Or should we say the undue influence of music. You see music is powerful, unfair, even dangerous (that's right I said dangerous).
Honestly, of all things man made, I would say music is the most powerful - don't believe me. Nations and tribes and Soccer teams all have war chants. Protesters sing for unity as they are getting hassled by the man. Think about the sound of thousands of voices singing as one to the national anthem - any national anthem. Certainly we can't all talk as one, it just becomes noise. We can't all act as one, because even if we have the same ideas of where to go, we have a thousand different plans on how to get there. But if you want to get people together, get them singing. No matter how many or how diverse we can all blend our voices and sing as one. And how incredibly moving it is when we do. Who didn't shed a few tears during the Olympics at our own Star Spangled Banner? Or even Oh Canada?
So that's the power of music, what about this fairness issue you ask? Music is unfair because not everybody has it or can use it. I can't sing a lick - in fact the best way for me to get paid singing is to start up on my own and then wait for people to pay me to stop. Music is unfair because until someone creates a book with a sound track in it, we writers can't use it like movie makers can. How easily they cover up their mistakes with the orchestra. Bad dialogue, no one cares, a scene that makes no sense, no one cares, giant plot hole, no one cares - as long as that soundtrack is kicking.
Don't believe me, try watching Star Wars without the John Williams soundtrack, its just a bunch of people running around in weird costumes, Jaws is pretty much just a fish (most of the time its just a FIN) and Moulin Rouge - I don't know - a psychedelic acid trip of some kind? (wait, that's what it was WITH the music).
The point is we writers have to move the reader with mere words, but music somehow reaches in deeper and it does for the movie maker, more than any special effect can.
And yes Music is certainly dangerous. Not in a 1984, we have to stamp it out kind of way, but in a "One Bourbon, One Scotch and One beer," sounds like a good idea kind of way (Trust me it's not). In an "I can't drive 55!" is blasting through my car just when I realize there is a police officer pulling in behind me of way. And in a: "I did say I love you but Journey, Open Arms was playing and now that it's over I ah.. um... I gotta take it back. (This usually works out okay because she's thinking the same thing.)
And yet despite the power, fundamental lack of fairness and danger posed by unregulated and unadulterated music, I listen to sound tracks or classical when I'm writing; rock and roll, country or some rap when I'm driving (I know that's a weird combo); and Journey any time I'm trying to make a move. It's like COLT .45 - "works every time."
Seriously, I got nothing without it.