Early Origins

Melody is universal. Priests with folded hands sing in darkened Chapels to the Divine. Lovers sing sweetly to each other hoping to win each other’s hearts. Funeral Dirges are raised when men make their last journey. Monks sing on the roads, blessing the householders and asking for alms. Rock-stars rouse their fans to fever pitch, and large orchestras play classical music to plumb the depths of human emotions. Operas charm audiences with their dramatic pitch while mothers sing lullabies to their babies to make them sleep. Melody is everywhere. But Melody does not start or even end with human beings. Timbre Wolves bay at the full moon. Lions break the silence of the night with their roaring at the Masai Mara. Cuckoos sing madly into the summer heat, pouring out their heart while remaining unseen. The Skylark rises to unbelievable heights, all the while singing sweetly and triumphantly to Mother Earth. Not all living beings sing with their throats. Humming birds create sound with their fast beating wings, as do the Bees. Whales send out strange melodies into the depths of the oceans. But of all living beings, it is man who has invented and developed musical instruments. From the Aeolian Harp of Greek lovers sitting on Mediterranean rocks, to ancient Babylonians playing love songs on the Zither, to the great Indian classical Sitarists playing the Sitar and calling for rain, the use of musical instruments across the countries is as vast as it is varied. But for a set of sounds to be qualified to be called Music, it must essentially be bound by Structure, Form and Pitch.

Indian classical Sitarists

What Makes Music

An audio form of expression of emotions through continuous or rhythmic harmonic frequencies is called Music. It comes from the Greek word ‘Mousike’, which means ‘The Art of the Muses’. Creativity at its most pure and undiluted form expresses itself in Song and helps us to express the inner workings of ourselves. It is a way to escape from the pain of life, and is a powerful therapy to sooth away the sorrowful moments. It enhances the joy of life and helps release the hormones Serotonin and Dopamine to relax our anxieties and make us happy. It therefore suits every moment of our lives, whether celebrating or mourning. Its therapeutic value is undeniable, and clinical medical trials have shown that it actually helps improve conditions of almost incurable diseases like Cancer. Common elements include Rhythm, Pitch, Dynamics and Timbre. Rhythm means the Tempo, Meter and Articulation. Dynamics has to do with the Amplitude of Sound, its loudness or softness. Pitch governs Melody and Harmony. Timbre creates Sonic Quality and Texture of sound. Together, all these qualities combine to en-trance our ears and heart.

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