Originally, I had planned to give this post a title of something like: “Changing tempos, changing rhythms.” I hadn’t put a lot of thought into it, and so when I started to type “Cha,” I decided to instead seek out a more concise term that fits the subject matter; I googled for “changing tempo” and was delighted to see the wiki entry for “Terms for change in tempo” at the top of the search results page.
“Rubato” is a term to refer to an expressive change of tempo, traditionally speeding up and slowing down, though the term is often interpreted by musicians and conductors to grant them a freedom of rhythm and expression. It is in this way that I will interpret it for purposes of this post; you see, I have decided that in order to change my internal tempos and rhythms (I figure there have gotta be at least several), I will be listening to only classical music for at least the next month. Yes, I will forgo Against Me! and DJ Screw in favor of Mozart and Rachmaninoff.
It is my goal that I am able to change my thought patterns and moods and perspective by replacing the overbearing noise and often-heavy lyrics I typically find enjoyable with more expressive and poignant instrumental sounds. I fully expect that sometime around tomorrow afternoon, I’ll really want to jam to the new Cloud Nothings album again, but I will instead challenge myself to dig deeper into the classics to find the sounds and moods I want to hear; I have some knowledge of composers from growing up in a fairly musical family and playing piano and violin, but I want to fill in some more blanks. I want to understand more of the history of instrumental composition; I mean, how did we get from Bach to Varese? For that matter, I only know Varese because of an interview Frank Zappa once gave; whom am I missing whose music would blow me away if I would just give it a listen? We’ll see!