In his novel Ignorance, Milan Kundera writes, “If in the past people would listen to music out of love for music, nowadays it roars everywhere and all the time ‘regardless whether we want to hear it.’” Kundera quotes the German composer Schoenberg here, who states that “Radio is an enemy, a ruthless enemy marching irresistibly forward, and any resistance is hopeless.” Schoenberg is resigned to the fact that radio forces music down our throats irrespective of whether we have the ability to digest it, understand it.
There is no need to elaborate on the musical garbage that reaches our ears in elevators, cafes, dentists’ chairs, and so on. When music is fed to us, it tastes like hospital food, and all of us have our sick bowls nearby in case we need to retch. But in spite of all this, there is something to be said about that chance encounter, that moment when one is not looking for music, when one is not looking for anything at all.
(via, now with a link to go right to the playlist at iTunes.)