The Music Lesson

June 13, 2018



Victor Wooten’s the Music Lesson, is one of my top 5 favorite books of all time, here’s why: though I would recommend it to any musician, I first and foremost appreciate the deep philosophical contemplation that comes within each lesson. This book’s purpose is more than guiding musicians to bettering themselves as players, it also touches upon wisdom applicable to all areas of life.

Here are some of my favorite life lessons from “The Music Lesson,” by Victor Wooten (in no particular order):

1) "There is always beauty to be found, and it is necessary to find it in all things and in all people if real change is to be made in this world....It is always easier to build upon this beauty than to pretend it is not there and try to create it from scratch."

2) “Beauty is something you experience, not something you prove.” Simple enough to understand that in life, sometimes we lose the beauty in trying to mold the outcome or in attempting to prove our ability to do so.

3) Victor claims to his mentor in this book that he does not like blue grass, to which his mentor replies, “you are talking about you but blaming your lack of perception on this particular style of Music”
The point in this section pertains to our ability to shift blame when closing our minds to learning and expanding in new ways. In other words, our distaste does not always have to do with things or people themselves but with the lack of understanding of them. The more we understand, the harder it is to hate.

4) During the sixth chapter, Wooten starts talking about soloing, and how artists surrounding the soloist need to keep the groove and lay back. “We were creating a hole right in the middle of the music that allowed the soloist to stand there out in the open. We also simplified the music, directing all of the attention to the soloist.” Later on some of the soloists, rather than bearing all of their capabilities, play very simple lines that also compliment the groove. In these moments the crowds were most captivated and engaged. This tells me less is more. Overworking, overthinking, trying too hard can take away from ones potential to make an impact.

5) “You need to get your thoughts out of the way so that your true feelings can speak.”
Someone once told me “it is easy to make the simple complicated,” and this fits in the same vein, I think. When we escape too deep into our thoughts, we stop participating with life- being open and honest usually requires less contemplation and more bravery.

6) “There is only one reason that you ever fail at anything... and that is because you eventually change your mind. That's it! Anything and everything you have ever decided to do, you have succeeded, or will succeed, at doing.” If you put all of yourself into something and do it for the right reasons, success is already yours. There is no greater form of success than being present and enjoying the process.

7) “When people put you on the pedestal, don't come off it acting like you're humble. Because if they put you up there, that shows how high they can see. Stay there and pull them up, and they'll grow faster.”
Yes! We are all on the same journey. People can only see what already exists in them, even if they haven’t quite accessed it yet. Be an allie to those around you.

8) “Life is a lot like music, you’ve got to put some rest in there.”
This one is probably my favorite, as someone who burns the candle from four ends 😛. Growth, appreciation, depth, all exist in silence. Sometimes silence or space scares us, and we overcompensate by filling the void with more noise. But over extending yourself will eventually strain and weaken your ability to achieve your goals anyways, don’t forget to take some rest!

There are many more gems, but books are better read than reviewed! Let me know if you want to see more book reviews or what topics you’d like me to go over in the following blogs this week!

- xo, Brit

Daily Dad Joke #13:

Why did Adele cross the road?
to say Hello From the Other Side!  

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