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  • Writer's pictureAli Hoyt

Spring 2021 Virtual Listening Session: "Color My World"

Updated: Mar 16, 2021

Sunday, March 14 @ 4pm PT / 7pm ET (on Zoom)

(registration is closed as of Sun, Mar. 14, 2021)

As we near almost a year since March 2020... when COVID became a household name, the shutdown began and quarantine was still just a novel concept existing solely in medieval writings like The Decameron... I am drawn to reflect on what the month of March is usually known for... which is the start of Spring.

To me, Spring means the start of new life. Although I'm now based in sunny Los Angeles, I grew up most of my life with seasonal weather in New England (on the Northern East Coast of the U.S.) That meant lots of chilly days, fires in the fireplace, snowball fights, sledding, and of course lots of snow days (some of my favorite winter memories involve waking up with the news that school is canceled due to snow!)

Once March rolled around it usually still looked a lot like winter with icy roads, slushy sidewalks (and no, I don't mean the 7-Eleven drink) and dark mornings where your face feels like it's going to fall off as you speed walk through city streets to gratefully arrive in the warmth of the subway. And although it felt like winter would never end, I always knew March meant the start of spring. We would soon start to see little plant buds peaking their way through the frosty dirt or the icy tree branches. It's the point when old life begins to step aside to make way for Act II - when new life comes to stage.

And what do we typically think of when we say Spring? For me, it is colors. Winter's curtain of silver, white, gray and darker tones is gradually lifted for other colors to come back to the surface.

How often do we go about life without actually seeing the colors in front of us? I often catch myself going through days on autopilot, chugging along moment by moment but not really being conscious of what my own eyes are seeing.

The same goes for listening. So often we dampen our sense of hearing without even realizing it. How many times have you listened to a song, but not really stopped to listen to each layer of the song - from the bass, to the drum, vocal mix, sampled sounds, etc. Here is one of my favorite games to play when I feel anxious or scared about something: I put a song on my headphones and try to see how many layers I can point out. By the end of the song I usually feel calmer and less bothered by whatever was giving me anxiety.

If this practice of being present to what we're hearing and seeing is something you want to bring more into your life or you're curious, I welcome you to tune into my next Virtual Listening Session in celebration of the birth of Spring.

Through the songs I have thoughtfully chosen for our session we will be focusing on the symbolism of Spring, revitalization, and most importantly, COLORS. I aim to create a space of calm and comfort, to tap into our senses and slow down through listening to music -- together.

Sunday, March 14 @ 4pm PT / 7pm ET (on Zoom)

(registration is closed as of Sun, Mar. 14, 2021)

We'll be virtually gathering on the first day of Daylight Saving Time, which I think is very apropos to our listening theme -- it's the visual proof that Spring is almost here and longer days are on the way.

Length: ~2 hours (feel free to tune in at any point, there's no pressure and you can stay for as long or as short as you'd like)

Virtual Location: On Zoom (link/dial-in info will be sent a few days before to those who have RSVP'd)

Who is Invited: All are welcome! Feel free to invite your friends/family by passing along the RSVP link.

The format is simple:

  • Grab a good pair of headphones if you're by yourself, or if you're with someone else sit together and ensure your computer volume is clear and easy to hear.

  • Find a good spot to cozy up, and maybe bring a favorite pillow, blanket or other comforting item.

  • You can stay for as long or as short as you'd like.

  • There's no expectation to engage with others or socialize - you can simply close your eyes, turn off your video camera and listen; or you can keep your camera on and join the conversation in the Zoom Chat box. Whatever you feel comfortable with that day!

My intention, as with all my virtual listening sessions, is that you'll walk away feeling calm, centered, comforted, and reminded of the power of your own senses to bring you peace whenever life starts to feel like a whirlwind. And maybe you'll discover a few new songs you'd never heard before! You can always come back to music (really stopping to listen) and colors (truly stopping to see what your eyes are soaking in) to get to the core of what Spring (and new life) is all about: re-centering and revitalizing ourselves.

If you haven't joined one of my virtual listening sessions before, or you'd like a refresher on the format and purpose, please check out my blog post from December 2020 on my Virtual Listening Session: Holiday Edition!

Questions? If you have any questions feel free to reach out to me through the 'Contact' tab of my website.

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