Uncovering the Artist in You: Play that Funky Music

Anne Frasier once said, “Music is art, and art is an integral part of the human experience.” I think that music and art go hand in hand. Maybe at first you would not necessarily think that these relate, but there is so much diversity and beauty that comes along with creating and listening to music.

After doing a bit of research on music stores, music lessons and studios, I thought it would be interesting to include Rock Garden Studio in my blog series post. This one is located right below the FOX CITIES Magazine office! Owner Marc Golde gave some awesome input on music and art. “Music IS art. What is to the ears, is to the eyes.”

While Rock Garden may be considered a little “old school,” they offer a lot of great gear and gadgets for the best recording experience. Although recording isn’t cheap, Rock Garden offers affordable prices for the Fox Cities area.  They have amazing sounding rooms, stage gear and recording equipment as well as modern computer editing and automation. This recording studio also does music videos and business video creations which is another really cool aspect of Rock Garden. Golde explains, “Creating art is so vastly enriching to one’s life.”

For me, music is incredible because there are so many different sounds, instruments, and talented people out there that make music come alive for all the right reasons. Without music, where would we be? I think that life would be pretty dull and boring without it. Music tells a story whether it be by the sounds, lyrics, the people playing it, or the entire concert experience. That is the whole beauty and wonder in it all. It also takes a lot of talent and hard work to be able to produce something that is so moving so I give musicians so much credit for the incredible things they do and create.

Golde explains, “Being great at making music takes time, lots and lots of time. You have to love the process of learning and developing or you’ll never get anywhere. The more you do it, the easier it gets. Eventually, you develop a language and speak fluently.”

After taking piano lessons for two years and the clarinet for about three years, I realized getting the hang of the instrument isn’t too difficult, but making a song that actually sounds good is a lot harder. With piano, there are so many keys, sounds and notes to play all at the same time that it can be overwhelming. With clarinet, there didn’t seem to be as many keys or hard notes to play, but it didn’t always sound good alone and squeaks quite a bit when first starting out. Being part of a whole band made it seem so much better and stronger as an instrument because it was an important part of each song in its own way. I think finding the right teacher and the right instrument are key parts to being able to successfully play and grab onto a new, cool hobby.

Golde also gave some advice on learning to play an instrument or singing for the first time. “To be great at anything, you need to learn the hard way. Too many musicians get coddled at a young age and never pursue the knowledge of their craft,” he says. “Without that knowledge you will be limited with what you can offer in the future.”

Music is different from other artistic outlets. Golde explains, “Live music is immediate. You get a reaction as you’re performing it. You know if you’re being received or ignored. You can learn and adjust while you’re performing. Recorded music has a different reward. It’s a documentation of what you were feeling at that time. To me, that’s priceless.”

With so many ways to try something new and delve into the music scene, you’ll surely find something you love. Even if you aren’t very interested in learning a new instrument or getting some of your original music recorded, there are still coffee shops, parks and festivals to go to that always offer various musicians and bands that perform. Go out and experience the diversification of music!

Golde believes that the Fox Cities have something really great to offer so it’s good to take advantage of the place that you live. “To music fans in the Fox Cities area, know we have something special going on here,” he says. “Even some of the large markets around the country don’t have what we have. Get out and enjoy.”

If you’ve never been to one of your favorite artists’ concerts, you should save up and go because in my own personal opinion, I think that concerts are an amazing experience and each one is so different from the next. I’ve had my fair share experiencing concerts of all types of music starting from Hilary Duff, the Cheetah Girls, and Miley Cyrus as a young girl all the way to becoming a hardcore teenage Directioner for the popular band, One Direction, seeing them not once but twice (and almost a third). As I’ve gotten older, I have seen a few more artists such as rappers like Outkast, Lecrae, and NF and cool bands like Bowling For Soup, 5 Seconds of Summer, Florida Georgia Line and Rascal Flatts. Each concert was a whole different experience and neat in its own way. I love how musicians make their music visual with the lights and effects of the show and interacting with the fans .

For Golde, his most memorable concert was his first one seeing Cheap Trick at age 13. “Half way through the show, I knew what I wanted to do with my life.”

One last option to really dig into the music scene is participating in or going to open mic nights. Lots of bars and coffee shops host these special events. This is the perfect way to show off your talent of your voice, instrument or both! Keep an eye on your favorite places to go to so you can really show off your awesome talent.

Golde gave a last bit of advice for artists, “Don’t cater to what’s popular or what you think might make you famous. That’s a recipe for failure. The next big thing is never more of what’s already popular. It’s always something fresh. The best way to create fresh art is to not copy what’s popular now, but what connects with an audience. Stay true to your taste and style.”

Whether you be checking out local coffee shop performances or summer festivals, the craziness that is the Mile of Music with so many new and upcoming artists, or really splurging on that front row VIP ticket to your new favorite singer, I think music has a way of representing art and giving you the chance to try or experience something new. Get those tickets, buy a new instrument, explore new music genres. Try to really immerse yourself in the art of music.

Tell us! What local music festivals are your favorite or an instrument you have always wanted to try? Leave a comment below.

Arts & Culture

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