Sunday, March 26, 2017

How Music Inspires My Writing #OpenBook Blog Hop

The wind sweeping through the cluster of aspens in the fall, rustling the yellow-gold leaves. The gurgle of a mountain stream as water rushes on its way downhill. The calls of birds as they hang in the sky and flirt with the clouds. The chirping of crickets as they look for mates as the sun sinks in the west. These are the sounds that inspire me and my writing.

Thanks to juskiddin at FreeSound for the wav.

Then there are the times when I need to shut out all exterior sounds so I can listen to my interior voice. That's when I slip on a set of headphones and cue up some old favorites.

If you have followed this blog for any length of time, you know there's a lot of John Denver in the mix, depending upon my mood. You might not have expected Pink Floyd and the classic 'Dark Side of the Moon' to be on my list of favorites, but it is. Next toss in some classic rock and songs from the Woodstock era, Don't forget any number of female vocalists and singer songwriters from the 1970's and onward.

It's not only the music itself that inspires me, it's the words to the songs. So many of the songs are poetry when you take a look. The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band comes to mind.

From Ripplin' Waters (by Jimmy Ibbotson)

And you made my world a warmer place
By the sparkling of your diamond face
On a frayed spot put a little lace
And you make me feel fine
Warm as the mountain sunshine
On the edge of the snow line
In a meadow of columbine

Many songwriters are gifted at making emotions come through not only in the words to the songs but in the music as well. Joan Baez comes to mind. Here's a sampling of the words from 'Diamonds & Rust.'

Well I'll be damned
Here comes your ghost again
But that's not unusual
It's just that the moon is full
And you happened to call
And here I sit
Hand on the telephone
Hearing a voice I'd known
A couple of light years ago
Heading straight for a fall

The words and music of those talented folks help me to find the mood and words I need to express the emotions of my characters. Listening to their songs also helps me concentrate on my own words.

I'm interested to see what our other authors listen to. You can find out by following the links below.

March 27 – How music inspires our writing
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  1. Enjoyed this post. Thanks for sharing.

  2. I like the sounds of nature too ... or the sounds of a crowd if that's what the scene calls for. But I do find that instrumental music can set a mood that helps build scenes in my mind.

  3. Nature sounds are wonderful. God knew what he was doing! I also like John Denver and since we're heading to Colorado on the bikes this summer, I've purchased a DVD for on the bike.

  4. I've managed (over the years) to assemble a large collection of his LP's. That includes the original copy of Rocky Mountain High I purchased back in the '70 when it was released.