The Link Between Music Arts and Culture
Movie viewers are looking to Uzalo’s daily episodes. Uzalo yesterday, today, and tomorrow is going to be a great story. One factor that makes this TV series and other films great is the music. But is there a link between music and culture? Ethnomusicology is the study of the link and connection of culture and music. Ethnomusicologists devote several years to study the music of a certain cultural group by living with the community they’re studying and while learning their lingo or dialects, practices, traditions, and their folklore.
In all continents in the world, each cultural heritage has its own music form which is being introduced to the younger generation to keep culture and arts burning. All throughout history, music has been used for various reasons and is one of the unifying factors of all races even though each cultural heritage is diverse. Selecting to embrace the co-existence of varied cultural heritage entails us to view music and culture from several viewpoints.
With these different viewpoints, we see that there are several cultural principles, ideologies, and beliefs regarding music. These multiplicities of cultural principles, ideologies, and beliefs enhance our way of living, extend our awareness of the world, and intensify our love and attachment for our own cultural music.
Music and its Connection to Culture
Singing is worldwide, however, the purposes for doing it are diverse. In the Western musical norm, singing is predominantly for leisure, performance, or for reverence. While for other cultures, singing is an existing power and energy. In a West African culture music for them has power. For instance, a blacksmith fabricates a tool while singing a tune. It is thought by them that the tool deprived of the power of music would have no strong suit or strength.
For several cultures, singing done with varying tones is used to create a compelling and forceful association to their own bodies and to their ancient ancestors done over ancient ceremonies and rituals. Others use singing as means for detecting and identifying ailments in order for it to be healed. They also use singing, chanting, and dancing for transforming the soul or the spirit by attaining a changed state of the mind.
Singing, for many different cultures, is not about putting on a show for the audience. For them, it is an act sharing, of kindness, and compassion where each one joins in creating a more pleasing and wonderful place to live in. For many cultures, for instance, in the Navaho, Charlotte J. Frisbie marks in her essay entitled Gender and Navaho Music: Unanswered Questions, “Anyone can sing and all are encouraged to learn songs… Not knowing any songs or not having the ability to create them is equated with poverty.”
The more we learn and study about the variances of music, the more we gain a deeper understanding of the singularity or distinctiveness of our own culture, the more we respect each one’s traditions.