On the eve of New Years, 2009:
I was eight years old when the big 2000 came around. At the prompting of my parents, I can faintly remember what I was doing that night the ball dropped, and everyone held their breaths waiting for computers to fail.
Throughout the last 10 years, I've counted ahead to the year of my graduation.
"2010! Wow, how far away that is!"
The last 10 years have brought new friends, and birthed deeper friendships with those I've had since before I can remember. I've had killer birthday parties, bummer moments, and many great opportunities.
Thinking back (as far as I can remember) into the last decade, one thing sticks out in my head above the rest.
I've learned to love music.
Growing up, I never understood the point of music. Sure, I was that kid that knew all the oldie songs (thanks to my dad) and could sing "Yellow Submarine" or "Brown Eyed Girl" until something else, just as annoying or catchy, popped into my head.
I didn't get the core of music. Part of that probably was due to mere immaturity.
Regardless, I owe my love of music to Lee and Justin Gaupp. They showed me the heart of hardcore, the love behind lyrics, and the symbolism of symphony. Their ever-increasing taste for tunes inspired me to develop a music palette of my own, and it has since grown to include artists from nearly every genre.
Much has happened in my life since that realization. I've grown, and grieved. I've loved, and laughed.
Through everything, however, one band has remained close to my heart. Because of their lyrics? Partially. Because of their amazing performances? Incompletely. Because of their heart? Now we're talking.
The band's name is an acronym for "Multi-sensory Aesthetic Experience,"From their website:
Mae started in 2001, released their first album, Destination: Beautiful, in 2003 through Tooth and Nail Records, and have since released a total of six albums- with a seventh on the way, and have taken up the weight of a label all their own, called Cell Records. Their goal is to connect with people, and to do so through all of the senses. Their concerts are an amazing ensemble of music and video synced together to form not only an entertaining show, but an experience that will stick in your mind, make you think, and touch your heart. They are a concrete mix of lighter Alternative Rock to solid Rock.
Multi-Sensory Aesthetic Experience
is the study of sensation, perception,
emotion, and meaning in art and music.
To me, Mae is about more then music, they're about life. I've listened to them during the most depressing days, and during the brightest moments. When I hear a song, it's more than music. It's experiences, individual moments, and memories laced together with the needle and thread of harmony. I can see my past behind me, and I get a glimpse of the future before me. And, most important of all, it helps give me context for where I am now. This year, especially, their albums (m)orning and (a)fternoon have hit me right where I'm at. Life is a journey. I am in process. And Love is the most important thing to hold on to.
Perhaps one of their shirts says it best:
This decade has brought a smile to my face, and tears to my eyes, as has Mae. This decade has helped me realize that growing up is more then watching the years go by. Mae has given me a soundtrack for that realization.
I think that we've got what it takes, to get this heart start beating again.
So take it all the way.
And our hearts are on The Everglow.
So just let go and fall into it.
May this next decade be prosperous and incredibly real for you. May you grow, change, and draw near to Papa.
If it interests you, check out what Mae is doing now. Give them a listen. Particularly, go buy The Everglow, followed by (m)orning.