I realize that my dumb phone and I are already obsolete in this current age of the ringtone. But still, I live for the wistful little song my phone sings every time I get a text message. Starting on the seventh and ending on the third, it sings of hope and unrealized potential. The tonic is nowhere in sight. Anything is possible. Does my friend have an extra ticket to Pink? Is my lover is coming back to me?
Who are you, you who wrote this song? Did you make a living writing phone notifications? Did you go to music school and study composition? Were phone songs above or below commercial jingles in the sell-out-your-art hierarchy? And if it was your phone song, it must have been one of the most famous (if not one of the shortest) tunes in the world. International performances! Instant recognition! If brevity is the soul of wit, well damn!! what would be the pay breakdown if you were paid by the note? And were you considered an artist in residence? Or a member of the permanent staff? Were you ever accused of being derivative or post post-modern or too tonal? Did the reviewers compare you to other composers, dead or alive? And did your work lead to other commissions? What about royalties? Oh dear phone composer, why did you ever have to stop writing your little phone songs? I mourn the passing of an era. My battered antique phone will only enchant me for a little while longer. And as for you, my composer friend — I sure hope you didn’t quit your day job.