Oscar Wilde wrote: ‘Life imitates art far more than art imitates life’ . My starting point is also the enormous power and impact of music. Music is a moment of being, showing who you are, what you want and what is really important in the world. We can get close to the truth by linking the time spirit and something deep inside ourselves. Gustav Mahler spoke about the ‘Panlautigkeit der Wirklichkeit’ (the sound of reality) and a few years ago I wrote the song ‘Anachrone circles’ about it . But we have internalize it, because we are losing contact with the earth, the other and the network. In this way music was a great help, while writing my new book ‘Multiple Choice identity’. I could see more as well as understand deeper what was going on. Music was a model for living with different voices and relations and rich harmonies (Barenboim). Music is not only about democracy, but it’s democracy itself! Through music everything became more itself. My message to the reader of the book is: ‘Feel and therefore we learn’ (Mary Helen Immordino).
There are different musical entry points. Firstly music is a sense opener like Kurt Cobain singing: ‘Smells like teen spirit. Here we are now entertain us’. Secondly it’s a source of knowledge about the spirit of the time. For example Classical music created democracy and the swan song of authoritarian power. World War One was called ‘The Music War’, because music was a weapon. It’s also a past that’s no history because this war is still alive in heavy metal songs like ‘One’ of Metallica and ‘Passchendale’ of Iron Maiden. A more recent example of the spirit of the time is ‘OK Computer’ by Radiohead. Thirdly music can be a countervailing power, a call for action. It’s the audiolisation of ‘das Unbehagen der Kultur’ (the discomfort of civilisation) as well as a way to change the world (‘Animals’, Pink Floyd), to stop violence (‘Killing in the name of’ , Rage Against the Machine), to protect human rights (‘Keep on rocking in a free world’, Neil Young) or to feel responsible for climate change (‘Courage of Man’ by Midlake). Fourthly music is a cross-over between cultures and the place to be is a festival. After all music is democratized because it expresses the individual identity and enables us to develop a good democratic citizen with a ‘Multiple Choice Identity’. ‘Hey ho let’s go’, The Ramones.