MAKING TIME FOR MAKING MUSIC INVITES MUSICIANS
NEW, OLD, OR ASPIRING TO PLAY ON!
Shakespeare may have given us the most famous quote about the joy of making music, but philosophers, writers, scientists, artists, and people from virtually every walk of life have weighed in on music as essential to the human spirit and a profound way for us to express emotions.
Einstein said he thought in music, Jack Kerouac called music the only truth, Napoléon said “music is what tells us the human race is greater than we realize,” and Kurt Vonnegut claimed that virtually every writer he knew would rather be a musician. Maya Angelou called it her “refuge,” Nietzsche said without it, “life would be a mistake,” and Michael Jackson believed that “to live is to be musical.” Now, a new book, Amy Nathan’s Making Time for Making Music: How To Bring Music Into Your Busy Life (Oxford, May), shows how many ways there are for people to learn and make music at every stage of their lives.
Many of us think making music is what we did when we learned an instrument at home or at school, or when we sang in the youth chorus. And, while it was enjoyable at the time, our instruments and sheet music now gather dust in basements or attics. But in fact, as Nathan’s book reveals, more and more boxes are being unpacked and instruments are finding new life in the hands of owners who are returning to music in large numbers, along with others who are bravely discovering music for the first time later in life, as seen in an increase from 10 to 15 percent in all adult students at community arts schools from 2009 to 2013, and a doubling of students age 65 and over during that same period.
Getting over past guilt of not practicing, fear of giving recitals, the mistaken notion that being able to read sheet music is necessary to make music, and other self-created barriers, people are turning to making music to: take on a new challenge, make new friends, build a new community, or reconnect with a part of themselves that can get lost in the wake of our constant news stream and pressures of jobs and day-to-day lives.
Making Time for Making Music offers a gift that can help adults find ways to make music part of their lives. The first of its kind, it is filled with real-life success stories from more than 350 adults who manage to fit music-making into their jam-packed schedules. By day, they may be engineers, business consultants, school teachers, software developers, hairstylists, lawyers, or doctors, but after hours – or as retirement provides more time – they are musicians, composers, singers, and conductors – adding the richness and joy so many have said music gives. Making Time for Making Music shares their unique paths and features advice from music educators, health-care professionals and researchers who point out that making music is good for your health.
Indeed, music brings out the best in us. Confucius – always excellent at succinct summation — is said to have observed, “Music produces a kind of pleasure which human nature cannot do without.”
About the Author:
Amy Nathan, an amateur pianist and choral singer, is an award-winning author of nonfiction books for adults and young people, including two music books for Oxford University Press: The Music Parents’ Survival Guide: A Parent-to-Parent Conversation and The Young Musician’s Survival Guide. Other books include: Meet the Musicians, Meet the Dancers, Round and Round Together, Yankee Doodle Gals, Count On Us, Take a Seat-Make a Stand, and The Kids’ Allowance Book. A graduate of Harvard with a masters’ degree from the Harvard Graduate School of Education and Columbia’s Teachers College, she is the mother of two musical sons; her older son is composer Eric Nathan, her younger son is a saxophone-playing political scientist.
Making Time for Making Music • Written by: Amy Nathan • Adult • Oxford University Press • ISBN: 978-0-19-061159-0 • $24.95 Hardcover
“Amy Nathan has written an engaging and lively book that strongly supports what millions of choral singers have learned: making music together makes our lives better. Making Time for Making Music will serve as great encouragement and a helpful resource to lifelong-learners who wish to enrich their lives through the awesome power of making music.”
– Catherine Dehoney, President and CEO, Chorus America
“Amy Nathan once again opens up the world of music to make it more accessible to more people. This book, by focusing on real stories, challenges, and benefits adults have faced keeping and bringing music into their lives, demonstrates how music is for all—at any level, at any point in life. Makes me want to get my flute out!”
– Erika S. Floreska, Executive Director, Bloomingdale School of Music, NYC
If music be the food of love, play on. ― William Shakespeare
If I were not a physicist, I would probably be a musician. I often think in music. ― Albert Einstein
The only truth is music. ― Jack Kerouac
Music is what tells us that the human race is greater than we realize. ― Napoléon Bonaparte
Virtually every writer I know would rather be a musician. ― Kurt Vonnegut
Music was my refuge. I could crawl into the space between the notes and curl my back to loneliness. ― Maya Angelou
Without music, life would be a mistake. ― Friedrich Nietzsche
To live is to be musical, starting with the blood dancing in your veins. Everything living has a rhythm. Do you feel your music? ― Michael Jackson
Music produces a kind of pleasure which human nature cannot do without. –Confucius