Originally posted by ST:
Recording is fundamentally wrong. Playing live is what it’s all about.
-- Jeff of Cowboy Junkies
from “Cowboy Junkies: The Trinity Session
I ... heard the line, and it resonated.
It resonates with me, too.
Music, to me, is fundamentally an ephemeral transient event that encapsulates -- no, embodies
, or is
-- a "piece of life".
A recording, even of a live performance, bears much the same relation to the "living music" as a photograph or a video relates to the original "live" subject.
Those 'facsimiles' to the original may be inspiring in their own right, but should one ever try to pass them off as "the real thing"?
One doesn't typically assume that a photo captures more than just a small aspect of the original subject -- yet, with music we often equate a recording with the "reality" of music.
Perhaps that's a bit of what Jeff of Cowboy Junkies was hinting at with that statement.
Having written that, however, one has to wonder how it is that recorded music *does* seem to become 'alive' for so many people ... is Jeff's statement only true for performers?
And perhaps, also, there is a process of listening to music where the listener re-infuses that "listening event" with the feelings and intensity which an original live performance might have also evoked.
A wrinkled, faded, slightly off-kilter photo can revive unexpected emotions for the subject captured in that photo... if one had a relationship with the subject of the photo, then the feelings for that subject can re-surface in spite of all the imperfections of that 'facsimile'.
So, too, perhaps the imperfections of a recording can evoke the feelings "projected" by the original performance -- if we are open to "listening".