Clicky Quotes | Jeff Cranfill Music


Here is a growing collection of quotes over the years from many sources – musical and otherwise.

“Popular music helps you to forget and great music helps you to remember.”

Robert Shaw

“The way to write American music is simple. All you have to do is be an American and then write any kind of music you wish.”

Virgil Thomson

“Life is hard, It’s harder if you’re stupid.”

John Wayne

“Tomorrow hopes we learned something from yesterday.”

John Wayne

“A painter paints pictures on canvas.  But musicians paint their pictures on silence.”

Leopold Stokowski

“Music washes away from the soul the dust of everyday life.”

Berthold Auerbach

“Take a music bath once or twice a week for a few seasons.  You will find it is to the soul what a water bath is to the body.”

Oliver Wendell Holmes

“If a composer could say what he had to say in words he would not bother trying to say it in music.”

Gustav Mahler

“Music is what feelings sound like.”

Author Unknown

“My idea is that there is music in the air, music all around us; the world is full of it, and you simply take as much as you require.”

Edward Elgar

“Play the music, not the instrument.”

Author Unknown

“[An intellectual] is someone who can listen to the “William Tell Overture” without thinking of the Lone Ranger.”

John Chesson

“The Irish gave the bagpipes to the Scots as a joke, but the Scots haven’t got the joke yet.”

Oliver Herford

“Most people use music as a couch; they want to be pillowed on it, relaxed and consoled for the stress of daily living.  But serious music was never meant to be soporific.”

Aaron Copland

“The pause is as important as the note.”

Truman Fisher

“Life is one grand, sweet song, so start the music.”

Ronald Reagan

“After silence, that which comes nearest to expressing the inexpressible is music.”

Aldous Huxley

“My sole inspiration is a telephone call from a producer.”

Cole Porter

“Don’t bother to look, I’ve composed all this already.”

Gustav Mahler, to Bruno Walter who had stopped to admire mountain scenery in rural Austria.

“I would rather play Chiquita Banana and have my swimming pool than play Bach and starve.”

Xavier Cugat

“Already too loud!” — Bruno Walter at his first rehearsal with an American orchestra, on seeing the players reaching for their instruments.

“I think popular music in this country is one of the few things in the twentieth century that have made giant strides in reverse.”

Bing Crosby

“Wagner has lovely moments but awful quarters of an hour.”

Gioacchino Rossini

“Music hath charms to soothe a savage breast, to soften rocks, or bend a knotted oak.”

William Congreve

“There is no doubt that the first requirement for a composer is to be dead.”

Arthur Honegger

“There’s nothing remarkable about it. All one has to do is hit the right keys at the right time and the instrument plays itself.”

Johann Sebastian Bach

“Great music is that which penetrates the ear with facility and quits the ear with difficulty. Magical music never quite leaves the memory.”

Lord Boothby

“Do you know that our soul is composed of harmony?”

Leonardo DaVinci

“You can’t go to the store and buy a good ear and rhythm.”

Les Paul

“If I can write the songs of the nations, I don’t care who writes the laws.”


“The man that hath no music in himself,

Nor is not moved with concord of sweet sounds,

Is fit for treasons, stratagems, and spoils.”

William Shakespeare


“The aim and final end of all music should be none other than the glory of God and the refreshment of the soul.”

Johann Sebastian Bach

“I occasionally play works by contemporary composers, and for two reasons. First, to discourage the composer from writing anymore, and secondly to remind myself how much I appreciate Beethoven.”

Jascha Heifitz

“Music imitates (represents) the passions or states of the soul, such as gentleness, anger, courage, temperance, and their opposites.”


“It takes a lot of devotion and work, or maybe I should say play, because if you love it, that’s what it amounts to I haven’t found any shortcuts, and I’ve been looking for a long time.”

Chet Atkins

“The trouble with real life is that there’s no danger music.”

Jim Carrey

 “Music is the art of thinking with sounds.”

Jules Combarieu

“Propel, propel, propel your craft softly down liquid solution. Ecstatically, ecstatically, ecstatically, ecstatically, Existence is simply illusion.”

Fred Rogers

“Music is God’s gift to man, the only art of Heaven given to earth, the only art of earth we take to Heaven.”

Walter Savage Landor

“Music is a discipline, and a mistress of order and good manners, she makes the people milder and gentler, more moral and more reasonable.”

Martin Luther

“God is its author, and not man; He laid the key-note of all harmonies; He planned all perfect combinations, and He made us so that we could hear and understand.” 
John Gardiner Calkins Brainard

“Just as certain selections of music 
will nourish the physical body and your emotional layer, 
so other musical works will bring greater health to your mind.”

Hal A. Lingerman

When told that a soloist would need six fingers to perform his concerto, Arnold Schoenberg replied, “I can wait.”

“I had my very first concert at the age of 16. I hadn’t heard a symphony orchestra before, and I was so deeply impressed I said I have to be a conductor.”

Kurt Masur

“I think music in itself is healing. 
It’s an explosive expression of humanity. 
It’s something we are all touched by. 
No matter what culture we’re from, 
everyone loves music.”

Billy Joel

“Music has a power of forming the character, and should therefore be introduced into the education of the young.”


“Wise men speak because they have something to say; fools because they have to say something.”


“How wonderful opera would be if there were no singers.”

Gioacchino Antonio Rossini

“Don’t cry because it’s over, smile because it happened.”

Dr. Seuss

“Outside of a dog, a book is man’s best friend. Inside of a dog it’s too dark to read.”

Groucho Marx

“Use the talents you possess, for the woods would be very silent if no birds sang except the best.”

Henry Van Dyke

“The whole problem can be stated quite simply by asking, “Is there a meaning to music?” My answer would be, “Yes.” And “Can you state in so many words what the meaning is?” My answer to that would be, “No.””

Aaron Copland

“I have always kept one end in view, namely . . . to conduct a well-regulated church music to the honour of God.”

Johann Sebastian Bach

“Music is the fourth great material want, first food, then clothes, then shelter, then music.”

Christian Nevell Bovee

“Next to theology I give music the highest place of honor.’

Martin Luther

“The trouble with music appreciation in general is that people are taught to have too much respect for music; they should be taught to love it instead.”

Igor Stravinsky

“Conductors must give unmistakable and suggestive signals to the orchestra, not choreography to the audience.”

George Szell

“A symphony is a stage play with the parts written for instruments instead of for actors.”

Colin Wilson

“The high note is not the only thing.”

Placido Domingo

“Music causes us to think eloquently.”

Ralph Waldo Emerson

“If we were all determined to play the first violin we should never have an ensemble. Therefore, respect every musician in his proper place.”

Robert Schumann

 “Writing about music is like dancing about architecture.”

Martin Mull

“Courage is being scared to death, and saddling up anyway.”

John Wayne

Don’t practice until you get it right, practice until you can’t get it wrong

“Music to me is like breathing – I don’t get tired of breathing, I don’t get tired of music.”

Ray Charles

“Next to the Word of God, the noble art of music is the greatest treasure in the world.”

Martin Luther

 “Where words fail, music speaks.”

Hans Christian Andersen

“Music is an outburst of the soul.”

Frederick Delius

“Music is an agreeable harmony for the honor of God and the permissible delights of the soul.”

Johann Sebastian Bach

“If the King loves music, it is well with the land.”


“Musical compositions, it should be remembered, do not inhabit certain countries, certain museums, like paintings and statues. The Mozart Quintet is not shut up in Salzburg: I have it in my pocket.”

Henri Rabaudcoevb

“Music is the universal language of mankind.”

Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

“All music is folk music. I ain’t never heard a horse sing a song.”

Louis Armstrong

“Music should strike fire from the heart of man, and bring tears from the eyes of woman.”

Ludwig van Beethoven

 The man who invented autocorrect has passed away. His funfare is next monkey.

All the days of the afflicted are bad, But a cheerful heart has a continual feast. Proverbs 15:15

“It is incontestable that music induces in us a sense of the infinite and the contemplation of the invisible.”

Victor de LaPrade

“If anyone has conducted a Beethoven performance, and then doesn’t have to go to an osteopath, then there’s something wrong.”

Simon Rattle

 “If I were not a physicist, I would probably be a musician. I often think in music. I live my daydreams in music. I see my life in terms of music.”

Albert Einstein

 If you are not content with where you are and what you have,

you will never be content with where you go and what you get.