The language of music

Join Our Community Subscribe to Paul's Posts

We use words to describe words. But music, now that’s something different. Instead of letters and punctuation, there’s frequency and tempo to communicate meaning.

Where words are specific to language, frequencies and tempos are universally understood. For example, listen to a simple middle C.

Next, compare that to C sharp.

Notice a difference in those two words? To my ear, middle C has a touch of uncertainty like the opening stanza of a question or an unresolved statement. And when C sharp plays, the question proffered by middle C has been resolved.

But, whatever these two tones bring to  mind, they are speaking a language that communicates deep inside our emotional centers without need of a dictionary.

And complex sets of tones and tempos—like you find in music—reach even deeper into our souls with their rich dialog.

Our stereo systems help get not only the notes right but like a good book, help set the scene and establish context.

The next you’re entranced by the notes of a symphony or the beat of a drum, consider the language of music.