Why music means so much to us.

Inspired by one of The Indie Sight’s wonderful writers, Jenny Darmody, I decided to, once again, steer away from the structured review that I had originally intended to be the fulcrum of this blog and post more of a commentary piece.

Jenny’s blog is one that I visit quite often because I simply enjoy the way in which she writes, and because I admire how she can jump from one topic to the other. I, on the other hand, would completely loose the run of myself if I was to write about a variety of topics, so even for this random blog post, I will stick with writing about music. For those of you who don’t personally know me, my biggest passion is music, and my greatest hobby is writing, so it must be understandable that I am naturally compelled to write about music. The particular post of Jenny’s that inspired me to write this blog, was one in which she discussed the most meaningful songs to her. It got me thinking about why music is such an important part of all our lives; even those who may not be considered as music aficionados place some importance in music whether they are aware of it or not.

I once read a book about the psychology of music and, despite the high-brow language, it really hit the nail on the head. The gist of the book concluded that we fall in love with music as humans, because we struggle to express in our own words, how we truly feel. As cheesey as it may sound, I agree with this because I understand the comfort we can get from hearing others sing/talk about something that affects us so deeply, it’s almost a relief to know that there are others who are fed up with their lives the way they are, or sick of being single, or PROUD to be single etc. I for one, can associate music with the realisation of many emotions I have encountered over the last ten years. It has been the case where I have been left wondering why I feel so down, or indeed, why I feel so happy, and then when I hear a song, and it may have been a first time listen, or hundredth time listen,  it hit home- that’s how I feel.

We all have those songs that pull at our heart strings, that remind us of a time in which we suffered or of a loved one, or of a joyous time that we wish we could have held on to for a little longer. I am reluctant to express publicly why certain songs affect me, and why I would directly associate myself with them, because sometimes, and call me cynical if you so wish, it is dangerous to let the world spot your vulnerabilities. However I have no trouble in saying that I am a sensitive person and I do, for want of a better term, bond with certain songs, because it feels as though I could have written them if I could truly expel my emotions. I am sure that this is something that occurs to many people, particularly music fans, as a recent study I read about revealed that us true music fans are more emotionally sensitive and empathetic than those who simply listen to the music to pass the time, or fill the silence. Think of a time when you have sat in your car listening to the radio, or flicked through the songs on your MP3 player and it was like a bright light spanning on front of you, when someone you don’t even know, is saying exactly how you feel through the speakers of an inanimate object. It truly is a surreal and mind opening experience.

My most recent mind-opening song related experience came on Monday morning as I got ready for work. I had my ipod in Steve- my iPig, blasting out some of my favourite songs when one I hadn’t heard in a while came on. Frank Turners’ powerful anthem Photosynthsis seemed to have grabbed me by the shoulders, shook me and screamed at me not to give up on my dream of being known for my writing and my potential contribution to the music industry from a promotions point of view. It took me by surprise to realise that the answer to my sudden despondency was in a song that I had sung with gusto in my bedroom before nights out, and now the ditty has more meaning to it than I had ever imagined it would. With the help of some sound advice from a loved one, and the power of Frank Turner’s song writing skills, I have an idea of what I need to do to get what I want with my life now. If that is not a testament to how moving, important and influential music can be, I don’t know what it is.

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