Young people are fond of different styles of music. What kinds are popular now? What kind of music do you like? Why? Can you think of a day without music?
We can hear music everywhere: in the streets and at home, over the radio and on TV, in the shops and in the parks. People all over the world are fond of music. They listen to music, they dance to music, they learn to play musical instruments.
But what is music? Specialists explain that music isn’t only a combination of pleasant sounds. It is an art which reflects life. There are a lot of different kinds of music. Some of them appeared long ago, and some are modern. For example, folk music appeared long ago, but it is still alive. There are many local performers, choirs and folk groups in Russia; but perhaps the most famous singer is Nadezhda Babkina. Folk songs are very tuneful and pleasant to listen to. Classical music is often associated with the music of the past. However, this style also includes music being written now, and we may speak of modern classical music. Rap is a modern musical style where the singer speaks or shouts the words in time to music with a steady beat. Such groups as Public Enemy or House of Pain are leaders in this style.
Great Britain has produced more popular music stars than any other country. Over the last 30 years rock and pop music have been very popular in Britain. The Beatles, with their style of singing, eloquent and exciting, is still one of the most popular groups. British groups often set new trends in music. New styles, groups and singers continue to appear. Some of the more recent pop groups are Dire Straits, Eurhythmics and Spice Girls. Many of the new bands have been able to use the changes in technology to develop their music. Computerised drum machines, synthesisers and other electronic instruments are now just as popular as the piano and electric guitars.
Tastes differ. So people’s musical interests range from pop and rock music, which are extremely popular nowadays, especially among young people, to classical music and opera.
My favourite style of music is pop music, because it is breathtaking and full of energy. When I listen to pop music it makes me remember happy times and forget the problems of everyday life. It helps me to relax when I’m tired, and entertains me when I’d like to have fun. My favourite group is Abba. It was formed in 1973 in Sweden. Abba’s cheerful tunes made them international pop stars and one of the most successful groups of the seventies. Their most famous songs ("Waterloo”, "Money, Money, Money”, "Knowing Me, Knowing You”, etc.) often topped European charts. Though the group doesn’t exist any more, it is still popular with people of all ages. I can’t but admire their style of singing. I find it fascinating and overwhelming. When I have free time I listen to their records. I also like having background music while I am working.
I don’t mind listening to dance music, especially when I go to disco clubs. This style of music is catchy and firey and I like catchy tunes. It makes me more energetic.
It’s a pity that many young people like to listen only to modern music. As for me, I also enjoy listening to classical music. I find it tuneful and appealing. Classical music is always a complex of emotions. It gives me delight, pleasure and a sense of happiness. Some pieces of classical music are really wonderful. Not long ago I listened to the First Piano Concerto, composed by Tchaikovsky. The power of his music captivated me. The impression was overwhelming.
The music I hate is heavy metal. I find it noisy and dreadful. When I listen to this style of music it presents to my mind pictures of dark days. Though some young people are fond of this style of music, it is not to everyone’s taste. To my mind, music too loud can destroy our ears. I am indifferent to other styles of music. For example, I don’t mind listening to jazz. Improvisation is an important part of this style, that’s why a jazz song may sound a little different each time it is played. I think that jazz is a mixture of many different kinds of music, but I consider it a bit complicated.
My mother and father approve of my tastes in music. Though they prefer to listen to classical and "bard music”, they think that, on the whole, modern music is not too bad. My parents agree that each generation has its own tastes.
It goes without saying that music plays a very important role in people’s lives. It reflects our moods and emotions. Music appeals to our hearts and transforms our feelings. It conquers our souls and enriches our minds. Besides, listening to music is the perfect way to spend free time and not to feel bored. You can hardly find a person who doesn’t like or need music, who never sings or dances. Music is beauty in sounds, it is our magic source of inspiration.
1. What is your attitude to music?
2. How can music influence people?
3. What do you think about classical/rock/pop music?
4. What sort of music do you like?
5. What does music make you think of?
6. What music irritates you?
7. What famous British musicians/composers/singers/groups do you know?
8. What is your favourite musician/singer/group?
9. What is your parents’ attitude towards your favourite music?
10. Where and when do you listen to music?
11. Do you like to go to concerts? Why?