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Music as a Language.


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Only had time to listen to the first few minutes, so not sure how or if he addressed these points, but I'm pretty sceptical about the whole analogy (not the first time I've heard it). There is some kind of (poorly understood) biological wiring that allows infants to learn their first languages in the way they do do, we all but know that for certain. And this ability fades after infancy. If one doesn't learn a language in infancy one is essentially doomed; on the other hand, those out of infancy must learn second languages through calculated study.


No one becomes a fluent musician in his infancy, and someone who never hears music or at least never attempts to make it in early childhood can still learn an instrument later on. I think what Wooten is essentially getting at is that the ideal way to learn to play is to start really young and learn to play everything by ear. With regards to the electric guitar - the only instrument I have any familiarity with - the greatest virtuosos learned and espouse this way. Still I'm not convinced it's the most pragmatic way for someone who takes up an instrument in later life with less time on his hands that a young child.

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I like the analogy but it's obviously not a perfect parallel. Learning theory and practicing technique is a mandatory part of learning new skills, but I like the idea that learning an instrument isn't the same as learning "music". I know so many people who can't tap on a desk in time with what they're listening to. The video is definitely worth watching through.



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