You must listen without always wanting to compare with the musical basis you already have. You must imagine that you inherited from your ancestors different compartments in the musical part of your brain, just as you inherited any other physical or intellectual qualities. Now when you hear a piece from the pre-classic, classic, or romantic periods, the sound falls without any trouble and agreeably into the already prepared compartments. But when music for which you have no prepared compartment strikes your ear, what happens? Either the music remains outside of you or you force it with all your might into one of those compartments, although it does not fit. The compartment is either too long or too short, either too narrow or too wide, and that hurts you and you blame the music. But in reality you are to blame, because you force it into a compartment into which it does not fit, instead of calmly, passively, quietly, and without opposition, helping the music to hold a new compartment for itself.

You must listen without always wanting to compare
Ross Zurowski