Melodies Inspired By Nature

By Kudrat Sekhon

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  • Nature has never failed to inspire us. A bird’s melodious voice, rustling of the leaves, the sound of breaking of waves, or the flowing of a river. Such sounds are innately musical and have a profound effect on our minds.All these sounds can be grouped under Bio music or Eco music. This term is used to describe the inherent musicality present in nature including the various sounds of nature from birds, and animals.

    Fun Fact: Birds and whales have vocal learners i.e.; they can compose their own songs in addition to the music taught to them by their parents. Therefore, it is safe to claim that all living beings have the natural ability to make music. It is a recreational activity and an important part of our lives.

    These natural sounds have been a source of great inspiration for some of the best musicians and poets across the world.

    • Beethoven’s Pastoral Symphony Number Six is one such melody that is inspired by nature and while being ages old continues to be one of the most well-known melodies in the entire world.
    • Vivaldi’s 4 Seasons is another such melody that pays homage to all the 4 seasons that we come across in a year. The music has a playful, crisp and carefree tone that resembles the Spring season which is about birth and frivolity associated with the childhood of a human. The summer music is sombre, followed by autumn in which the cool air is signified by the softly arching strings. Then finally comes winter associated with the circle of life coming to an end along with Vivaldi’s composition.
    • Berlioz composed the Symphonie Fantastique which resonates with a thunderstorm. The slow movement of the symphony is symbolic of distant thunder.

    Not only foreign symphonies but even Indian melodies have also been inspired by nature. Songs from the movie Swades have been greatly inspired by nature as the movie is all about a person connecting with the nature of the country, in which he was born.

    There are many poets who have also been inspired by nature. William Wordsworth and Samuel Taylor Coleridge are two of the most famous English poets who have always been inspired by the simplicity of nature and the same simplicity is reflected in people who are close to nature. Closer home Subhadra Kumari Chauhan, Sohan Lal Dwiwedi have brought out the beauty of nature through their works.

    Nature has been cherished by many other famous literary figures as well as playwrights like Shakespeare. He employed the forces of nature to draw a parallel between the emotions of characters and how these feelings were reflected in nature. The Tempest by William Shakespeare opens with a storm set off by duke-magician Prospero to entice his usurping brother to the island where he has been exiled. A world-famous musician Tchaikovsky composed a symphony based on these dramatic occurrences in the play.

    To connect with nature, one should be more aware of one’s surroundings. It is a must to go for walks with pets and if there is not one, justenjot walks in nature’s lap . If one ever listens with intent, there is an ample amount of music present in nature. National parks are a great place to start. Listen to the silence, the sound of a water body , a brook. Even listening to the wind pass through the branches of a tree can be soothing in nature.

    Music is a structural organisation of sounds. When all these sounds are framed in an organised manner, they become melodious as well as rhythmic. This pattern of rhythmic sounds is already available in nature, thus, inspiring people to make a symphony.

    Nature has inspired other art forms as well. Artists have always been inspired by the myriad of colours present in nature. Artists have tried to depict the dawn and the dusk as beautiful scenes in their paintings and poets have tried to encapsulate them in their writing. Therefore, nature is the best teacher irrespective of profession, race, caste, or class.

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