Contrary to the general assumption

A person that is lacking a sense, focuses on life with the other ones he/she has.
Yet, in regard to musicians another relation is often assumed: An extraordinary threshold of originality, of sensibility and sense.

The perception of blind musicians is mostly accompanied with an aura of admiration. Ray Charles, Andrea Bocelli and many other persons were blind and made great achievements in music. Yet, each of these persons has his/her own relationship with the inability to see. For one it is an inspiration, a reason for being more attentive, or simply just a destiny that doesn’t have an influence of great importance in the life or on the work. The statements of each of these blind musicians are already biographies on their own.

The New York based Neo-Soul and Jazz musician Raul Midón, whereas describes in an interview in the German newspaper Tagesspiegel, that the relationship between his blindness and his work as a musician simply is a challenge.

“I don’t think so. I really don’t…There is a notion out there, that blindness makes you a better musician. I think it is maybe only in the sense, that it limits your options. You don’t have the ability to wait tables, to do some other jobs to support your music habit. So as a blind musician if you want to do it full time you have to be good enough and committed enough to do it full time, because you don’t have other choices. Maybe in that sense, blindness helps you but not in any other sense. I don’t think it makes you better or more sensitive to music or anything like that, I really don’t.”

“[…] I think you have to work harder in life, as a blind person. Because just to get to school, just do to the basic things. It just talks longer, more work. […] Even as a blind musician, you have less options.“

Midón describes that only the extra effort to make it as a individual might be a driver for his musical work. Since being limited, forces you to find your won way wit a special commitment.

“It’s a different choice.”

Contrary to the general assumption, here we have an example that blindness not necessarily entails extraordinary music. But maybe the required ambition and commitment, the necessity and the effort that is required, which is the determining factor for individual shaping power and impressive results.

Reference (in German, podcast interview in English):

Altun, Atila: Interview mit Raul Midón “Ich wäre gern hier gewesen, als Berlin noch geteilt war”. Tagesspiegel, 07.03.2013 (abgerufen am 08.04.2013)

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