corny, but hey, it made me feel connected and full of self-love, so why not? It certainly made doing dishes or vacuuming my house a LOT more fun. 
Music isn't out in the ether somewhere - it's fully in you. And it's fun. I think the older we grow, the less we forget the magical power of play and fun. Don't be like that. Get up, move, and feel the music. 
How will you embody music today? Let me know in the comments below!

Leave a comment