Bits of Life Missed Worth Exploring

The Bending Road of Knowledge


I like music, a lot. All different types. When I was in grammar school I took piano lessons for about 3 years but quit because the music I was told to practice and play was classical and I didn’t think that was cool. This occurred about fifty years ago.

Recently, I stumbled across an article on being a DJ and it offered some links to e-books that I could read on the subject. One of them talked about the harmonic mixing of songs so that they transitioned from one song to the next in a pleasant way.

Not understanding what was meant by “C major” and “C minor” keys as opposed to a flat and sharp key I went to YouTube to learn. I already understood the key of C and all of the major. sharp & flat keys on a piano from my piano lessons as a child. I can still play them on a key board. (But I don’t remember about learning about a major and minor key of the same letter).

In looking at the videos, I began to learn about music theory and how a major and minor key differed. That even though there are 12 notes to every key, using up to 7 notes will work to provide a coherent melody. If all 12 were used we would hear only noise.

Going back to my playlists, I tried to harmonically mix songs and found that it took a lot of time. Not knowing the related keys for harmonic mixing, I had to experiment. The final product did have a different, pleasing sound and flow to the music.

My fascination was captured in many ways during this journey. After fifty years, the base of knowledge I had about the key of C and other keys on the piano had been helpful. So it’s true, no knowledge is ever wasted.

That learning occurs in many ways about the same topics. I first read, then that led me to watch videos, and then experimentation. There was a richness to this type of educational journey because it wasn’t simply presented to me in one form. I needed the different forms to help me build context around what I was trying to learn for it to be more meaningful.

A less apparent awareness was just how much detail goes into a profession that we take for granted. DJs are present at many events. We enjoy them. Some better than others. But the really good ones, have a depth of knowledge and context, that far surpasses most of their counterparts because they took the time to pay attention to detail. That is why their music sounds so good. ( I believe this is true regardless of the topic or area of expertise.)

And my love of music has now led me to want to learn more about music theory. All of this, in spite of the fact that I still can’t play much on a keyboard.

The bending road of knowledge occurs more often than we think. Even in areas where we think we know a lot, we sometimes become surprised at how much we have yet to learn or when that learning might occur.

Bits of Life Missed Worth Exploring


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