Thursday, February 27, 2014

Musical Genius - Life Genius

We know what makes a scientist a genius. We know what makes an artist a genius. We know what makes a politician a genius, or a military leader, or even a business owner. But what makes a musician a genius?

This question is one that I have discovered to have implications in much of our lives. Music is one part science, one part shock, and three parts wisdom. The wisdom that is required is knowing your audience, knowing yourself, and knowing the culture. Many musicians fail, they fail because they don't get to know their audience at all, then make the fatal error of forgetting themselves.

They lose themselves in their message, becoming too inundated with what should be, they forget to address what is. Many people will argue that the lyrics are less important than the tones, they are wrong, it's not even debatable. They are wrong because even music with no singer has lyrics, the lyrics are in the tones and perceptible only to those sensitive to such things.

My tastes in music are often called eclectic, I move from sounds of the forest to Akira the Don, then to Marilyn Manson, in one day. I hear the lyrics from both the singer and the tones, the instruments cascading around my ears, flooding my head with images. Those images are the lyrics of the tones, the lyrics of the music itself. This is where the genius can be found, the lyrics of the singer and those of the tones must dance in your mind, painting a picture.

The music is the landscape, the stage, the singers are the actors. They must work together or the song is grating on the ears. Only a few musicians with sung lyrics have accomplished this, and most are not even well known, others are only well known in very specific cultures. Now what does all this have to do with life?

As we go through life, we experience the world, reality, learning from it and being altered by it. The end result is the "me," it's what and who you are. That is our sung lyrics, what's in front, what everyone sees immediately when we come into their lives. But what we leave behind, as we move through life, that is our tone's lyrics, the landscape we are seen in when we are remembered. The footsteps we leave behind, the remains of our actions or inaction, the smells and sounds people will remember with our words.

A life genius leaves a lasting impression, where their tones are in line, matched to their singing, their impressions match their words. A life genius will remain forever in the minds of those they encounter, just like a musical genius, because it all just fits so perfectly. I often work to remember those who don't have that synchronization, either their words are wrong or their landscape is off somehow. I do this mostly out of pity, they will never be remembered by many, but also because then I hope I can learn from their mistakes to help teach others not to make them.

I know I leave an impression, often people will approach me on the street, people I cannot remember for the life of me, and they will call me by name and try to discuss things I have done. No, nothing that I have done wrong, often they reminisce about things I had helped them with. That is why I am now sharing my wisdom, the things I have seen, so more people can be life geniuses.

One could call this handing out free help a way to make up for past wrongs I had committed, you'd not be far from the truth. When I was young my mother, and church leaders, discovered I had this knack, this ability, to capture the attention of people. I could speak to large groups, even when I was really young, and sway them, manipulate their thinking. My tones, my voice, my appearance, it all worked together, so well that none could ignore my words, and they could not forget them either.

So I was placed before these groups, told how they should be swayed, I was used as a tool, and did not fight back. I should have fought back, but at the time I did not understand what it was. I was brainwashing these poor people into following a religion that even I knew was completely made up. So now you are wondering what my secret is, how can you do what I do? You want to know how to capture people's attention, to become a lasting memory in their minds. Everyone wants to know this.

The first thing, make sure your voice matches your personality. Not talking about pitch, that is difficult to control for most people, but your accent, how you speak the words. If your personality is one of prudence, commanding and in charge then your words should be sharp, short, and precisely spoken, for example. Do not be afraid to experiment, and ask perfect strangers if they will remember you tomorrow.

That's the second step, you must not fear talking, share your ideas, your thoughts, your opinions. Talk to people, even talk to yourself. As you walk through life, try it, speak your thought processes aloud, the reaction of those around you will tell you how well you can make an impression. Try to think of the last person you remember talking to themselves in public, you'd likely be hard pressed to do so, but there may be that one you do remember, the one who's voice, appearance, and personality just stuck in your head. That is the person you want to be.

Style is also important, your personal style should match, clothing and other artifacts, you. If you are perky, cute clothing with adorable characters will set the stage, let people know who you are, it defines their first impression, building the stage for you to act on. If you are brooding, dark, with an air of strangeness, dark clothing and makeup is perfect, but your voice and speech pattern must match as well. Try to recall the one person, dressed in all black, that spoke with a rapid, high pitched, excited voice. The ones that remain in your head are those who speak with an angry pattern, or one of doom and gloom, deep, dark, foreboding.

Anyone can become a life genius, but very few of us are naturals. Those who turn it into a profession often work long and hard at it, testing, changing, adapting, and often failing before they succeed. Naturals like me, we tend to shy away from people in real life when we grow older, resenting the damage we had done as youth, trying to avoid doing more damage. So I invite you, the wise and experienced people of today's generation, become a life genius, make people remember you, sway their minds to a healthier society.

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