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The Musical Odyssey of West Munroe: Finding His Voice Through Notes and Chords

Written by Alexandria Anglade

Music is a universal language that transcends borders, cultures, and backgrounds. For musician West Munroe, this language has been his lifelong companion, allowing him to express himself in ways words alone could never achieve. From his early exposure to music in the church to the transformative influence of artists like Robert Glasper, West's musical journey is a testament to the power of passion and perseverance.

A Childhood Surrounded by Music

West Munroe's musical journey didn't start with a single defining moment but rather with the rhythmic backdrop of his upbringing. Growing up with two older brothers who played the drums and guitar, West was immersed in a world of melodies and harmonies from a very young age. Playing in church alongside his siblings, he found himself surrounded by the comforting embrace of music.

Discovering the Guitar

While West always dabbled with the guitar during his childhood, it wasn't until he turned 12 that he began to take it seriously. His older brother Cody, who played the drums, played a pivotal role in sparking his curiosity for music. Cody's introduction to new sounds through his computer opened up a world of possibilities for West, inspiring him to explore music in ways he had never imagined.

Lessons and Guitar Enthusiasm

Initially, West embarked on piano lessons, but practicing proved to be a challenge. It was his older brother who stepped in to teach him the guitar, setting him on a path he would later embrace wholeheartedly. West began attending guitar lessons, igniting his passion for the instrument.

A Transformative Loss

Life's twists and turns often have a profound impact on our passions and pursuits. For West, a significant turning point came with the tragic loss of his younger brother in 2009. In the wake of this heartbreaking event, the guitar took on a new significance. It became not just an instrument but a medium through which he could communicate and express emotions that words couldn't convey.

The Early Musical Palette

West's journey with music started with the acoustic guitar, borrowing from his older brother's collection. This humble beginning laid the foundation for his musical exploration.

Robert Glasper: A Game-Changer

In 2012, West's musical world was forever changed by Robert Glasper's album "Black Radio." The fact that Glasper hailed from West's hometown of Houston made the connection even more meaningful. The sonic landscape of "Black Radio" left an indelible mark, leading West to discover the performing arts high school that would later become his musical haven.

A Chance Encounter with Musical Excellence

That year, Robert Glasper was performing in Houston at the Red Cat Jazz Cafe. West, accompanied by his brother and a friend, eagerly awaited the show. Despite initial obstacles, a fateful encounter with Glasper himself secured their entry. Witnessing the virtuosic talents of Robert Glasper, Casey Benjamin, Chris Dave, and Derrick Hodge on stage was a life-altering experience for West. It was a moment when musical excellence and artistry converged, leaving an indelible imprint on his musical aspirations.

Family Support: A Pillar of Success

West is quick to acknowledge the unwavering support of his family, especially his parents. They recognized his passion for music and ensured he had the opportunity to receive lessons and pursue his dreams. His father's dedication to driving him to school and his uncle's studio for practice exemplify the family's commitment to nurturing West's musical talents.

The High School That Shaped His Journey

West's journey expanded further when he entered high school, where he found himself surrounded by a diverse and talented group of musicians. Despite not being the best at his school, the experience of playing alongside high-level musicians played a crucial role in shaping him into the musician he is today.

The Ongoing Musical Odyssey

West Munroe's journey in music is an ever-evolving exploration. He views music as a language he started learning in childhood and is continuously becoming more fluent in. His path has been filled with detours and discoveries, revealing the infinite depth and breadth of music. He emphasizes the importance of embracing one's unique relationship with music and honing it, recognizing that every musician's journey is distinct and incomparable.

In the symphony of West Munroe's life, each note and chord tells a story of passion, perseverance, and the transformative power of music. His journey serves as an inspiration to all aspiring musicians, reminding us that the true beauty of music lies in the personal connection and expression it offers to those who embrace it.

Instagram: @westmunroe

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