I have probably one of the most strange relationships with music. I listen to music a couple of times a week at least and I use songs for inspiration a lot, but I have aversion to music, specifically live music. I can’t deal with it well. I swallow it sometimes, like when I went to see They Might Be Giants in New Orleans. I tried to deal with it by going to Fenian’s Pub here in Jackson, but eventually I had to stop going. I even have trouble with people singing around me. I start sort of shrinking away from them and want to run. Same with people playing instruments. The worst part is I’ve been like this since kindergarten at least. I remember we had to stand and sing along to a record and my immediate reaction was to cover my ears and sit down. The teachers couldn’t move me or get me to do anything else until the music was over. I have no idea how they convinced me to get on stage for school plays when I was a kid. I was in a few, but man. That was very similar to hell for me.
The worst part of all that is that I love to sing. I would love to learn to play an instrument. I can’t though. Not really. The times I’ve “sang” TMBG song with my friends it’s not my real singing voice. I’m acting. I’m portraying someone who can’t really sing but can do it in public. Sometimes I can do my fake lounge singer voice, but I can’t actually sing in front of anyone. Even when I sing in the car I stop if someone is next to me at a stop light.
I’ve asked a few professionals about this sort of thing before and the most honest answer I’ve ever gotten was “I dunno. That’s pretty fucked up.” I want to enjoy music like other people. I want to share music like other people. That’s what music is supposed to be. Shared. Instead I keep it like a caged animal in a cave where eventually it’s just going to die.