Go Back  Bike Forums > Bike Forums > General Cycling Discussion
Reload this Page >

Bicycle Music: Why Do You Ride?

Notices
General Cycling Discussion Have a cycling related question or comment that doesn't fit in one of the other specialty forums? Drop on in and post in here! When possible, please select the forum above that most fits your post!

Bicycle Music: Why Do You Ride?

Old 07-24-19, 08:08 PM
  #1  
dkatz1
Full Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Posts: 313
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 123 Post(s)
Liked 83 Times in 63 Posts
Bicycle Music: Why Do You Ride?

I would modestly have to say that I have written some of the best music about the joys of cycling ever written, "Why Do You Ride?" the title track of the album....
One day I was at my local bike shop...a guy there told me "Albert Einstein said that the three greatest inventions of the modern world were: the three masted sailing ship, the refrigerater and the bicycle..."
I thought i could put that in a piece of music...and searched and searched (with google) and coudl find NO evidence that Albert Einstein ever said that. However, I found LOTS of great things he did say, and wrote an 8 movement suite of things he said about bicycles, love, war, peace, learning, etc...called Wheelworks, the name of the local bike shop.
While searching, I found the following story about a zen teacher and his five bicycle riding students, and (after manipulating the words a bit to make them fit better), and set IT to music. Here's a youtube link:

This music is...not everyone's cup of tea, I suppose....but the story (which has a punch line) should ring true for many cyclists...

Why Do You Ride?
Darrell Katz (from a zen story)



A Zen teacher saw five of his students, returning from market on their bicycles.
When they arrived at the monastery, the teacher asked his students, “why do you ride?
Why do you ride?”*

The first student said: “The bicycle is carrying the sack of potatoes
I'm glad to get them off my back.”
The teacher praised him: “You are a smart boy.
When you grow old, you will not walk hunched over like I do.”

The second student replied: “I love to watch the trees and fields pass by as I roll down
the path! “
The teacher commended him:"your eyes are open and you see the world".

The third student replied “when I ride my bicycle, I am content to chant
nam myoho renge kyo.”
The teacher gave praise to his student: "your mind
will roll with the ease of a newly trued wheel.”

The fourth student replied to the question: "When I
ride my bicycle I live in harmony with all
sentient beings. That's why I ride.”
The teacher was pleased, and said to him, "You are
riding on the golden path of non harming."

The fifth student replied "I ride my bicycle to ride my
bicycle. I ride my bicycle to ride my bicycle "
The Zen teacher sat at the feet of his fifth student and
said, "Master! Master, I am your student.
I am your student!”

Why do you ride?
Why do you ride?



*was originally:

A Zen teacher saw five of his students, returning from market on their bicycles.
When they arrived at the monastery the teacher asked his students, “why are you riding your bicycles?”

dkatz1 is offline  
Likes For dkatz1:
Old 07-24-19, 11:39 PM
  #2  
jideta
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2019
Location: Honolulu
Posts: 262
Mentioned: 1 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 94 Post(s)
Liked 139 Times in 74 Posts
I know very little about music.
Listening to the intro the first thing that popped into my head was John Cage.
Then I thought, what if you could wind down a rear hub for 4'33"?
That would be kinda cool!

Nice work!
jideta is offline  
Likes For jideta:
Old 07-25-19, 03:14 AM
  #3  
Ryder1
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Phoenix
Posts: 144

Bikes: Evil Following MB, D'back Haanjo, Kona Unit SS

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 57 Post(s)
Liked 2 Times in 2 Posts
Holy spokes. This is fantastic! I was expecting some cringe-inducing drivel, then *this* lol.
Ryder1 is offline  
Likes For Ryder1:
Old 07-25-19, 05:16 AM
  #4  
bakerjw
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: NE Tennessee
Posts: 917

Bikes: Giant TCR/Surly Karate Monkey/Foundry FireTower/Curtlo Tandem

Mentioned: 4 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 169 Post(s)
Liked 83 Times in 61 Posts
Ah, Zen...

“It is better to travel well than to arrive.”

Buddha...
bakerjw is offline  
Likes For bakerjw:
Old 07-25-19, 06:47 AM
  #5  
BobbyG
Senior Member
 
BobbyG's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Colorado Springs, CO
Posts: 5,747

Bikes: 2015 Charge Plug, 2007 Dahon Boardwalk, 1997 Nishiki Blazer, 1984 Nishiki International, 2006 Felt F65

Mentioned: 53 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 1303 Post(s)
Liked 1,437 Times in 717 Posts
Not my cup of tea musically, but impressive! Nice mix, too!
BobbyG is offline  
Likes For BobbyG:
Old 07-25-19, 07:00 AM
  #6  
rseeker
Senior Member
 
rseeker's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2016
Location: Southeast US
Posts: 937
Mentioned: 9 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 318 Post(s)
Liked 148 Times in 104 Posts
Wow that's great! It took me a minute to get into it but then I "got" the aesthetic, and, very nice. That's an impressively large number of musical ideas in play. I like it.

Next time through I'll listen to the words.
rseeker is offline  
Likes For rseeker:
Old 07-25-19, 01:57 PM
  #7  
teejaywhy
Full Member
 
teejaywhy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2019
Location: AZ
Posts: 252

Bikes: 2018 Specialized Roubaix Expert; 2018 Breezer Thunder Expert

Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 124 Post(s)
Liked 97 Times in 57 Posts
Originally Posted by dkatz1 View Post
...
Why Do You Ride?
Darrell Katz (from a zen story)
...

By any chance, are you composing music on a Synclavier down in your basement, fueled by coffee and Winston cigarettes?
teejaywhy is offline  
Old 07-25-19, 02:58 PM
  #8  
dkatz1
Full Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Posts: 313
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 123 Post(s)
Liked 83 Times in 63 Posts
Originally Posted by teejaywhy View Post
By any chance, are you composing music on a Synclavier down in your basement, fueled by coffee and Winston cigarettes?
Uh....no. Why would you ask such an odd question? I don't have a syclavier, now that I'm old, I limit my coffee, and I quit smoking in 1983. I do compose in my basement...but the music is played by actual human beings, my 20 piece orchestra is much better than a synclavier...recorded live in studio, with everyone in the same room except the singer (in a booth)...
dkatz1 is offline  
Likes For dkatz1:
Old 07-25-19, 03:03 PM
  #9  
dkatz1
Full Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Posts: 313
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 123 Post(s)
Liked 83 Times in 63 Posts
Originally Posted by jideta View Post
I know very little about music.
Listening to the intro the first thing that popped into my head was John Cage.
Then I thought, what if you could wind down a rear hub for 4'33"?
That would be kinda cool!

Nice work!
Thanks for the thoughts...somewhat free in intro, and aleatoric, but not quite John Cage....
The story originally said "why are you riding your bicycles"...the first thing i did was come up with melodies for the words....and that line didn't sing well...so I changed it to Why do you ride.....four notes...so the begining has various instruments creating a sort of droning background....then the trumpet (with plunger mute) enters....playing those four notes "why do you ride" and is answered by the trombone with the same phrase....(which is a blues lick)...then the there's a sopranino sax solo (an instrument that most people haven't heard of or heard) over all of that....
I never more than 4 seconds of silence...
dkatz1 is offline  
Old 07-25-19, 03:05 PM
  #10  
dkatz1
Full Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Posts: 313
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 123 Post(s)
Liked 83 Times in 63 Posts
Originally Posted by Ryder1 View Post
Holy spokes. This is fantastic! I was expecting some cringe-inducing drivel, then *this* lol.
Thanks! I don't blame you for suspecting that, as I would have thought the same thing.
dkatz1 is offline  
Old 07-25-19, 03:11 PM
  #11  
teejaywhy
Full Member
 
teejaywhy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2019
Location: AZ
Posts: 252

Bikes: 2018 Specialized Roubaix Expert; 2018 Breezer Thunder Expert

Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 124 Post(s)
Liked 97 Times in 57 Posts
Originally Posted by dkatz1 View Post
Uh....no. Why would you ask such an odd question? I don't have a syclavier, now that I'm old, I limit my coffee, and I quit smoking in 1983. I do compose in my basement...but the music is played by actual human beings, my 20 piece orchestra is much better than a synclavier...recorded live in studio, with everyone in the same room except the singer (in a booth)...
I was thinking Frank Zappa. That is meant as a compliment!
teejaywhy is offline  
Old 07-25-19, 06:53 PM
  #12  
dkatz1
Full Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Posts: 313
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 123 Post(s)
Liked 83 Times in 63 Posts
Originally Posted by teejaywhy View Post
I was thinking Frank Zappa. That is meant as a compliment!
Oh, I didn't take it negatively...but, no....though I listened to Zappa in the 60's (and saw him three times) he is not even a little bit of an influence...Duke Ellington, Stravinsky, Ornette Coleman, The World Sax Quartert, Monk, Mingus, Wayne Shorter, Bartok, Messiaen....those are the kinds of things that have given me the most guidance.
dkatz1 is offline  
Old 07-25-19, 07:20 PM
  #13  
delbiker1 
Mother Nature's Son
 
delbiker1's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2016
Location: Sussex County, Delaware
Posts: 2,670

Bikes: 2014 Orbea Avant MD30, 2004 Airborne Zeppelin TI, 2003 Lemond Poprad, 2001 Lemond Tourmalet, 2014? Soma Smoothie

Mentioned: 13 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 711 Post(s)
Liked 1,046 Times in 615 Posts
I quote Freddie Mercury: " I want to ride my bicycle, I want to ride my bike. I want to ride my bicycle, I want to ride it where I like." "Fat bottom girls you make the rocking world go around. Get on you bike and ride!"
delbiker1 is offline  
Likes For delbiker1:
Old 07-25-19, 07:23 PM
  #14  
delbiker1 
Mother Nature's Son
 
delbiker1's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2016
Location: Sussex County, Delaware
Posts: 2,670

Bikes: 2014 Orbea Avant MD30, 2004 Airborne Zeppelin TI, 2003 Lemond Poprad, 2001 Lemond Tourmalet, 2014? Soma Smoothie

Mentioned: 13 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 711 Post(s)
Liked 1,046 Times in 615 Posts
Originally Posted by teejaywhy View Post
I was thinking Frank Zappa. That is meant as a compliment!
Frank Zappa and the Mothers of Invention, two of the best shows I ever saw. I believe it was 1973, Chicago Auditorium and 3 weeks later Northern Illinois University field house.
delbiker1 is offline  
Old 07-25-19, 07:44 PM
  #15  
noglider 
aka Tom Reingold
 
noglider's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: New York, NY, USA
Posts: 40,213

Bikes: 1962 Rudge Sports, 1971 Raleigh Super Course, 1971 Raleigh Pro Track, 1974 Raleigh International, 1975 Viscount Fixie, 1982 McLean, 1996 Lemond (Ti), 2002 Burley Zydeco tandem

Mentioned: 498 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 7038 Post(s)
Liked 1,836 Times in 1,127 Posts
Oh my god, this is the best thing I've heard all day. You are very good. I'm a semi-professional musician with broad experience, and you are very good.

The intro reminded me of the music of Mucca Pazza. Look them up if you haven't heard them.

Where are you? If you're in New York, I want to meet you.
__________________
Tom Reingold, tom@noglider.com
New York City and High Falls, NY
Blogs: The Experienced Cyclist; noglider's ride blog

“When man invented the bicycle he reached the peak of his attainments.” — Elizabeth West, US author

Please email me rather than PM'ing me. Thanks.
noglider is offline  
Old 07-25-19, 07:47 PM
  #16  
noglider 
aka Tom Reingold
 
noglider's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: New York, NY, USA
Posts: 40,213

Bikes: 1962 Rudge Sports, 1971 Raleigh Super Course, 1971 Raleigh Pro Track, 1974 Raleigh International, 1975 Viscount Fixie, 1982 McLean, 1996 Lemond (Ti), 2002 Burley Zydeco tandem

Mentioned: 498 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 7038 Post(s)
Liked 1,836 Times in 1,127 Posts
And who is the singer?
__________________
Tom Reingold, tom@noglider.com
New York City and High Falls, NY
Blogs: The Experienced Cyclist; noglider's ride blog

“When man invented the bicycle he reached the peak of his attainments.” — Elizabeth West, US author

Please email me rather than PM'ing me. Thanks.
noglider is offline  
Old 07-25-19, 07:53 PM
  #17  
noglider 
aka Tom Reingold
 
noglider's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: New York, NY, USA
Posts: 40,213

Bikes: 1962 Rudge Sports, 1971 Raleigh Super Course, 1971 Raleigh Pro Track, 1974 Raleigh International, 1975 Viscount Fixie, 1982 McLean, 1996 Lemond (Ti), 2002 Burley Zydeco tandem

Mentioned: 498 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 7038 Post(s)
Liked 1,836 Times in 1,127 Posts
I looked you up, and you're in the Boston area. Do you have a performance schedule?
__________________
Tom Reingold, tom@noglider.com
New York City and High Falls, NY
Blogs: The Experienced Cyclist; noglider's ride blog

“When man invented the bicycle he reached the peak of his attainments.” — Elizabeth West, US author

Please email me rather than PM'ing me. Thanks.
noglider is offline  
Old 07-26-19, 11:09 AM
  #18  
teejaywhy
Full Member
 
teejaywhy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2019
Location: AZ
Posts: 252

Bikes: 2018 Specialized Roubaix Expert; 2018 Breezer Thunder Expert

Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 124 Post(s)
Liked 97 Times in 57 Posts
Originally Posted by dkatz1 View Post
Oh, I didn't take it negatively...but, no....though I listened to Zappa in the 60's (and saw him three times) he is not even a little bit of an influence...Duke Ellington, Stravinsky, Ornette Coleman, The World Sax Quartert, Monk, Mingus, Wayne Shorter, Bartok, Messiaen....those are the kinds of things that have given me the most guidance.
Most are familiar with Zappa's rock stuff, but in the later part of his career, he spent a lot of time composing music for the orchestra. He discovered however, it was quite costly to hire an orchestra to rehearse and perform his music. Along came the Synclavier and he was able to hear the music. He did release several records of these compositions, check out The Yellow Shark.

Interestingly, Frank credited both Stravinsky and Bartok as influences.
teejaywhy is offline  
Old 07-31-19, 05:25 PM
  #19  
dkatz1
Full Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Posts: 313
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 123 Post(s)
Liked 83 Times in 63 Posts
Oh, Im familiar with all of Zappa's music...first of all, I think he really was a genius, a word that gets thrown a lot, but that really applies to him, Brilliant, talanted and a genius. But I have a lot of issues with him and his music...
Having a synth play back things is nice, but if you don't hear it in your head (as I'm sure Zappa did)it don't matter....the thing about the yellow shark is: people who mostly listen to rock music relate to it in one way, but if you're familiar with lots of 20th and 21st century music (Bartok, Straivnksy, Messiaen, Schoenberg, Ligetti, Rzewski, on and on) you're going to be a lot less impressed. it's a little bit like hearing my music (you're not the only one) and going, "That reminds me of Zappa"....my father took me to hear big bands when I was a little kid (and I can still remember some of the tunes they played)...and just out of high school...I got really into the history of the idiom and have checked out, over the years, the history of such things, from the swing era to the most contemporary...and it's been in my head most of my life and just didn't come from Zappa.
Like I said: I have issues with him...to me, he was this incredible talent who rather squandered it through arrogance, and wanting to have his cake and eat it to. He didn't really believe in studying, which is something that just about every composers on the planet has always done (like, something really lacking in his music is counterpoint)...he put a lot of energy into things that at first were funny, and then became rather sophmoric humor. This presumable was to cater to a larger audience...and He complained endlessly about not having the kind of commecrical success that say, Led Zepplin did. But he was VASTLY more succesfull at filling up concert halls and selling records than, say, one of his main heros, Edgar Varese...he wanted to be avante garde, but he wanted pop success for it. I mean: Bartok died penniless...I've studied scores of Bartok and Stravinsky (and Varese, come to think of it)...I don't think Zappa really got down to the brass tacks of these things...and: he had the best damn bands. I mean: never saw a rock band tighter...and the only person who was really a featured soloist was: Frank Zappa....and he was surrounded by people who were really better players than he was...So, like I said, I admire Zappa in a lot of ways, but I've got issues with him, too....
dkatz1 is offline  
Old 08-01-19, 04:15 AM
  #20  
Rajflyboy
Banned.
 
Rajflyboy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2018
Location: Carolinas
Posts: 1,293

Bikes: Orbea

Mentioned: 8 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 917 Post(s)
Liked 205 Times in 170 Posts
Rajflyboy is offline  
Old 08-01-19, 07:05 AM
  #21  
DT Tandem
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2017
Posts: 19
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 6 Post(s)
Likes: 0
Liked 1 Time in 1 Post
I love it, will you do more?

Thank you!

Don,
DT Tandem is offline  
Old 08-01-19, 09:17 PM
  #22  
dkatz1
Full Member
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Posts: 313
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 123 Post(s)
Liked 83 Times in 63 Posts
Here are the first three movements of a performance of Wheelworks (the whole thing is on youtube, both the live performance and the studio recording..



apocryphal əˈpäkrəfəl adjective
(of a story or statement) of doubtful authenticity, although widely circulated as being true: an apocryphal story about a former president.



Wheelworks

Text by Albert Einstein, additional lyrics (II and XI) by Darrell Katz

I. Any Intelligent Fool
Any intelligent fool can make things bigger, more complex and more violent. It takes a touch of genius, and a lot of courage, to move in the opposite direction.
II. What did Albert Einstein Say?

I would have liked to think that it was true, but I had to wonder:
Did Albert Einstein say, that the three greatest inventions of the modern world
were the three masted sailing ship, the refrigerator and the bicycle?
Then I learned that I had been mislead:
He didn't say it.
He didn't say it.
He didn't say it!
Apparently...
Most of these are apocryphal, too!

III. Riding A Bicycle
Life is like riding a bicycle. To keep your balance you must keep moving.
The only thing that interferes with my learning is my education.
Not everything that counts can be counted, and not everything that can be counted counts.
Everything should be made as simple as possible, but not simpler.
Anyone who has never made a mistake has never tried anything new.
The Only Escape from the miseries of life are music and cats.

IV. Under the Cloak Of War
It is my conviction that killing under the cloak of war is nothing but an act of murder.

V. Sticks and Stones
I know not with what weapons World War III will be fought, but World War IV will be fought with sticks and stones.

VI. The Mysterious
The most beautiful thing we can experience is the mysterious. It is the source of all true art and all science. He to whom this emotion is a stranger, who can no longer pause to wonder and stand rapt in awe, is as good as dead: his eyes are closed.
VII. We Are The Dancers
We dance for laughter, we dance for tears,
we dance for madness, we dance for fears,
we dance for hopes, we dance for screams,
we are the dancers, we create the dreams.
We create the dreams

VIII./IX. /X.

VIII. A Better Teacher

Love is a better teacher than duty (4X)

IX. Time
The only reason for time is so that everything doesn't happen at once.

X. Few Are Those
Few are those who see with their own eyes and feel with their own hearts.

XI. Relativity
When Albert Einstein was asked
About his most famous theory of relativity.
He said “I thought of that while riding my bicycle”.
I never think of the future, it comes soon enough.
dkatz1 is offline  
Likes For dkatz1:
Old 08-02-19, 11:02 AM
  #23  
zarbog
Senior Member
 
zarbog's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2019
Location: Golden Horseshoe
Posts: 147

Bikes: Giant SLR GX1 Toughroad

Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 65 Post(s)
Liked 22 Times in 16 Posts
Nice, a live orchestra playing real instruments. Pretty rare nowadays.
zarbog is offline  
Old 08-02-19, 02:12 PM
  #24  
noglider 
aka Tom Reingold
 
noglider's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: New York, NY, USA
Posts: 40,213

Bikes: 1962 Rudge Sports, 1971 Raleigh Super Course, 1971 Raleigh Pro Track, 1974 Raleigh International, 1975 Viscount Fixie, 1982 McLean, 1996 Lemond (Ti), 2002 Burley Zydeco tandem

Mentioned: 498 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 7038 Post(s)
Liked 1,836 Times in 1,127 Posts
I'm loving this. I hope I can get up to see your orchestra some time. I got your schedule in email, so thank you.
__________________
Tom Reingold, tom@noglider.com
New York City and High Falls, NY
Blogs: The Experienced Cyclist; noglider's ride blog

“When man invented the bicycle he reached the peak of his attainments.” — Elizabeth West, US author

Please email me rather than PM'ing me. Thanks.
noglider is offline  
Likes For noglider:
Old 08-04-19, 07:41 PM
  #25  
Kent T
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2018
Location: East Tennessee
Posts: 251

Bikes: 2002 Trek 800 Singletrack, 1982 Bridgestone Spica

Mentioned: 2 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 57 Post(s)
Liked 40 Times in 31 Posts
I ride hearing music in various meters in my head, as space and time move forward in unusual meter and time signatures, the left drags the right side, as legs move in spastic, out of synchronization, time, as I conquer terrain in my own way, at my own pace. Your cadence is unique, your own, how you make it work for or against you, is what you bring to and contribute to it. How you handle the hills, valleys, ups, and downs of life and pedal through them is your own. Find your balance, and your pace in life, own it, make it your own. It is you, your soul, your passion, your inner being. Walk up the hills you can't climb. Move your way! This is material for you to think about and digest, in homage of Sheldon Brown, and how he dealt with physical challenges and adversity. And also how I deal with my own similar issues.
Kent T is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service - Do Not Sell or Share My Personal Information -

Copyright © 2023 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.