I entirely agree with that, even if there may have been a slightly different tone to some of my previous posts. There are different ways one can encounter art and its absolutely legitimate to switch of your consciousness and just let the music carry you. Some music works best that way.
That's an interesting point of view, especially when you say that sometimes it's legitimate to just let the music carry you, and that some music works best that way.
In my experience, listening to something like Cage's 4'33
is an entirely different experience compared with listening to something such as Stravinsky's Rite of Spring
. Because of my extensive musical background (M.A. in Music Education, and a couple of decades of public performance, band conducting and arranging, etc.), when I listen to the Rite of Spring
, I can't help but recognize and try to analyze Stravinsky's orchestration, harmonies, rhythms, etc., while I'm enjoying the listening experience. This just comes naturally to me with that kind of complex, 20th-century work.
However, when I listen to (or play) one of Sousa's marches, it's an entirely different experience. Although to some extent my mind is recognizing the various countermelodies and band arrangement parameters, nevertheless, I also experience an immediate visceral and enjoyable reaction.
Then, when I play jazz, again it's an entirely different experience -- more visceral than analytical. I also find myself "playing to" what the other people in the jazz combo are also playing, trying to "fit in" what I'm doing with what they're doing. For me, this kind of improvisational jazz performance is almost entirely visceral and feelingful, with very little analysis going on in my mind. I kind of "get lost in the experience."
Something similar happens when I play rock (on the keyboard). There’s very little analytical stuff going on; and more of an "immediate musical experience" as the pounding rhythms and the harmonies sort of "take hold" of me.