Music as Sublime: Tedeschi Trucks Band

Last week, I was half asleep in an environmental science lecture when my professor suddenly projected a Tedeschi Trucks Band video clip onto a large screen in the room. It was completely out of the blue, but it certainly got my attention. At first, I couldn’t tell what the 2011 Atlanta performance had to do with that day’s lecture on the wilderness, though as a lifelong Susan Tedeschi fan and a lucky witness of the Tedeschi Trucks Band performance at the 2011 Doheny Blues Festival, I was overjoyed to see the video pop up in such an unexpected place. Later on, the professor connected the dots: the class was to explore the idea of the wilderness as sublime, and for him there were few things more inspiring than listening to “Bound for Glory” and watching the sheer intensity of the band’s live performance.

That day exists for me as yet another example of the incredible power of music. When I walked into that lecture, I had no idea that I would be hearing a story of how music had overwhelmed someone to the point of emotional and spiritual transformation. The professor explained to my class how the music delivered for him a strong sense of empowerment through its beauty and depth; not just that day, but every time he watched the clip. I too have felt that transformation while listening to music – maybe not with the same performance the professor loved so much, but there are certainly songs that send chills down my spine and transport me to a better place.

Below is the Youtube video for the live Atlanta performance. You can also find Susan Tedeschi’s solo work and music by the Tedeschi Trucks Band on iTunes.