“I think music in itself is healing.
It’s an explosive expression of humanity.
It’s something we are all touched by.
Everyone loves music.”
~ Billy Joel ~
Music seems to be one of the few things that people can agree on as being a good thing. Not everyone has the same taste in music, but most people seem to tolerate other music tastes and styles far more readily than they would other things. How many wars are started over music? None that I can think of (feel free to correct me if you think of one). Yes a few riots may have started such as Mods and Rockers and Punks, but that was more over the culture around the music, not the music itself. This is one of the reasons I think music is very important, it brings people together. It gives people an outlet to express how they are feeling in a safe way.
Music has always been an important part of my life ever since I can remember. When I struggled at school to make friends music was something I understood and could be a part of. It has helped me to join in conversations and make friends. I have often struggled with my emotions, but music has helped me to understand myself somewhat better with the ideas and feelings expressed in songs.
These are some of my favourite songs which help me when struggling with my mental health or during difficult times.
Don’t Let Me Be Misunderstood- Nina Simone
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9ckv6-yhnIY For me it has to be the Nina version as she sings it with such emotion
I have always felt this song could be about me and my mood swings.
‘Ya know sometimes baby I’m so carefree
With a joy that’s hard to hide
And then sometimes it seems again that all I have is worry
And then you’re bound to see my other side
But I’m just a soul whose intentions are good
Oh Lord, please don’t let me be misunderstood’
When depressed I can have mood swings, where my mood can change very quickly. I can go from carefree and over the top happy to very down and worried about everything in the space of only a few minutes. I can get very angry at times and take my anger out on those around me including those I love. I do not mean to take it out on others and hope that they understand that I am just struggling with how I feel.
Ten Black Roses- The Rasmus
The song sums up depression well for me.
‘Life is like a boat in the bottle
Try to sail, you can’t with no air
Day by day it only gets harder
Try to scream but nobody cares
Through the glass you see the same faces
Hear the voices play fade a drum
When your life’s a boat in a bottle
You’re surrounded, drifting alone’
Depression can feel for me like being trapped behind glass, stuck in the same place day after day. Like I am getting nowhere fast sometimes. I try to talk to people about things, but it can feel like nobody cares with the same people just ignoring my cries for help. No matter how many people I have around me when depressed I feel very alone.
Don’t Let Me Get Me- Pink
This song sums up how I feel about myself sometimes when having a bad time.
Don’t let me get me
I’m my own worst enemy
Its bad when you annoy yourself
Don’t wanna be my friend no more
I wanna be somebody else
Sometimes I know I am not helping myself, but I can’t seem to stop sabotaging my own life. It can feel like my own mind is against me. I annoy myself with my OCD a lot.
Something Beautiful- Robbie Williams
When yet again single I find this song seems to understand how I feel.
If you can’t wake up in the morning
Cause your bed lies vacant at night
If you’re lost, hurt, tired or lonely
Can’t control it, try as you might
May you find that love that won’t leave you
May you find it by the end of the day
You won’t be lost, hurt, tired and lonely
Something beautiful will come your way
I have spent time feeling very low about being single and worrying I will never find that special someone. I am not so good at going to bed when alone as my OCD and anxiety can be worse then, so when I eventually do get to sleep, I can struggle to get up in the morning. Trying to find that love that won’t leave me has led me to spend many a wasted hour of my life.
How heartbreak felt for me when my first love left me and how it has felt somewhat since.
This new rhythm I pursue
Is just my getting over you
Telling myself that I need to
The days are better, the nights are still so lonely
Sometimes I think I’m the only cab on the road
This is about trying to distract yourself from the feelings of heartbreak and loneliness. I took on new volunteer jobs partly to give myself something to get up for each day and help me get over the past. It helped me with the day times to be busy and out of the house, but the nights were the hardest for me. It took me a long time to not feel sad or lonely at night about things. Sometimes you feel like you are the only person who ever felt that way, even though you know you are not really.
Not Like the Other Girls- The Rasmus
I have often felt very different to other girls, especially when I was at school and always dreamed of a man who would rescue me and take the pain away.
She’s fading away, away from this world.
Drifting like a feather, she’s not like the other girls.
She lives in the clouds and talks to the birds.
Hopeless little one she’s not like the other girls I know.
I have often retreated to my own world inside my head that I know is not real. I have been known to talk to birds, flowers, all kinds of non-human things as I can then have a conversation that goes the way I expect and not freak me out by going in a direction I never expected. (Although I have got better over the years at real conversation and did this more as a child and young adult.)
No more blame, I am destined to keep you sane.
The guy is going to look after her and make things better. He understands her issues. I always hoped a man would understand and try to help me. If only I could find the right man my problems would not be so bad. This is kind of my Gothic fantasy song about the perfect love for my messed up mind.
Somethings Coming- West Side Story
A song that gives me hope that things are going to change for the better soon. From one of my favourite musical films.
Could it be? Yes, it could
Something’s coming, something good if I can wait
Something’s coming, I don’t know what it is
But it is gonna be great
I just have to wait a bit longer and something good will happen to me. Patience has never been a strong point of mine, but it reminds me that waiting can be worth it.
He/ She Danced With Me- The Slipper and the Rose
Another fantasy song about love. As a child I adored this song, I mean what girl does not want to be a princess for at least a day?
Though this lovely night was only a fantasy
And I know tonight is all there will ever be
Dancing in his arms forever
My heart will never be free!
Dreaming of the night he danced with me
Most Perfect loves are only a dream or fantasy which this song sums up well. You never truly have a free heart once you have had that first love, even if you do fall in love again. This song and the film it comes from helps me to escape reality for a while and have my dream.
My favourite pop/ rock love song.
when the world gets sharp and tries to cut you down to size
and makes you feel like giving in
oh, I will stay, I will rain, I will wash the words and pain away
and I will chase away the way we push
the way we pull
I’ll open up and be your parachute
and I’ll never let you down
so open up and be my human angel
and we’ll only hit the ground
I like the sentiment of this song, how he will never let her down and always be there for her no matter what. It helps me feel like there is that someone out there for me who will wash away the pain and help me to feel beautiful again.
Gabriel’s Oboe- Marricone
This is one of the most beautiful tunes I have ever heard. There are no lyrics for it being a classical tune written as the main theme for the film The Mission. I had not seen the film the first few times I heard this tune, but it did not matter as the music is so moving by itself. I find the tune both sad and uplifting at the same time. The part with the choir sounds like ascending into another world, a fantasy world perhaps or maybe the heavens.