Musical Midlife Crisis

If we were having coffee together today, I would invite you to meet me at the patisserie in the village closest to us. The sun is shining brightly, wouldn’t it be lovely to sit at one of the little tables on the sidewalk and just watch the people go by? With a cup of café crème and a croissant…or maybe even one of their decadently delicious fruit tarts? 

I have heard that a young street musician plays in the village on Saturdays, we can listen to his music and see if he is any good.

If we were having coffee together today, I would have to tell you how grateful I was this week to have music in my life. When the trials and tribulations of midlife tend to overwhelm me, I listen to music. 

Ever heard of a Musical Midlife Crisis. No? According to Spotify, 42 is the age when many of its users rediscover the joys of current pop music.

“During the teenage years, we embrace music at the top of the charts. As we grow older, our taste in music diverges sharply from the mainstream up to age 25, and a bit less sharply after that,” explained the company on its Insights blog.

“Music taste reaches maturity at age 35. Around age 42, music taste briefly curves back to the popular charts — a musical midlife crisis and attempt to harken back to our youth, perhaps?”

I can not really say that I went through a Musical Midlife Crisis at 42. I have always enjoyed all sorts of music, including music currently topping the charts.

I really am so grateful for the immense variety that there exists in music: classical, blues, jazz, rock-and-roll, reggae, hip-hop, heavy metal… There is music to suit my every mood.

I am grateful for the way music can influence my moods: if I am stressed, I choose a piece of soothing music, if I am going for a run, a piece of upbeat music, if I feel a bit low, I listen to music that lifts my mood.

I am grateful that music is a universal language. I have met people whom I otherwise never may have had the privilege to meet, because we share a love of music, even though our music tastes may vary enormously.

I am also grateful that music can facilitate meditation. Sometimes, if I feel very distracted, music helps me to concentrate. I  choose a piece of music, any type of music really, and then focus 100% on this piece of music, to the exclusion of everything else, of all other thoughts. Meditation has made midlife much less of a challenge, that is why we introduce guests on our Personal Empowerment Workshops to this meditation technique.

I am thankful for the ability of music to bring hundreds, thousands of people, together. In our region, every year in the beginning of August, a small town host a world-famous jazz festival: Jazz in Marciac. More than 200 000 people attend every year – we never miss it.

I am so grateful…

…for the easy availability of music these days. All one need to listen to the music of your choice is a phone, tablet or laptop. How very different it was 100, 200 years ago.

…that I have a good singing voice. Singing allows me to escape into another world, a world far removed from the hustle and bustle that is my daily (mid)life.

…that my husband also loves music, that he loves playing the piano and that we have something to share now that we have a bit more time to spend together. 

…that I sing in a choir where I can share my love of music with several other people once a week. I think one of the best ways to meet people and make new friends, is to join a choir.

…that music foster creativity, allowing people of all walks of life to express themselves. Although I have no talent for composing, each piece of music that I sing gives me the opportunity to be creative by interpreting it in my own way.

Without music, my life would be so much poorer.This week really has been a week full of music,  even my WPC-post is about a haunted piano: Musical Meditation.

Musical Midlife Crisis

This post is part of the MJP Gratitude Challenge and the Ten Things of Thankful Challenge (#10Thankful). If you click on either of these links, you will find several more similar posts to read and you may even decide to add one yourself.This post is also part of the #Weekend Coffee Share collection of blog posts, hosted by Diana of Parttime 

10 things of thankful#weekendcoffeeshare

27 Replies to “Musical Midlife Crisis”

  1. Well I really want to have coffee & cake at a patisserie in France now! I never heard about the musical midlife crisis – that’s quite amusing. Don’t recall my parents doing it though! Neither of them suddenly started listening to Vanilla Ice or anything! Very jealous that you can sing – it’s something I’ve always wanted to be able to do but can’t.

    1. I shall force myself to have coffee and a pain-au-chocolat (we call them chocolatines here) later this morning, Lucy, just for you. Singing is hard work – I have to practice several hours every week – so maybe you are not missing out on that much.

  2. Margaretha, what an encouraging post. I come from a family of gifted, professional musicians and yet listening to music used to annoy me and I never understood why. However, I later found out about Sensory Processing Disorder, where people’s senses can be out o whack and either over or under active. I am the sort of people who covers their ears with loud noises. Anyway, I took up the violin to help my daughter and playing the violin has re-programmed my hearing and I now enjoy listening to music. It’s also helped me in all sorts of other way.
    My favourite music to listen to, however, is the ocean. There is such variety in the sounds the ocean makes and it’s so beautiful. I could listen to it forever! xx Rowena

    1. I am familiar with SPD, Rowena and I commend you for overcoming it, could not have been easy. Are you familiar with the VAK learning styles? I ties in with this. I love the sound of the sea too. Ralph VAUGHAN WILLIAMS’s Symphony No. 1 is called ‘A Sea Symphony’, the scherzo (‘The Waves’) is my favourite part.

      1. Thanks so much for putting me onto “The Waves”. Beautiful! Did you see this version with the stunning clip?
        I have looked at the VAK Learning styles in the past and thanks for putting me back onto it. I re-did a questionnaire and not unsurprisingly came out visual then auditory. Makes so much sense. Hope you’re having a great week! xx Rowena

  3. There is nothing quite like music for all the reasons you mention and more. I love music I am a non-practicing musician right now. But one day there will be playing again. But I always sing. Always. My husband is a phenomenal jazz player and composer (he’s actually on Spotify, come to think of it) and I so love hearing him play. Our daughter is already a music lover and a delightful singer. Can’t wait to see what instrument she picks up!
    Interesting about the musical tastes. I can definitely see that about myself. But at the same time, I have always loved all kinds of music from every period, style, genre, etc. It just depends on the day, my mood, the occasion, etc.

  4. So many different varieties of music. You are right that it fosters creativity. My brother is the composer and I write so I wanted to take a stab at writing some lyrics for a song he wrote, but I am doubting myself and my abilities. Back to it now.
    Have a good week.

  5. there are days I just need to listen to Van Morrison to ease my soul then there are days that the many genres that I have on pandora do the trick – TY

  6. “There is music to suit my every mood.”

    Isn’t that the most amazing thing?! No matter our state of mind, there is a piece of music to accompany, soothe, encourage and/or otherwise complement any facet of our daily life. sigh It is both tool and toy 🙂
    I totally agree with you that it is a universal language. It crosses all barriers, language included.
    As I began reading your post, the very first paragraph, I was transporting myself there 🙂 Yes, it would be lovely. If we have lived before, then I was French in my past life 😀

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