Lifelong Learners – You’re Not Too Old to Learn Music

August 8th, 2014


Too often older folks tell me that they have no musical talent what-so-ever. This is usually in the context of discussing my own musical abilities. I appreciate the compliments (don’t we all). Compliment me further and ask to be taught! This is actually very important for the same reason that it is important to learn music in a person’s early years. The key to being a lifelong learner is knowing how to learn. Music teaches us this skill.

A lifelong learner probes and prods every detail in an object. They look at a broken appliance, figure out how it works, and fix it themselves. They look at a programming language and study it rather than declaring it to be magical. A lifelong learner listens to music, and starts asking questions about how it’s done. It’s not enough to appreciate beauty. They want to know why its beautiful. They want to make it themselves, and this is a wonderful thing.

Music is for the Lifelong Learner

Music is a marvelous way to teach us how to be curious. It teaches us how to listen. It’s not possible to reproduce a sound you haven’t listened to. Lifelong learners are sponges. They soak up all of the information around them and in all of its forms. The arts in general are a raw form of teaching the skill of observation and emulation. It forces the learner to make seemingly arbitrary connections. “How will adding blue to this spot of the canvas create beauty.” But it does, and learning happens. This sort of intuitive knowledge is what grants the ability to manipulate the world around us. Lifelong learners reconstruct illogical data in a way that is beautiful and useful.

Are you a lifelong learner who doesn’t know music? Probe into the raw materials of creative thought. You’re not too old to learn music. You can start here.

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