With all the musical events happening all over the world, all the music that is being written, premiered, and discussed, and all the "talk" about the "industry" of classical music and its various "stars," it is easy to forget that most of the music making in the world happens off the internet grid. It happens between a musician and the pitches he or she is playing. It happens in the isolated spaces of composers who spend ridiculous amounts of time worrying about how best to get from one harmony to the next, or from one note to the next. It happens when performing musicians have rehearsals. It happens in lessons. It happens when people practice, and it happens when people play concerts in places far away from you or from me, and in places that are close by.
Sometimes I get overwhelmed by the amount of musical material I can access instantly using the electronic device I am using to write this blog post. Sometimes I compare the value of access to those riches with the value of being able to find tone colors on my instrument, and (finally) being able to make them at will. When I compare the value of limitless access to recorded music with being able to move comfortably from one note to the next on my instrument, while sounding resonant and in tune, I find much more value in the ability to make something beautiful happen between one note and the next note.
I like to remember that what I am doing when I am writing, practicing, or playing is the same activity or sets of activities that musicians have been doing for centuries. That part of musical life hasn't changed, and I don't think that unlimited access to recorded music and commentary will ever change it. It is a comforting thought.