The Etude magazine, July 1892, p. 131
MUSIC A NECESSITY OF NATURE.
DARWIN says: "Neither the enjoyment nor the capacity of producing musical notes are faculties of the least direct use to man in reference to his ordinary habits of life." Physiologically he may be correct, but as soon as mere rudimentary actions are left, and existence becomes life, his statement is completely false. Indeed, music is, as this philosopher elsewhere says, bound up in daily life, and a necessity of existence. Of its usefulness in daily life there can be no question. What would religious services be without organs and singing? What would armies be without bands? If music were a luxury, would people spend so much time and money on it? It is not to obtain mere ear-enjoyment; it is because it is a necessity to satisfy certain requirements of the mind. It enters into the chemistry of the mind as salt does into the chemistry of the body. Here and there you will meet with a person who says, "I never eat saltI do not require it." Well, you are sorry for him. There is evidently something wrong in his physical constitution. So when any one assumes a tone of lofty superiority, and boasts that he knows nothing about music, and pretends not to be able to distinguish one tune from another, you may either accept his statement with some reserve, or conclude that there is something wrong in his physical or mental faculties, and recommend an aurist.Arthur Sullivan.