Wednesday, March 07, 2007

Music of My Heart

I would imagine it happens to most of us. It may seem weird but somewhere, some day, you hear a voice that you recognize not so much with your brain, but with your heart.

It can be the voice of a man (or woman) you end up loving.

I had an old boyfriend who I thought I loved at the time. I was certainly infatuated. I spent a lot of time thinking about him and dreaming about him - and us - but when he called me on the phone, it always took a half a second to recognize his voice. Usually he would say “Hi, this is David” and my brain would finally register and I would think “oh” to myself.

Then I met a guy named Mark. Through a weird twist of fate our first and second dates were 11 months apart and we didn’t talk in between. When he finally called me, I knew instantly who it was. No, he didn’t have some speech defect that made his voice unique or anything. My brain didn’t need to process it, I just knew. I really think it was my heart responding to his voice and it has continued to do so through the past twenty years.

Your heart may recognize the voice of your child.

My son was born 7 weeks prematurely. He was in the delivery room for what it seemed like a nano-second. They showed him to me (but without my glasses they could have told me he was a girl and I would have believed them!!) and he cried for a brief moment before they whisked him away to the neo-natal unit. I had developed HELLPs and was so sick myself so I wasn’t even allowed to see him for 3 entire days. When I got better and they took me down the NICU, outside the double entry doors, my heart heard him cry. I knew it was my son crying even though there were quite a few babies in the unit. I had only heard him once and for the briefest of moments but I had no doubt. My heart knew that particular tiny voice.

It can happen with a singer.

My heart recognizes Clay Aiken’s voice. Don’t get me wrong. I love lots of music and singers. I always have. Contrary to how some people would like to portray all of Clay’s fans, I DO listen to Top 40 radio, as well as classic rock and some other stations. I think this is partly how I came to the conclusion that my heart, not my brain, responds to something in Clay’s voice.

I try to be logical about it but it is hard because I can’t deny that if I hear Clay’s voice singing anything I know it instantly - almost too fast for my brain to process what I am hearing. If my brain isn’t processing it, then what is?

It seems like with almost everyone else, I find myself thinking about it. I hear a song and I usually process what the song is before I process who is doing the singing. For example, I hear the words to a particular song and then my brain that processes that it is a certain singer's song. It takes me a moment to place the voice. It is like my “oh” moment with the former boyfriend. It isn’t that I don’t like the voice or the song but it just takes a moment for it to sink in.

It is more than just recognizing a voice though. Of course there are unique voices I can place immediately but then it is usually more of an afterthought. I will always recognize Steve Perry’s voice or Amy Lee's but it is my reaction to Clay’s voice that makes me believe my heart is involved.

I can be somewhere crowded and it can be only background music but if a Clay song comes on, my attention is immediately focused. I recognize the voice before the song - before any other conscious thought.

Funny thing, it happened to me again the other day. A Clay song came on and all of a sudden I was hyper-aware and my heart beat a tad faster. It’s been 4 years since I first heard Clay sing a note and I still react the same way when I hear his voice at the beginning of a song. As much as I have enjoyed many singers, that particular reaction is a first. I can’t help it. It is hard to hide it.

The great thing about a heart is that it is individual and your own. My heart may not have recognized my old boyfriend’s voice but someone else’s probably did. Same goes for music. A voice that may not register with me may be making another heart skip a beat.

Pretty neat if you ask me. Have you listened with your heart lately?

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Idle-wandering said...

That's beautifull said. Thanks for the schmoopie. {{{hugs}}} regarding your mother-in-law's illness--I'm so sorry.

clayz4u said...

I know exactly what you mean! Once in ny dentist office I was writing a check at the check-out counter . I was staring off into space. The lady there said "What'swrong?"Isaid "Shhhhh! That's Clay singing"! You could barely hear him without straining but my heart knew him immediately!! It happened another time in a supermarket, and several other places. We hear him with our hearts because he sings to us with his heart!

mmb40 said...

What a fabulous blog, Michi. I remember you telling me the story about Mark vs David, and how you knew you would marry Mark the very next day after your second date. Your heart recognized Mark was the one for you. You did a great job of tying that to how a lot of us feel about Clay's voice - when you know something's right for you, you often know it (and recognize it)immediately. Great job!

You know my warmest thoughts are with you and your family regarding the crisis you are facing. {{{Hugs}}} to all of you, and I hope I can give them to you in person before too long.

Lady Luke said...

What insight you do have, Michi! I believe you have answered a question I've had since "Take". And so well written, too.

Corabeth said...

I could always pick out Clay's voice even in group sings. You are so right that we don't hear him with our ears, it's much more personal than that.

jackie said...

You have put in to words exactly why I feel so many react to Clay as they do.I know that I feel with my heart when I hear him sing and that he is the only singer that I am able to listen to day after day and never get tired of hearing him. I like other singers but I always get bored after a while but clay that has never happened in four years. I go to sleep listening to him. Clay is so special and I don't think we have even begun to see how special he is.

Anonymous said...

This is one of the best descriptions of what it is that attracts us to Clay like no other, that I have read in 4 years!!! Once, in a crowded subway station (Union Station in Toronto that is also a rail hub!!) I heard Clay's CW just after he had performed it on TES - it wasn't out yet on CD and I wondered how they got to play that, but it was unmistakable - it was Clay. Gave me chills!

4theloveofClay said...

Love you for loving Clay. Love you for always writing lovely things about him.

I find myself responding to his voice like you. I remember right after his first cd was released, i was at Sears and i was all of a sudden captured by this voice and i followed it because i knew it was Clay's. A lady that worked at the cosmetic counter was playing his cd and i heard it over the mall's music from the other end of the store. It always happens with me wherever i go, first i hear Clay than i hear the song. Even my husband, of all the artists on the radio, get tuned in and recognize his voice (sadly his songs are not being played anymore, even when i requested it. where's the justice?!?) There'll be songs from other artists he has listened to for years but he always never realize it until i mention it.

I just wish the whole world would have a chance to hear what we hear.

Anonymous said...

You hit it right on the nose, Michi. It's something I felt, but could never find the right words to express it; you did it for me. Thank you! Yes, Clay requires listening with one's heart, and I'm more than happy to oblige!

Anonymous said...

That is exactly what happens to me when I hear Clay's voice. You said it so well.