There is no definitive answer to such broad question, and certainly not one that skips clichés, although they do point out core elements that help identify why individuals love music; so why not embrace them and move on, shall we?
Most music is universal, and doesn’t require a common language to understand and enjoy it; at its most basic form, is a combination of melody, harmony and rhythm, and even if we don’t recognize these elements separately, we can feel them, there is an instant reaction, and that in itself is pretty lovable. I would say lyrics are secondary. Listeners don’t instantly love a song because of words, otherwise we would really be into poetry.
Spanish is my first language, and although I’ve been exposed to music sung in English pretty much since I was born, I never really knew what most of the songs meant, until maybe a few years ago. Certainly, what made me love a song wasn’t the subject matter, it was all about the sonic experience, and how those sounds made me feel and where they could take me, which leads me to another clichéd reason of my love of music: otherworldly.
Music is a trip. It takes us places we wouldn’t otherwise be able to go, and yes, cinema and photography do an excellent good job at it, but music does it different, better. It’s the most affordable getaway; we can escape our reality whenever we want. It enables a bubble that protects us from the outside world. “I Listen, Therefore I Exist”.
Walking down memory lane is another aspect I love about music. It’s a sonic look at the past in such a vivid way. Often times I find it even more powerful than the memories evoked by a photograph, and trust me, I document a LOT.
Lastly, music is a reflection of our state of mind. It adapts our mood, our thoughts, it’s the invisible companion that gets us through the day.
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