In writing this, my latest blog post. I wanted to change my direction slightly from the normal outdoors, photography and travel posts and therefore focus a little more, on another great passion of mine. One that seems to follow me everywhere and effortlessly weaves its way into my life. That being my love of music.
In this particular post, I hope to begin highlighting just what music means to me and in turn, I would like to reach out to my wider audience, by asking a similar question... what does music mean to you?
In my humble opinion, music is a forever changing form of art, combining the art of sound through expression, ideas and emotions. Music for so many can mean so many different things. Some people find music to be their whole lives and to others, it's little more than just background noise.
It can be an escape or an opportunity to refresh your mind. A moment to dive in and embrace something unique. Let it consume your whole body, leaving you with the powerful sensation of Goosebumps and chills, running right down your spine.
Music can end up being your job, a hobby or a forever growing collection, you cherish a lifetime. Within our lives it forms communication, triggers thoughts and provides words of wisdom, we instinctively pass on down through the generations.
In one distinct or unique piece of music, some people see it as their saviour, allowing them to find their feel-good place or offer a form of protection, from the world all around. Music speaks volumes or can be louder than words. It is the global language we use to connect and share our intimate thoughts, feelings and emotions, with other like-minded people.
It is a response to rhythm and melody, whereby we can lose our inhibitions and simply... let ourselves go!
It is a song with meaning and great composition, which often tastes better than the finest of foods. Leaving you feeling content, wholesome and exhilarated to follow and achieve bigger and better things.
It fills us with such intense emotions. Where passionate music creators have the amazing ability to creatively reach out and touch their audiences, in a meaningful and powerful way. To me, music means everything and without it, I simply wouldn't be me.
Now that I've collected and divulged my particular thoughts on what music means to me. I pose the thought-provoking question... What does music mean to you?
Since developing this website and blog at the turn of the year, it has (so far) been an amazing personal journey. With so many positives coming out of it.
Through writing, not only am I learning more about myself as a person. But the world, that so often ignores what meaningful things the 'quieter ones' have to say. Is indeed starting to listen and enjoy, some of the many things I'm trying to produce here.
So much so, I have never been one for limelight or to be held in high regard, it doesn't really suit me. I have been in that position many times before. Within my career, only to find the people around you to be untrustworthy and insincere, ready to undermine you, as opposed to being there to support. With that, I have always been a person who observes, reflects, rather than act (making rash decisions) usually with a big mouth.
If you read this blog on a regular basis, you will slowly start to begin to understand more about myself as a person. You will also realise that I'm honest, upfront and I will always say it like it is. By sharing my thoughts and documenting some of the many things I love or challenges I undertake, I will continue to watch this website/blog grow.
At the heart of this, is my love for the Great Outdoors and indeed the many pursuits that encompass my life in the outdoors.
Music is another...
I love Music...
Besides attempting to grab as much time in the outdoors as possible and of course being that lunatic on a bike. Music perhaps still remains my secret passion.
Throughout my life and under the influence of amazing parents, I have always have been given fantastic opportunities to 'try out' many different types of activities, including playing musical instruments. Starting at an early age I've played the triangle and recorder. Then slowly moving onto more complicated instruments, like the piano and trombone.
Despite always giving things a go. I can honestly say, that I was totally rubbish at them all and would definitely spend more time (looking out of the window) dreaming of playing for Stoke City or being in the outdoors, as opposed to perfecting my perfect pitch and mastering my understanding of musical notes.
In hindsight, this of course was a great shame and despite my parents having the best intentions and the greatest of patience with me. It is fair to suggest that I never fully embraced my chances enough and perhaps persevered at something, that is a particularly wonderfully creative past time to have. In contrast, my Father, who was and probably still is a great musician, must have been (quietly) tearing his hair out at the thought of his children, closing the door, on endless possibilities, far too quickly.
Turning the negatives into a positive
Anyway, realising your rubbish at something should never hinder you, in search of the bigger picture. Especially, when in pursuit of finding something you enjoy doing or are indeed finding something that you are good at. I believe it is all part of life's rich tapestry and as a result, I have the utmost admiration for all those talented musicians out there and over the years I have met many talented people who practice, play and inspire others with musical skills.
Despite being not able to play an instrument properly, listening to music always provides me with my own personal inspiration and I'm more than happy to say, over the years that music has become an integral part of my life and also a key motivating factor, in allowing me to do many of the things I really love. Without it, I would definitely struggle to find many of my current ideas for writing and simply just being myself. Living without fear of following others, or actually being bothered by what anyone else thinks of me or what I'm trying to do or achieve.
Music provides me with the motivation and inspiration needed to do many of the good things in my life. In my previous blog post 'Life in the Bike Lane'. I talked in great detail about the levels of enjoyment I get from cycling to work. But... on days when it is dark and the rain comes crashing down, it can at first feel like the last thing I want to do. Although with music playing in my ears, motivation is played out and it helps me to travel on, deep in the thought that the music I choose to listen to keeps me content, happy and focused on the task in hand. When writing a blog, maintaining a website, together with the demands of living my life, it can also be extremely difficult.
So... during the quiet times, I find peace in listening to my playlists and indeed searching out new artists that not only inspire me to sit down and focus my brain, but they act as my playlist for life. Something that remains close to me and something that allows me to remain positive and continue moving forward.
So... what's on my Playlist?
That's a question that can often be a tricky one to answer, as my tastes are often so varied. I like many different types of music, so the playlists often change and grow. I like most music genres, but mostly songs that give off a positive vibe, inspire me and motivate me. I don't really like slushy rubbish or heavy metal too, but most other things are seen as acceptable.
A while ago, I was looking at Youtube, in order to find some appropriate content, for ideas that focused on me creating some inspiring visuals. I saw some great things and things that really began to resonate in my mind, motivating me to push on and follow my dreams.
During moments of looking through endless amounts of video content. I came across the Australian duo NorthSouth and their amazing cycling video, filmed on the spectacular and intriguing Faroe Islands.
As an avid Geographer and Outdoor Enthusiast, I have been fascinated by the Faroe Islands, ever since being a kid and have dreamt of visiting it for many years. Taking in some of its breathtaking landscapes and wondrous geography would mean the world to me. Sadly, due to other commitments within my life. I'm not currently as free as I'd like to be, at this moment in time, but it still remains a dream and a place and an opportunity I will one day fully embrace.
Anyway, the boys in this superbly captured video had creatively entwined three of my favourite passions. Landscapes, Music and Cycling. What could be better? ...and that was probably the first reason why it really appealed to me. Watching it through (several times) really made the hairs stand up on the back of my neck. Not only because of the excellent cinematography skills, but also the powerful music that accompanies it.
The music made it for me and further supported the many reasons about what music means to me and perhaps explains why I listen to it, so frequently. Especially, when I'm out on my bike, cycling to work or doing something active in the outdoors. Like Hiking the hills and woods or going for run.
The music that accompanied the visuals was called "First Light" by Racing Glaciers. It was first released by the British rock band back in 2014 and is not only a really powerful track. it just seemed to really suite this video. Providing a great source of emotion and motivation for me on my personal playlist.
Further musical inspiration also came from another one of NorthSouth videos.
Here the boys documented their adventures and cycled the highest road in the world and again attached two magnificent pieces of inspiring music. Those particular tracks 'She' by Chad Lawson , 'Dwell' by Tony Anderson were again really uplifting and to me, simply superb.
It is my goal with this post, to not only share good content through personal thoughts and words, but also through an appreciation of really good music. With those intentions, I have started to compile a playlist of music that will hopefully inspire and also lead people to maybe to go ahead and contribute. Simply by adding some of their favourite songs.
It is my intention to create something that can be motivational and inspiring. To be then played when your next out in the Great Outdoors, on your travels or simply doing something you really enjoy. And... hopefully finding enjoyment, a moment to make you smile and perhaps even a chance to help make this often disjointed world, a better place.
Cheers for reading.
Please feel to add ( to the playlist below), share, and make some suggestions in the comment box.