ABSTRACT

Walking down the street of a ‘hip’ area at East Village in Manhattan at the time of fi eldwork research, I heard electronic dance music being played in some ‘trendy’ bars, restaurants and music venues. These electronica sounds accompanied myself as I was walking down the street, along with other types of music spreading from diff erent restaurants and bars, and I felt being shielded by a wall of sound. As I was nearing Times Square, I found myself surrounded by hundreds of strangers who were talking out loud on mobile phones and with one another. Noises also included sirens from the city streets, vehicle horns and chart hits played in diff erent stores. A quiet space, be it physical or mental, became a rarity or luxury in my city existence in New York. Can city dwellers fi nd a secret place in music where they can be quiet with themselves and a Higher Being amidst all these noises?