What can I say? Nothing makes me tenser and more irritable than “relaxing music.”
I am a hippie. I am a musician. I love bodywork. But.
But if I have to listen to any more hippie massage therapy music, I will — very softly and with good vocal hygiene — scream.
Here’s how it goes. I go into the acupuncturist/masseuse/energy healer’s office. All is crystals and good vibes and pictures of Chinese waterfalls. So far, so good.
I lay down on the table, and then the dreaded words, “How do you feel about some music?”
Actually, I hate it. That’s how I feel about it.
I try to explain. “Well….” I say, trying not to sound difficult and/or insane (a challenging task), “um. It’s just that. I’m a musician. So I’m actually…listening? And the music? It, um. It doesn’t resolve. It just….um.”
I resist saying, “It goes to the 5 and never goes back to the 1. For, like 45 minutes! Musically, this is the equivalent of blue balls. It’s the equivalent of having a conversation with the most meandering person in the world. It’s the equivalent of someone talking about rich, velvety chocolate cake all day, and then feeding you oatmeal.”
Here’s what I do say: “Uh…it’s just…it’s not that…musical? Um. “
“Oh!” says the masseuse brightly. “Then let’s try this one! It’s kind of instrumental, kind of like classical music.”
There’s a harp, of course. And, alas, Peruvian pan pipes. Is there anyone left in Peru? Or have they all taken it upon themselves to exact their revenge upon the descendants of the conquistadores by wandering through North America, striking a blow for Inca civilization with every irritating note?
I start to get tense.
That’s when the whale songs kick in.
It’s ok. Breathe deep. There is acupuncture and energy! There are candles and amethysts! I can do this!
But then an Enya-like sound arises. A vague, ethereal singing that never resolves into any sort of “language” or “melody” (or… “point”).
My right eye starts to twitch.
At last the session is over. “There, now! Wasn’t that relaxing?”