Practice Appreciating Music Together
Last updated: May 10, 2020, at 6:45 p.m. PT
Originally published: May 10, 2020, at 6:37 p.m. PT
Music is a wonderful way to express yourself, whether by playing it or just by listening to it. Music appreciation is a simple activity that focuses not only on sharing music that you enjoy with others, but also having an opportunity to voice what about that music really speaks to you. You also will be asked to listen closely to both the music that other people choose to share and the reasons why they chose to share it. The goal of this activity is that you can come away appreciating both your own musical choices and those of the people around you.
One device that can play music. This can be a phone, computer, tablet or even a CD/tape player! Ideally it something that either has a search function or has a wide variety of music to choose from. You can either share the device as a group if in person or can each use your own.
Each person participating will each select one song individually without showing their selection to the rest of the group. It is often easiest to compile these into a playlist together if your device or music app allows.
Once everyone has selected their song, the group will take turns playing each song and listening through the entire piece. When the song is finished, the person who selected that song will share the name and artist of the piece, a bit about why they selected it, and finally why they appreciate it. Once they have finished sharing, you then move onto the next person until every has presented and shared about their selection.
While you are listening to others’ music, try to listen attentively to each selection. What instruments does it use? What are the lyrics saying? How does this song make you feel on first listen?
- If playing out of a randomized playlist, you can have everyone guess which person selected which song immediately after the song ends, before the person revels themselves.
- After a person has finished sharing about why they chose a song and their appreciation for it, you can allow other people in the group to ask follow-up questions. You can either set a limited amount of questions or leave it open.
- If you do have any instruments handy, feel free to incorporate them into the activity. Maybe you would rather play the song for everyone on a guitar than play the recording. Or you would like to sing the lyrics yourself. Get creative with how you express yourself during the activity beyond the recording