Music Festivals: What’s the Deal?

You’ve probably read or heard about music festivals. Perhaps surprisingly, what once seemed like a bygone hippie past-time has become big business. With American festivals such as Coachella and Bonnaroo and British festivals such as Glastonbury drawing literally hundreds of thousands of visitors, they’re not just part of the counterculture anymore – music festivals are in the mainstream.

 

Of course, Woodstock wasn’t the first event that qualified as a “music festival.” Ancient Greek religious festivities, such as the Pythian Games (a precursor to the ancient Olympics), involved a heavy musical component, though the music was a lot more related to religious practices than most music festivals are today.

 

In the nineteenth century, composer Richard Wagner threw a music festival to premiere his colossal Ring Cycle, a sixteen-hour, four-part operatic extravaganza perhaps most famous for the “Ride of the Valkyries” theme. The Bayreuth Festival, so named for the small German town it was hosted in, was an immediate and massive success, drawing accomplished composers like Pyotr Tchaikovsky and Franz Liszt, as well as Kaiser Wilhelm and the philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche. The first Bayreuth Festival was in 1876, and it’s still being held today. Despite the fact that the last full performance of the Ring Cycle was widely panned, the waiting list for tickets is approximately eight years long.

 

In Europe as well as the UK and the US, electronic music festivals are a huge attraction, with people flying from different continents to attend. Ibiza, an island off the coast of Spain, has been known for years as perhaps the summer party destination for lovers of dance music. In general, Europe plays host to the biggest music festivals in the world, often dedicated to specific sub-genres of electronic dance music. Belgium’s Tomorrowland festival is one of the most popular, drawing more than 160,000 attendees in 2015. Other huge electronic music festivals include the United States’ Electric Daisy Carnival – 400,000 people attended the Electric Daisy Carnival (“EDC” for short) in 2015. (For context, Las Vegas, where the festival is held, has a metropolitan area of just over 2,000,000 people – meaning that EDC increased the population by fully 20 percent!)

 

Rock festivals are also a large cultural phenomenon in the US and UK. Many “jam bands,” such as Phish, were hugely popular in the 90s. Known for their highly improvisatory live performances, Phish, among other bands, hosted their own music festivals, during which they’d play multiple sets every night for a few nights in a row. Lollapalooza, in Chicago, was one of the first huge rock festivals in the US, capitalizing on the popularity of alternative rock music and featuring artists such as Pearl Jam and the Smashing Pumpkins.

 

Music festivals aren’t only attractive for the music, though. Many feature a number of other attractions, including artists’ exhibitions, stand-up comedy, and photo booths (getting the right photo booth hire for a music festival, like doing security, can be an elaborate undertaking). In short, “music festivals” have a lot going for them besides the popular stereotypes of drug abuse and unwashed hippies – and given the fact that they’re only increasing in popularity, they’re probably here to stay.

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Music Is a Great Therapy for Many Mental Ailments!

Music is an art which almost every human being is introduced to from his early childhood days. When a mother sings a lullaby to her newborn child, it is nothing but the music which soothes the child and calms him or her so that he or she can sleep peacefully. As the age of the baby grows, the music grows along with the baby. From lullabies to nursery rhymes and poetry to rock songs, music accompanies the child till he or she reaches adulthood. Every major event in a man’s life is accompanied by the music, be it the Wedding or a funeral. It will not be wrong to say that the music is one art which is always with us from our birth to death.

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Music can be peaceful, exhilarating, sad, pleasant, exciting or even frightening. We can express or our emotions and feelings through music and nothing else can be so powerful a medium for our emotions. Words do help us to communicate what we are feeling, but themusic makes it possible for us to communicate without any words. Therefore, many people prefer instrumental music over vocal as instrumental music is considered as the purest form of music. Music is not limited to the elite class or the class which understands the technical details of music. You need not understand and learn music to feel it and love it.

Nowadays Music is also being used as an alternative therapy for many mental as well as physical ailments.Let’s see how music therapy helps in controlling or treating some physical and mental ailments.

How can music therapy be used for treating ailments?

  • As music is the part of our lives since we are born, almost everyone feels better after listening to music. No one considers music as a threat and therefore it works as a non-invasive therapy for many ailments related to human mind.
  • Music consists of various rhythms and beats and thehuman brain responds positively to it.Therefore, it is used for people who are prone to anxiety attacks or depression so that they will feel relaxed and positive after listening to music.guitar-775271_1280
  • Music therapy is very useful for kids who suffer from autism and have difficulties to concentrate. Music helps them to control their wandering minds and pay attention to a subject for aprescribed time limit.
  • Music therapy is also used for people who have suffered a stroke, to start communication through speech again. The reason behind this is that the neural circuits which we use while speaking and listening to someone speak are the same which are used while listening to music. So music can help to reactivate these circuits so that people can start talking again.

Music makes us feel and also makes it possible for us to control extreme emotions. In a way, music can trigger some feelings and it also helps us control some feelings. In every way, music is an integral part of human life and no human can be complete without some form of music in his life.