Music is unmatched for affecting moods, and that’s just as true today as it was when David’s harp rang out centuries ago.
It was surely a melodic proclamation by angels, when they visited the infant in his crude crib, proclaiming glory to God and promising the blessings of peace on Earth and goodwill to men.
As babies, our moms crooned lullabies as we dropped into dreamland. Little girls chanted rhythmics as they jumped rope. Recalling the romantic days of knights and fair maidens, we read of troubadours serenading their lady loves on their balconies. We danced to that wonderful era of swing as young adults, and our generation mourned the loss of its icon, Glen Miller, even as we loved the Dorseys, Artie Shaw and a host of equally famed big bands. Tunes you could actually sing, words that made sense, catchy beats that set your feet astir. That was the era of real music.
Now, those same old tunes magically transport our generation and evoke genuine nostalgia. The words come back like yesterday, even to many seniors who find it difficult to remember what day of the week it is.
Music therapy is now a recognized art approaching science status. But as we sing about little towns and shepherds and traveling sages — or mourn one of our age trampled by a reindeer — we recharge that memory gene note by note. And maybe even exercise our tapping toes.
I wish you a Merry Christmas, along with a Happy New Year to you and your kith and your kin.