Re: Music in the Dojo?
Ki Society has a seventeen-movement drill, Oneness Taiso, which can be done to music. It works better that way, because you don't have to count and can concentrate on flow and form. But the approved music for this purpose is...is...well, to this Western ear it's "The Smurf Christmas as the Mall," to be honest. Our teacher tends to close the door when she plays it, because it's just embarrassing.
I recently discovered that Oneness Taiso works equally well to the tune of "The Banana Boat Song" and I'm waiting for the proper moment to spring this discovery on my seniors. In the meantime, that's how I do it when I'm by myself. (It has the additional advantage that it can be sung, which the approved music can't.)
I don't feel that it's necessary to be serious every moment in the dojo. Laughter is one of the things that attracted me to aikido. Quite a few of the very senior people bring humor to the mat too--at Winter Camp Shibata sensei and Yamada sensei made us laugh many times, and I would never consider either of them less than serious about their aikido.