I love good music. To me, some music seems to be alive, that's the good. Most seems to be lifeless, inert, just a random sequence of notes, sound not music. And there is a lot of annoying, offensive, head piercing stuff that I don't want to hear.
Below is a selection of wonderful music. If you haven't heard any of these pieces, you should rectify the situation - YouTube can help.
There is a lot of wonderful music around contra dancing (a hobby of mine). Hopefully including a tune that I just finished writing. I'm not including any of it here.
I have found that people like songs for two fundamentally different reasons. Some like the lyrics and don't really care about the music. I like the music and don't really care about the lyrics. The songs included here of Schubert and Schuman are in German, which I don't understand - doesn't bother me at all. There are a few recordings of Schubert songs in English.
Another interesting issue that I have encountered is that people have an internal clock that is not constant. This is a psychological speed - I am not referring to your heart beat. If you listen to music that is faster than your internal speed, it can have an energizing effect. If the music is slower it is likely to be boring. If you want to understand slow music, you must first slow your internal clock so that the music pulls you along rather than dragging you down.
A melody is a sequence of tones. Why should one sequence of tones be superior to another? I have no idea. But my head tells me, without question, that this is the case. And there are rhythm, chords, keys, performance, timbre, voice. I have no idea how/why all of this comes together to be pleasing. (If you look at the frequency ratios of the notes that make up the seven tones of a Euclidian scale, a, b, c#, d, e, f#, g# for example, you can see why these scales and 1/3/5 chords work well. But this just scrapes the surface of a complete composition.)
I have been trying to write some contra dance tunes recently. I have little background in music theory, but I have listened and played enough music, especially for contra dance, that the basic rules are internalized. If I violate them the tune doesn't sound right.
Given that I have a tune that meets the basic requirements, I have found that with the repetition required in writing the tune, almost any melody will imprint on me, making me enjoy it. This is NOT good. If I like anything I write - how do I know if it's any good? That might explain the incredible array of awful music in the world. Now how can I avoid adding to it?
Symphony 8 D759
D760, D845, D958, D959, D960 piano
Litanei auf das Fest Aller Seelen D343
Der Winterabend D938
Standchen D957/4 from Schwanengesang
(this is a song, despite the many instrumental transcriptions)
Appasionata piano sonata
Widmung op 25/1 (song)
Me and Willie
Poncho and Lefty
Wrecking Ball (the entire album)
One Way or Another
Paths that Cross