Music trumps language. Most communication happens nonverbally and words can get in the way. There is something authentic and revealing about a musician’s live performance. The sound of an instrument can be pure, moving and real. But, of course, language is monumentally important. The lyrics of our music reflect and shape our culture, our politics – essentially what we agree to as a people. So, unless we are content with the current arrangement, we need to forge new language – new choice of words – and new words altogether.
Richie Havens began the first performance at Woodstock with the words, “Hello – groovy, groovy, groovy” before ending his set with an iconic call for ‘freedom.’
Today, ‘wake up’ is a popular phrase – for good reason. People resonate with the John Legend and The Roots album, Wake Up! and Sam Harris’s The Waking Up Podcast.
It’s no wonder that the dictionary.com word of the year is ‘complicit.’ As language evolves there is this play between cultures and generations. We help each other find the words, together. One theory of linguistics suggests that marginalized groups are leaders of language evolution. I’d also argue that that teens don’t ruin language.
Maybe, when someone looks at you funny when you chose new words, you need silence and space. Maybe, you need a new audience. Either way, life serves you in finding your groove.
Music, comedy, and art of all types force our culture and our politics to shift. So, use the force, or whatever. Just, don’t stop trying – be patient – keep an open mind and open heart. Get inspired – our politics need your voice and your freedom. Your impassioned Leftist talk is music to my ears.