What a fantastic question to pose to him?! Rather jealous I didn’t think of it myself! 🙂
And a wonderful reply from him. I don’t think I really took in quite what an…”aversion” he has to being in cities. When he replied to me once about London and how he feels to be there, I thought he was being a little…melodramatic (though London IS an extremely busy city)…but he had a similar view of Sydney – and Sydney is NO London – beats it hands down for aesthetic (in my humble – and somewhat biased – opinion) and open spaces, but he said, “Sydney is let down by the traffic” – isn’t that true of every city?
Sounds like he feels positively claustrophobic in a busy city. That I can understand. As much as I enjoy visiting London (and I do…for the most part), I could never, ever live there! I could imagine the wonderful advantage of everything being right on the doorstep…but how do you SLEEP?! The city is ON…all the time. The tube closes after midnight…but the buses don’t stop…and there are people still milling about everywhere.
I’ve never lived in the heart of a busy city. Where I lived and grew up in Sydney was in the south-west of the city, some 50kms out of the city centre. Luton isn’t a city and its town centre is about the size of the nearst biggest town where I grew up, Liverpool. Just beyond Liverpool is the suburban sprawl of Sydney’s south-west. Farmland repurposed for housing developments to house Sydney’s growing population in the 1960s. Luton and Liverpool (NSW) have very similar feels to me. I might have moved to the other side of the world, but I don’t feel like I’ve moved much in terms of demographic and urban landscape.
I’ve never given much thought to music evoking a place like that. Usually music creates a memory for me. The place where I am when I first hear it will usually be ingrained in my memory. Or, if not the first time I hear it, an occasion of hearing it that creates a unique memory. So many glimpses of things are attached to songs in my mind.
On the odd occasion, the only thing there is is the music itself. It just conjures up an emotion. A mood. And I may only just see the instruments being played.
That’s what happens with my favourite piece – Arvo Part’s Spiegel Im Spiegel. I’ve never had any imagery with it – which is very, VERY rare for me. Or at least, not the usual imagery…an imaginary place I’ve conjured up in my head or the place I first heard it, or a newer, special attachment it has to it. With Spiegel Im Spiegel I just see…dark and light and the violin being played. I don’t even see the piano being played.
Fascinating what we all experience from listening to music. All very unique and individual.