a letter from arizona

Dear Danielle,

Tonight I ‘met’ (online) a young guy by the name of Roland. He lives 2 blocks down the street from me in Manhattan, we’re both avid Dark Tower fans (a stephen king novel that ironically features a main character named Roland) and share about a million other coincidences. We got to talking and he showed me your blog, Music is Art. I have to admit, I’m really not an avid blogger, and I don’t read a lot of blogs (mostly IGuessImFloating) but yours is downright captivating. You write beautifully and at the right moments, your design is beyond elegant and your mission statement calls after my own heart.

It may sound trite to talk about the title of your blog, but I really do believe that many people forget that music is art. Music these days has been so co-opted by every other form of media that people forget that it’s not something you should take for granted or only enjoy when it comes coupled with something else. Music is itself a phenomenal and extremely vital artform. In my opinion, music could be the salvation of the world. I’ve always thought, even if America were to become a police state and I was to be imprisoned and subjected to the worst form of torture, I truly believe that I could retreat into my own mind, write beautiful music there and feel at peace. I am a huge supporter of every kind of artistic expression, but there is little in the world I believe that compares to the healing power and spiritual informativeness of music.

At this point, I have to admit that I am a professional musician, because to go any further without disclosing that fact might cause you to think I’m merely buttering you up for a review instead of actually adressing your humanity and your obvious passion, which I share. I would love to share my music with you and I’m going to send you some visual art which I think you will find very moving, but please believe me when I say that I’m not just trying to seduce you into writing something that’s going to get me more hits on myspace or something like that.

I am in a band called Arizona. We work with a god-gifted visual artist named Deems, who literally will put on an Arizona record and “draw what he sees.” I didn’t want to get into my own work in this eMail, but very literally, Arizona and its artist prove that music IS art. The two are one and the same. Below are links to our music, and artwork that Deems has made which is a straight up translation of sound into the visual realm. Watching this transformation is nothing short of breathtaking to me.

l i s t e n

some kind of chill [welcome back dear children, 2006]

thimble [fameseeker and the mono, 2007]


Anyway, back to the topic at hand: music is art. I was saying that I think a lot of people forget that and that your blog is very special among the ones I’ve read in that the art of music and creative expression is truly at the heart of your page and, seemingly, the artists you choose to highlight. But going back to what I was saying earlier, I feel that even some of the people who do consider music to be art don’t make that final step to the conclusion that music is life. I know music is life because I live for music; I have dedicated my human vessel and the myriad of other experiences I could be having during my youth to bringing forth artistic expression in the hopes that it will resonate with and contribute to the healing of the spirit of my generation. Yours is a blog that clearly makes that leap, you truly seem to be highlighting artists who share that spiritual impulse in their music or artwork; people who are not just making art, but who are expressing the potential of a human life spent in the service of art.

So this letter is just my way of thanking you for the inspiration you’ve given me tonight (this is a beautiful way to end my night, writing about the topic dearest to my heart and listening to an artist (Emilie Simon) who I’ve never heard of before…

Sincerely yours,
Benjamin Morris Wigler

artwork by Deems

8 Responses

  1. Ben

    wow, I think this is the most comments we’ve ever gotten on a blog post besides one or two on iguessimfloating – thanks for the feedback. I love this blog too, and I’m glad I was able to articulate all of your love for it as well! Isn’t the net an amazing thing? long live MIA! the blog, not the singer… well, her too, why not!

  2. PollyMagoo

    The greatest thing is that your love for music flows through your music, which is not always the case…I really like these tracks. And Emilie Simon, yes : vive la France 🙂

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  4. tony hogan

    I love the artwork. fantastic voice in Chill and the texture of the tune is nice and the harmonies, extremely likeable, interesting slide …i like it a lot and i’m pretty darn fussy. congratulations

  5. musicisart

    awww mj 🙂 im very thankful for you, always so nice to hear from you!

    roland~ thanks so much for sharing MIA with benjamin…. sorry it took me awhile to share but i didnt forget, this meant alot to me!

  6. Roland

    Haha, I remember that night. Everything’s so connected in the city; it’s pretty incredible. Great thoughts by Ben, and Arizona is great fun live, definitely worth checking out. Thanks!