Earlier this week The Blonde in the house and I went to see one of our favorite groups from when we were young. We realized that it would not be the same singers from the old days, although one of the performers had apparently been with the group for some time. However, we thought we would hear the lush tomes with different performers. It did not quite work that way. We did hear some of the old songs, but the difference was that it was now in what is apparently considered today’s fashion. The fashion being LOUD!
When I speak of loud, let me explain why I felt that way. A year or more ago, The Blonde complained that I was not hearing her (beyond the normal husband mode). I finally went to a hearing specialist who informed me that my hearing had gone south, especially in the higher ranges wherein my good wife’s speech range lies. It probably explained why I had no trouble hearing when playing golf with the guys, but home was different. In any case, I now am the proud possessor of two hearing aids.
This leads back to the discussion of listening in the modern fashion. The group mentioned above did play a few of the old songs, plus some newly recorded ones. What was common among all the songs was the loudness of the music. Now, the Savannah Center is fairly big, and we were back in the elevated stands. However, what I had to do in order to keep my sanity was remove my hearing utensils and stuff my ears with tissue. I also had a half patch on my left ear due to a dermatology incident. I had no trouble hearing the music although it was still too loud.
Apparently, I was not alone as after one hour and ten minutes, the group played the “it’s time to go …” A good part of the audience took them at their word and started leaving while they were still playing. We stayed with the thought that groups always do encores, and we hoped that they would sing one more of our favorites – even if too loudly. They did not return which is unusual – unless they did after we finally left. We were at the early session. Hopefully, the later session did better.
Perhaps, someone can explain to me why music has to be so loud today. I would think that the new generations will have to get hearing aids sooner than I did. We moved to The Villages in 2000. The Savannah Center opened about the same time. The Villages then started having performances, including a series that you could purchase ($8-10 per couple per show). They were relatively decent, except for one time they offered the world’s worst presentation of “South Pacific”. We still laugh about it when discussing the matter with neighbors who attended with us. However, one thing that stands out from those performances is that they were not so incredibly loud.
I think I will get with my old friend, Helmut who can invent anything. With his help, I bet we could come up with a hearing aid that would go into “suppressed” mode anytime music (or anything) exceeded a certain decibel level. Unfortunately, it does take forever to have a patent approved. However, on the bright side conceivably music would change during the wait with a new concept coming into fruition – quiet music. Wouldn’t that be amazing!
Barry Evans writes about Life in The Villages for Villages-News.com