Problems that music can't solve


Music, like all other pleasures, it has limitations.

Therefore, it should not be looked on as the answer to everything.

It would seem that some who are addicted to music, oblivious to the fact that not everyone shares their enthusiasm choose to play it very loudly.

If a person lives in close quarters with others who can be disturbed, perhaps his enjoyment of music might be solved by means of a set of headphones.

If not carefully controlled, music can also consume much time and also create more problems than it solves- as in the above case shows-angry neighbors!

To further illustrate this, let’s take a brief look at one musician who made music his main interest in life, but neglected other things that should have received more of his attention-his lifestyle-a problem music can't solve.

For example the late Hank Williams, one of the most popular of Country and Western singers of his time, used to sing a song entitled “I Saw the Light.”

But, did he? On one occasion, after singing this song, he is reported to have burst out in tears and sobbed that he saw no light.

His life ended tragically from an overdose of drugs, taken while en route to a singing engagement.

Yes, for a person like him who lived for music only, we might well say that music for him was like a few snatches of sunlight on a tempestuous and storm-tossed sea!

Whatever fleeting joy he got from it was all too soon clouded over by the gloom of personal problems.

For those who seek a balanced and happy life, such a musician is a warning example.

While most of us live as listeners, and not as performers, the above lesson is the same for both. Too much time spent playing, or listening to, music is not good.

Music is a very beautiful thing, yes! But there are also other things that require our attention."

If we can wisely keep music in its place—ready to be used when needed and wished for, not crowding out other responsibilities—we may well continue to understand and have a wholesome lifestyle.

Do Pop Stars Offer solutions?

Modern songs often deal with contemporary fears and disappointments.

So people who actually have these problems feel understood by the performers who sing about them.

However, simply complaining about today’s deplorable state of affairs—even when done in the framework of music—does not really change things or solve problems.

So it is not strange that those who sing about their apparently healthy world, or at least dream of such, are afflicted by the very same problems that are common to all of us.

The realities of life serve as a test of lifestyles, showing whether they are feasible or not.

The life that music stars live is oftentimes a distortion of the free and easy life they sing about.

Rock stars are often unable to form balanced, partnerships like relationships.

One lady says of her love affair with Mick Jagger, member of the Rolling Stones:

It was simply insane wanting to share a life with a man who, on the one hand, wanted to belong to everyone, but who, on the other hand, was unwilling to belong to you even when he had the time.”

For over two decades Elvis Presley was a superstar. In a Presley biography we read that:

although he had “an unbelievable career . . . he was not happy. He had few real friends. He was surrounded, as he often complained, ‘either by fans or by spongers.’ He had no peace of mind.”

How did his life turn out? The biography continues:

He could not cope. He turned to drugs, to uppers and downers, he grew argumentative, he was no longer the polite young man he once had been. Those who knew him well still admired him, but they no longer loved him. He lived alone, although not in seclusion, and he died alone.”

Popularity and prestige are in the long run no replacement for a meaningful and satisfying life.

George Harrison, a member of the former Beatles group, said: “There was no longer any satisfaction in it.”

Perhaps this emptiness of fame and the dissatisfaction with the life it brings are partially responsible for the behavior of some show-business greats.

Hotel rooms have been wrecked, cars demolished, and, frequently, people have been injured.

Such behavior is not indicative of balance and composure.

To the contrary, it denotes a spirit of frustration.

A friend of Mick Jagger once said:

Mick has always had an inner conflict. He never wanted the negative image with which he and the Stones were burdened. But in order to cope with it, he . . . became the evil, aggressive man the press represented him as being. . . . On the other hand, he was always dreaming about a sound world, in which maliciousness and power mechanisms would not rule.”

The world of happiness and harmony that pop stars sing about sounds good.

And they may be very good at vocalizing what is wrong with our present world. But knowledge of a condition does not change it.

And their lifestyle is in contradiction to their dreams of a sound world, the one they cannot create for others, not even for themselves.

Sooner or later the music ends, leaving both singer and listener still loaded down with problems.