Hey, Want to Send Me Some Bliss?

The cover was red.

On it was a black man in a white suit with a huge smile on his face and a trumpet in his hand.

In his other hand a white ‘kerchief, and in front of him a large book lay open.

There was something mysterious and alluring about it.

I turned the LP over, and back again.

“Louis and the good book”, it read. “With the Sy Oliver choir”.

I must have been 12 years old, squatting in front of my parent’s row of vinyl discs.

I schlepped up to my room, took the disc out of its covers, and carefully set the needle in the groove.

At the very first chord, I was in ecstasy.

What a deep and rich sound in the band, what a voice, what a choir.

And that trumpet – man, that trumpet.

I probably played that disk ten times in a row that day.

A disc – nay, and afternoon – full of Louis Armstrong singing spirituals.

I was thrilled, enraptured, utterly smitten.

Never to be the same.

It was bliss.

Over the years, I’ve had the same state befall me time and time again when learning new music.

Pink Floyd’s Meddle stands out.

Early Stones, back when they were into white-boy blues.

The first four albums of Funkadelic, rife with LSD (the musicians, not me).

Thanks for introducing me to those, Jeroen.

But there have been more, of course.

The chord progression in ‘While my guitar gently weeps’.

Derek and the Dominoes, Miles Davis, Mozart’s Requiem which I my father took me to hear in a church.

Bach – holy Bach, yes!

Or the very first polyphonic music ever composed, which I first heard when I was a novice monk studying musicology.

Or Jaga Jazzist (again: thanks Jeroen).

In short: I’m a sucker for good music.

As a form of art, I couldn’t live without it.

And each time I discover something new and it grabs me by the proverbials, I know that my life is richer, and will never be the same.

(Do feel free to send me your music suggestions – I’m open to anything and I can’t wait to discover a new form of music-inspired bliss).

In other words: this is your invitation to lay some Stendhal’s syndrome on me.

Just like happened to me last year in Dublin, when I suddenly discovered the visual arts.

Man did my life change.

Anyway, my point in all this?

Simple.

If you don’t do everything you can to share your art with the world and allow for people to have that same experience, you’re only half an artist.

Bold, brutal and blunt?

Probably. But art changes lives, and you have that power.

Wield it, and make the world better and people happier.

Fun fact: the most successful artists became successful exactly because they knew it to be their duty to get out there.

Which you’ll learn about in the July LEAP.

Sign up to get it here –> http://martinstellar.com/leap-to-more-sales/

Cheers,

Martin

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