I listen to almost all sorts of music, but I am at the same time extremely picky about what I like and not. I don't listen to genres. I don't say that rock is my favourite, nor classical. I don't listen to genres, I listen to songs. And when I mean songs, in most cases that means melodies. Despite loving good written texts, poetry and such, song lyrics just aren't that important to me when I first hear a song. If the melody packs a punch, then I couldn't care less if they were singing 'lalalala'. Well, that's an exaggeration, but still.
When I hear a melody, I usually instantly know if I love it or not. Often, the first seconds is enough, but not always. When I was a kid, I listened to spesific melodies over and over. I didn't just go through cassete tape and move on to the next, I went back to the songs that gave me goosebumps and made me feel emotions whether good or bad. Even now I can recall perfectly some melodies from when I was little, and they still give me the same goosebumps, the same feeling of escaping from reality and just listening. These songs were powerful. That's why I liked them so much - they made an impression.
I'm just the same now. When I listen to melodies, really listen, I find myself filtering out the ones that aren't powerful. The ones that are bland or boring or have musical qualities that I don't enjoy listening to. The ones you feel you've heard a thousand times before. Not to mention songs with little or monotone melody, such as most rap songs. When I listen to music, I want build up and I want a climax. The kind of music that makes you go 'wow!' That is probably why I often enjoy movie soundtracks. Not all, of course, but a lot of it is about enhancing the emotions of the movie, be it sadness, drama, humour, thrill... And most of the time, there are no distracting lyrics, no need to think or analyze. Just like with a lot of classical music, you can just listen with your heart, without relying too much on your brain.
I was listening to some soundtracks here the other day, sort of a list of favourites, if you will. And I came across the main title theme from Spiderman. Most of that melody is good, but the main reason I listen to it because of 15 seconds of awesome. When I watched the movie, I fell in love with those 15 seconds of musical heaven, and I found myself searching up the score and listening to those seconds alone over and over and over. Why? Because you don't need more than a few seconds, a few tunes, a few moments, a few chords to fall head over heals in love with a piece of music. To me, the ability to touch the listener with just those few seconds is a sign of brilliant music creation. Another example is the score "I don't think now is the best time" from Pirates of the Caribbean - At world's end. It's a long piece of music, and brilliant in many ways, but there are a couple of minutes or so in particular that just sucks me in every single time I listen to it! And I could list a thousand other examples!
I'll never see the point or the fun in listening to music because it's popular, because others like it, because you feel you need to, or because it belongs to a spesific genre. I listen to music because it gives me something. Whether it's a death metal song, a ballad, a pop song, a movie soundtrack or a classical masterpiece - as long as it sends shivers down my spine and sends my brain into standby while my heart takes over, it's worth listening to over and over. And if it doesn't... well, I'll either forget about it, hate it or learn to love it for other qualities such as lyrics, rhythm or by associating it with something else that I like.
Just felt like ranting a bit~ If you are still reading this, why not tell me why YOU listen to music?