"Art is how we decorate space, music is how we decorate time."
This quote, attributed to neo-expressionist Jean-Michel Basquiat, succinctly describes the artistry of music. Whether a top 40 hit with a pulsing beat or a melancholy melody from a string quartet, there is a song for every time, place, and mood. While silence can be golden, music can be any hue, and that is something worth celebrating.
Make Music Day, now celebrated annually on June 21, was launched in France in 1982, then named Fête de la Musique. Since its inception Make Music Day has grown and is now celebrated in over 1,000 cities in 120 countries including San José! Start with the Make Music Day main page to get an idea of the scope of this celebration. If you're in San José, check out the Make Music Day 2023 page to find out more about the free crafts, activities, and concerts on Make Music Day (June 21).
Of course, the library has a few ways you can start making music, too!
Listen With the Library
There are a number of ways to decorate time when you have a library card. The fastest way to throw on some tunes is through Hoopla, which offers a library of streamable music. All you need is your library card to get started, and music aficionados can get listening on their browser or in Hoopla's app. Indeed as I write this blog, I've thrown on ABBA Gold (Dancing Queen, of course) via Hoopla, but there's so much more to explore; from popular soundtracks (Hamilton, Encanto, La La Land, and more), to other greatest hits (Elton John also caught my eye), current popular artists and chart toppers (Taylor Swift, Lizzo, and more), award winners (like 2023 Grammy Award Winners), kids tunes (Best of Raffi anyone?), and more. Start decorating the minutes right away with eMusic!
Of course the library also houses an expansive collection of CDs, which are are available via hold to our public any time through our catalog. Yeah yeah, a bit retro to the whippersnappers reading this, but you know, your fancy-pants Blu-Ray players can play CDs! And if you're an audiophile looking to expand your listening, it might be time to raid a 2nd hand store for some "retro" tech. If you really want to be a 90s kid you can use in conjunction with your old Discman and CD book for supreme nostalgia purposes. Search for your favorite artists in our catalog, or try one of this librarian's favorites from the selection below.
You should C Ds CDs.
Learn and Play at the Library
While the library at times offers programs on how to play, we do have a static collection of music courses through LinkedIn Learning. Get started by grabbing your library card and accessing LinkedIn Learning. Search their expansive catalog of courses available on demand and learn to play piano, guitar, ukulele; take singing lessons; even learn the basics of music synthesizers.
Once you've got the basics, you can also check the library catalog for sheet music to add new tunes to your own repertoire. If you're a piano player like me, check out this basic search to get an idea of just how many songs you can learn! And if you're feeling extra creative, you might pick up a book like this one to make your own instrument and start jamming!
If you'd rather bask in the glory of musicians past, you can take a deep-dive into your favorite artist using Rock's Backpages. Rock's Backpages is the world's largest archive of music journalism, featuring over 50,000 articles on artists from Aaliyah to ZZ Top, with a new edition every Friday.
Celebrate at the Library
Of course, we will be celebrating in person for Make Music Day this year with Make Music events at the library! You can find a list of events for Make Music Day on June 21, 2023 here.
However you celebrate Make Music Day this year, I encourage you to decorate your time as much as you can; and SJPL will be here to help!