which songs are the scariest?
And herein, we shall see…yes folks; it’s Twisted Mixtape Tuesday
So now is the time when all over the hop, folks are brushing off their scariest songs – whether scary-bad (like the karaoke they attempted at the weekend), scary-menacing (the rise in intensity and vileness of the opposing team chants of the football hooligans, sung in time to the tapping of police batons on shields) or scary-jumpy (a la the ‘creepy movie soundtrack’ piece, as the doomed hero of the piece declares, taking a tighter grip on his flashlight, that he’ll “Just check around outside…”).
All validly horrifying in their own ways.
But nothing compared to this:
(Settle back in your chair, and prepare to just stop, mid-thought, as I ask you to contemplate, consider, and fully imagine the implications of the following)
A world without music.
Where in the dawns of time, tribesmen stood in front of the awe-inspiring lightening of the sky from the first crepuscular rays to creep up from the uptilt of Earth as it gave in to axis and sunshine, and nothing happened. Silent acceptance of such beauty, without the upwelling of untidy harmonisation and rhythm which is assumed to be the heritage of all music – can you comprehend it?
A world where stick knocked on stick, and the synapses didn’t fire to signal the noise-maker to repeat the sound again and again, in frenzied joy of the beat, movement following sound as it twisted, stacatto and alive, into the ears and enthusiasm of every nearby human – infectious, binding, identity-giving – hands and feet clapping and stamping in time with the laughter as they tried to keep up.
A past where instruments were never created, and the language we developed was stymied by never having understood the cadence and beauty of the ragtime piano of Joplin, the crescendoes of Rachmaninov, the mathematical perfection of Bach or the sheer exuberant joy of pairing Yo Yo Ma’s violin with the vocal talents of Bobby McFerrin.
A heritage blighted by silence. Our souls never versed in the pleasure of identifying the ‘perfect song for this moment’ and sharing it with others. Our hearts never raised, en masse in acts of worship in temples or stadiums, as we hold our lighters and sway, unified by the ebb and swell of sound; willing participants transported to another world, where all else is forgotten in lieu of the very ‘here and now’ of that sweet music.
A present where we could never whistle merrily to accompany our day, or to show false bravado.
Where we would be prevented from sending a song instead of a message, because the music says it better.
Where our emotions lay dessicated from un-use; no expressions of love sung soppily to another. No shouts of joy and participating when the day is happy enough to merit a tune. No way to self-medicate the deepest pains by listening to Al Green or Joni Mitchell, tears pouring with abandon as the hurt, composed and distilled by the notes, wells up out of the speakers and into our desperate ears.
What would we be in world where we could see into another’s eyes and know that something fundamental; something vital, was missing, for the soul appeared faded and endlessly sad, having had its tongue cut out.