Thursday, October 19, 2006

Music to my ears

Someone recently asked my why I listen to "angry" music.


I do? Hmmm. Well...maybe. Yes that I think about it...I suppose I do. (Honestly, this was news to me)

Why though? Don't bitter, unhappy people listen to dark, angry music? I have no idea. If I had to guess though, I would expect that people listen to music that most closely associates with their mood most of the time. For me though, it seems to be the opposite. I'm rarely angry or sad, but somehow, I listen to that stuff almost exclusively.

One reason is that I like music with meaning and sincerity. As someone who has written a few songs, I'll share something that I learned: it is really, really hard to write genuine, non-cheesy songs about being happy.

No one ever feels the need to express their happiness by sitting down and writing a song. They're outside, they're sharing that moment with someone else, and further building on that happiness.

Sad people sit alone in the candlelight, writing tortuous poetry, agonizing over the perfect way to describe their broken heart, unrequited love, pain and suffering.

When I'm full of energy, I crank up the mood music and scream along with the uptempo songs. My mood stands outgainst the lyrics I'm wailing and makes me unique - I am happy. When I'm sad, I listen to the slower stuff. Rather than using it as an excuse to wallow in misery, I think of it as validation - I am not alone.

No matter how sincere and focused the songwriter, if you take a step back, they only illuminate that we all have the same problems. Stress, self-image, money, and most of all: Love. There is something comforting about that shared moment of loneliness, even if it's just you and the sound in your headphones.

In that moment, it's not just sound. It's comfort. It's understanding. It's validation. Somehow, it's happiness.

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