Yesterday, facing another cold, gray, snowy day in northeastern Ohio, we opted for a visit to the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, in Cleveland; it proved to be a very rewarding decision. The Hall has created a fabulous review of rock history, from the late forties through the present, and the visit reinforced my view that music, more than any other human endeavor, keeps us tethered to the people, places and events of our life.
Music connects us with our past, with other persons of our generation, with those who influenced our lives and with world events that shaped our personal philosophy. While many other factors are vital to our development as human beings, music is closely intertwined with memory, giving our life historical perspective. Indeed, in the quilt of life, music provides the seams.
Some might argue that I am placing too much emphasis on the importance of music; after all, some cultures place strict limits on its use, concerned that its influence is too potent. If anything, such fear reinforces the fact that music has always played a central, powerful role in human civilization, stirring our emotions, encouraging action and cementing relationships. Our visit to the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame made all of this perfectly clear.