Generation 911 - My Love Affair with the Beat by Asia Kindred Moore
Music is… Music is. Music is surrendering yourself to forces that are bigger than you. The subconscious tapping of your finger to a beat you know only too well, being sent back to certain memories recalling that soft note, you body moving without being told to.
Tap out, jump in a mosh pit. Wreck yourself to stay with the flow, the beat, and that drive that keeps your body going far beyond the frontier where your mind stopped. The music is in your veins, pulsating with the rhythm of your heartbeat, the beat, the heat. It’s second nature when you dive in headfirst. You can go as fast as you want as long as the music’s there.
Every memory has a song, it’s the soundtrack of your life. It’s a guaranteed way people connect, young and old, old school and new school. The scene and the homies. It may be one of the only things everyone has in common. Who can’t love music. It’s not a question, but a statement.
Do you think I’d be who I am today without all the music that I’ve listened to? Parents and preachers and politicians can debate forever about the influence, good or bad, but the short answer to that question is no. Some blame the problems of teens on the music that the kids are listening to, and sometimes they’re right in judging so. Music DOES in fact have the power to change people’s views. All that music about “bitches” and “hoes” and “40’s” inflicted crazy images and thoughts into the impressionable minds of millions of teens. But I also can’t say that the music I listen to is any better or worse than that; we all have our hidden agendas.
I have a knack for lyrics, especially rap lyrics. But don’t think you’ve got me categorized yet, I’m not just a stupid punk hooked on angry music. I listen to visionary music too, and revolutionary music, and hypocritical music. So listen up!
What I really like to do with music is just rock out. Why would I choose to hide behind some version of looking cool and not go all out with my real rock’n’roller self at a show? I’m sure everyone has a self to hide, seems like it’s what our culture demands, but why not dance instead? It doesn’t matter what anybody thinks when you’re out there dancing away at a good local show in some trashy venue. Or in your bathroom.
I have a love affair with the power of music. I can be doing anything, but then that certain song comes on and zwoosh, I’m off in another lifetime; thought, memory, person, in love. Or my heart can break every time I hear the song that was playing the first time it broke. I watch my emotions get triggered by the music I listen to. Once that trigger is pulled, I’m gone for the ride that’s inside the music. If it’s high, I’m soaring. If it’s down, there’s nothing that can be done to save my soul from the hell it’s entering.
My father and I have a relationship with music. He parades, I follow. I conquer, he cheers. We share our music with each other and discuss how we feel about it, and certain memories related to it and whatnot. We used to stay up late, him standing in my doorway and me at my computer, just listening to music, basking in the energy of it, and the thoughts and feelings that the music erupted from inside ourselves. He is the one who forced me to look at music in a different light.
It doesn’t matter what you look like, how you dress, what you believe, what language you speak. I don’t care about all that, it’s just details. What matters is that music is universal. Every culture has music in some form and it’s all beautiful in its unique way. Not saying I like all music, just saying it’s all good, the true universal language of the people.
As long as I can access my music I will be content. As long as I can move to it, then my heart will truly belong to the sweet melodies I relate with so well. I feel my life force is connected to music. I don’t function well without it for very long. All those songs that hook up with the scenes of my life so far, and all the music that is to come as I live. My favorite music takes me where books and television cannot.
So get absorbed. Forget all the thought-chaos for awhile, as that beat just keeps a’goin.
To those who do not hear the music, the dancer appears mad. Get as mad as you want to be.
Asia Kindred Moore lives in Salem, Oregon, where she works as a barista at the Coffee House Cafe downtown. Asia can be reached at [email protected]