My wife and I have always known how differently we listen to music. I tend to entirely ignore lyrics, while she tends to entirely ignore music. We are the two opposite ends of the spectrum in this sense, and it appears that my wife’s side is more common. Many of my friends think that I have a peculiar, or plain bad, taste for music. Whenever I say I like this song or that song, they look at me like I am crazy. Then they go on to explain why it is bad, and I realize that they are referring to the lyrics, not to the music. I then pay attention to the lyrics for the first time, and realize that they are right. The opposite happens often too where many of my friends love a particular song, and I can’t understand what’s good about it until I pay attention to the lyrics…
I can very much relate to where he is coming from.
A very interesting read. I have had similar observations and thoughts on our abilities to listen to and process music floating around in my head for a while. This guy just beat me to the punch (and prolly did a better job of articulating it a lot better than I would have).
This is why a lot of newer music is entirely lost on me. I read for words and listen for music. The musicality of words and the lyrics of music are secondary observations and of lesser importance when deciding whether or not I favor writing or music.
A woman sits in a booth. She looks harried, middle-aged. She has on a red dress, a little too tight for a body that has seen so much motherhood. She would have been so nice looking without the lights. She is out of place at this cheap diner. Too bright. The waitress startes her out of her sad daze. She looks embarrassed, ashamed maybe, as she orders a black coffee. Her voice is low and clipped, she sounds nervous, sounds hollow. She pats her hair as she looks out of the window, seeing the rain through her reflection. She has no umbrella, she must have taken a cab.
Three cups of straight black coffee make her a little overdressed for an insomniac. No counting down the hours until sunlight, no weary greeting for the second night-shift. The door rattles for the first time in three hours, jerking her out of her stupor. She blanches, then turns red, stumbling out of the booth. She smoothes her dress down and steals a glance at him before settling on the checkered times and cheap black carpet at her feet. The man gives her a once-over as he pounds over. He squares his shoulders and clears his throat with authority when he reaches her. She finally looks up and tries to smile through her discomfort. “Paid the babysitter for the whole night? I got someone waiting,” he says, pulling the sleeve of his cheap suit up to check the time. “No, my oldest is old enough to watch the younger ones,” she says with a shadow of a smile. He turns and starts to leave, again with authority. “Do I look alright? I know I’m a little old for… but I don’t really have anything left… their dad… he… ” she mumbles in a desperate and pleading way, looking up. He gives her a look to tell her she has said too much and walks again, her following sadly.