Before I got married, my favourite styles of music had been contemporary folk and classical music. Then my husband-to-be entered my life and brought his favourite rock music into our household. I discovered quite a new musical world but did not find it overwhelmingly appealing. I did like some rock ballads and from time to time a rock song but did not enjoy and often could not stand those lengthy instrumental interludes my husband was speaking about passionately.
A few weeks ago he bought a CD. He did not tell me a word about it but I noticed it playing one day and as its music aroused my curiosity I went to have a look at whose recording it was. I found out that the CD was titled “Unarmed” and was recorded by a German metal band Helloween to celebrate 25th anniversary of the band’s existence. They compiled a few most popular songs and rearranged them in a symphonic arrangement. Some of the songs are accompanied by the London Choir and surprise, surprise also by the Prague Philharmonics Orchestra. This was the first time I have heard of that band but the band itself is not that important in my story.
I liked the music of the songs but because I did not understand all the lyrics, I looked them up (so thankful for the Internet thing) to know what I was listening to. Songs’ lyrics have always been important to me but there is more. I used to have a classmate who was a Methodist. Once she mentioned that her father did not want her to be listening to the songs whose language she did not understand, because they could propagate evil and hatred and be a devil’s tool. I did not believe either in God or in Devil at that time but the explanation made sense to me and frankly, if I hear a song nowadays which I like musically but do not understand its words, I always check the lyrics…
Well, surprisingly enough to me, I liked the lyrics of the CD too. How good it is not to be prejudiced, I thought.
When I told my husband that the CD had caught my attention, he was pleased but immediately found original versions of the songs on the Internet to show me the difference and their “harder face”. I still liked them so the day after he found a recording of a concert and asked me to come and listen to a part of it. I had other plans and wanted to do something on my laptop so I was not quite eager to follow him but when he asked again for just 10 minutes of my time, I did not want to be unkind. He sat me in front of our PC, put head phones on my ears and clicked the play button. The concert started. The first song having about 4 minutes in its CD version lasted 10 minutes with its lengthy instrumental interludes… and I thoroughly enjoyed that. I was listening further and further and my husband could not believe his eyes. (It is good still to be able to surprise your husband after 18 years of marriage, isn’t it?)
Eventually I saw all the two hours of the concert. After the first 15 minutes I decided to leave the plans behind and enjoy the show without any remorse. When I have plans and do not realise them because of a distraction or an obstacle, it makes me upset. And it happens quite often. Unpleasantly often. But there are times when it is good to succumb to the unplanned and I believe we are perfectly capable of distinguishing between the cases. This time, watching and listening to the concert felt healing and resuscitating. As if a new shoot sprouted from old wood…