“Music touches feelings that words cannot” is a quote from a Dove chocolate wrapper I found many years ago. It has always resonated for me. Whatever my emotion, there is a song that can help me express it. And sometimes, a song is the only way I find to express it.
A quick Google search for “music and emotion” brings up pages of beautiful and eloquent quotes, psychological studies, and editorials about the power of music to help us express joy and sadness, hope and grief, anger and love. It seems to be a universally accepted truth that music is an important part of humanity.
You, members of Great Plains Dulcimer Alliance, are a collection of extra-special people who create that music. Whether you are just learning a new instrument or have been playing your whole life—whether you play only for your own enjoyment or share your music with others every day—your music is important!
This month, I just want to encourage you to spend a little extra time with your instrument. Play your favorite tunes a few more times. Sit down without any music and see what sounds you can find in your instrument. Call up a friend and learn a new song together. Take a lesson. Go to a jam session. Join the dulcimer orchestra. Take some small step to bring more beautiful music into your world!
March 1st marks the beginning of the season of Lent. It’s a time when many people intentionally simplify their lives to focus on the most important things. I strongly believe music is one of those important things that every individual, community, and nation needs to be healthy and whole. I want to thank you for being part of my circle of friends who bring that gift to the world! Go forth and play!
-Erin Mae Lewis, VP