One Note At a Time

ONE NOTE AT A TIME
BY JDD

Where did the first note came from? And when did the first combination of notes reach humanity’s ear and what made us appreciate it so much that we evolved music into the form that it is today? Nobody really knows the answers to these questions. Music have been with us for a long as we can remember. And like most things that we take as innately part of us, music just is…

THE POWER OF MUSIC. While the origins of music is something that we cannot define, there are things about music we generally accept as true. All of us agree that music is a powerful thing. Music is one of the very few forces in nature that can tweak our emotions to make us laugh and cry. Music can both take us back through time or move us to the future. Tunes can trigger our memories just as effectively as they can make us imagine our aspirations.

Past and present generations were shaped because of musical influences and trends. We talk about the 60s, 70s, 80s, 90s, 00s, etc. in correlation with corresponding musical vogues. Nationalistic pride is at times tied up to a particular song. Outside of pop culture and within socio-political arenas, music was used as a medium to express the common emotions of the masses – joy, grief, angst, anger – enough to propel these emotions into collective actions that oftentimes shaped the pathways of our histories.

At the personal level, we interrelate experiences, moods, memorable events with specific songs. We dedicate songs to loved ones. We give praise to our Creator with songs – and every time we do so, in our hearts of hearts, we know that He can hear us.

In as much that music is a force of nature, it must be harnessed and used properly for the good of man. Our landscaped is littered with the use of music and musical influences that uphold negative values. Unguarded, it has moved those with the simplest minds to anchor their identities to such thereby creating a sub-culture that perpetuates negativity in a world already afflicted with pains and sufferings.

If enough of humanity use music to share and love and laugh, then we will have a better place to live in.

SONGS. A musical composition is a mystery on its own. Notes, harmonies and words channeled to selected individuals as gifts – transcribed to finished songs to charm and affect us in so many different ways. It is as if the elements of the cosmos have conspired to grace our existence with sonic vibrations aimed at enhancing our emotional experiences to limits that is unique to us individually – but with the power to embrace us collectively. We have spoken with some of our songwriters and they have different explanations on where songs came from… Some said: “…songs were written…” Some said: “…wrote songs during heightened emotions through a momentary inspiration by exacerbated by personal circumstances…” Some harvest notes from the air saying that the notes and the words were all around us floating in spaces waiting to be plucked and arranged in musical compositions…

PURPLEJAMM, STREET CHILDREN and VARIOUS CAUSES. Purplejamm was conceptualized around the mid part of the first decade of this century. Initially, purplejamm revolved around the premise that musical gifts must be given back as gifts to those who have nothing in life. Simply put: “Purplejamm will be a venue where musical gifts channeled through songwriters for their intended benefactors: the street children… the environment, etc.”… On the earliest songwriters of purplejamm argued that the “street children” represents those who have nothing in society. By law, the street children have neither the marketable skills to trade nor the legal capacity to own tradable properties to allow them to be integrated with the economic framework of society. They cannot be part of our economic system for the simple reason that they are children. Nelson Mandela put it succinctly: “A civilization can be judged by how it treats its children…” Immortal words from a great man… If these words are true, then our civilization failed miserably… There are an estimated 5 million children living in the streets as reported by the United Nations. In this day and age where wealth creation allows for individuals to be wealthier than entire nations, street children roam our streets unnoticed and unseen by our collective psyches. Most of us are desensitized by and numbed to their daily presence. The initial set of songs in purplejamm are meant to give these children something that they own. Something that they can finally call their own. Songs that will allow them to be part of the economic framework – at this time armed with intellectual property that will allow them to generate funds for themselves in a more perpetual manner. In the same token, Jimi Hendrix one of the most celebrated musicians of all time once said: “Music doesn’t lie. If there is something to be changed in this world, then it can only happen through music…”

Beyond our personal challenges and afflictions lies bigger worthy causes that needs to be addressed.

PURPLEJAMM and INDEPENDENT MUSICIANS. Ultimately, the whole purplejamm model evolved to a more expanded version… The creation of a venue where music can be used as a force of good in a more universal and permanent fashion. Music as an art is not exclusive to commercial artists whose music occupy our airwaves on a regular basis. The world of music is populated by artists who are unsigned and independent – oftentimes dubbed “underground” to denote non-commercial persuasions. A lot of these independent musicians play music not for fame, financial gratification or recognition. They are musicians by heart and music come to them because they are channels thereof. Most independent musicians are not shackled by the trappings of commercialism. Those who are not expresses their artistry in pure and raw forms – unbounded by market studies and corporate strategies.

The model of using the first set of songs in purplejamm to help street children was replicated and expanded to welcome all possible causes that we can think of – and the source of the musical gifts to helps these causes were also replicated and expanded to include the songs of every independent artists from all over the world who wanted to use their music to help heal the world.

Purplejamm is launched using original music by independent filipino songwriters and artists . Each and every song were dedicated to help various causes. The marriage of songs and advocacies is not only meant to appeal to our emotions and psyches but also to immortalize issues that we are suppose to remember – so that the same mistakes will not be repeated again.

As a case in point, purplejamm artists wrote “Ang Habilin” – a song dedicated for the “fallen 44”. The song serves to immortalize our fallen heroes – their courage, their dedication to country and their bravery. Their song will still be here long after all of us are gone… Long after all those donations have been spent and all the politicking exhausted… The song will remind generations of what our generation lost but it will also remind them of heroism and nationalism at its best.

PURPLEJAMM and ITS SONGS. Purplejamm songs are mainstream in character. Purplejamm does not require artists to submit songs that evoke sadness, anger or negative emotions to suit the conditions of the beneficiaries. It is simply art in whatever inspired form dedicated to help people. While some purplejamm songs are anthemic because they were written for a specific theme or situation, most of the songs uploaded in purplejamm are regular mainstream songs in different genres – Rock, Pop, Jazz, RnB, Alternative, Reggae, etc.