Category Archives: Music and Well-being

Verdi’s Falstaff: A Key to Happiness

A sense of humor is a precious commodity that can radically increase our well-being.Ā  When the writer Norman Cousins became so ill that his doctors gave up on him, he “cured” himself by watching classic comedies, giving concrete form to … Continue reading

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Music for Hard Times

Increase Your HQ (Happiness Quotient) Here in New York we’ve had a pretty brutal winter along with equally hard economic news.So we’ve been listening to music that bolsters our spirits. How about you? Two character strengths that can help uplift … Continue reading

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Savoring Philip Glass

Connecting with people through his music has been the credo of Philip Glass for some forty years.Ā As far back as 1967 he viewed the modern music scene as being transformed by “a generation of composers who were in openĀ revolt against … Continue reading

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Miles Davis: A Case for Tapping into Inner Strengths

So many of us look up to role models, heroes whom we try to emulate. But all too often we find ourselves falling short and feeling frustrated. Yet there are inner strengths which we can tap to find our individual … Continue reading

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David Byrne: Playing the Building

“I’m not suggesting people abandon musical instruments and start playing their cars and apartments, but I do think the reign of music as a commodity made only by professionals might be winding down.” Amidst preparations for his launching of a … Continue reading

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Sing, Sing, Sing!

Josh and I went to see YOUNG AT HEART last night. This is a very enjoyable documentary movie about a group of elders–average age of 80–who travel the world from their home in Northampton, Massachusetts, giving concerts of Rock music. … Continue reading

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Bereavement, Optimism, and Music

Lynne has just shared an absolutely riveting article with me, “Second Nature: “Your Personality Isn’t Necessarily Set in Stone.” It comes from the current issue of Psychology Today (April 2008). What especially caught my attention was a remarkable story of … Continue reading

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Beethoven: The Power of a Soft Answer

“A soft answer turneth away wrath.” The timeless wisdom of this biblical proverb (Proverbs 15:1) has found artistic expression in one of Beethoven’s most divine creations– the slow movement of his Piano Concerto no. 4, a work I have previously … Continue reading

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Music and Mindfulness

I had a fascinating experience the other night which just proved to me once again what a powerful effect music and sound have on the human nervous system for good or ill. I attended a monthly meditation group led by … Continue reading

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Dancing to Classical Music? Why Not?

In today’s New York Times, Daniel Levitin writes on a topic we have already discussed in these posts, because it is fundamental to our workshops. His take on it is worth reading. He calls it “Dancing in the Seats.” (Click … Continue reading

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