The Power Of Music

Just like a book can bring you to tears. Or bursts of laughter. Or even manage to convey the multitude of emotions raging inside of you, music has the ability to do the same thing in less than 4 minutes.

Last week, I was going through an old playlist of mine and came across the song ‘Mama’ by the Spice Girls. In less than three minutes, I had transferred the link over to my mother, not saying a word. Less than 10 minutes later, I get a text saying ‘great job. You made me cry at work!’ While the sarcasm was there, along with the joking, I knew that the song moved her. The lyrics say so much about everything, any moment, a daughter has with their mother.

‘She used to be my only enemy and never let me be free
Catching me in places that I knew I shouldn’t be
Every other day I crossed the line I didn’t mean to be so bad
I never thought you would become the friend I never had’

As I cleaned the boxes in my basement, I came across an old book of mine, that I would lend my friend in high school and we’d write whatever came to my mind. One passage literally made me cry because unbeknownst to me, at the age of 14, I was so angry at my mother for saying no, and yet, at 35 and with my own daughter, I know I would have done the same.

‘Back then I didn’t know why
Why you were misunderstood mama
So now I see through your eyes
All that you did was love’

It’s difficult to explain the relationship I now have with my mother. It’s far from being perfect – some days I could swear I knew better than she does, others, she knows better than I do. Some days we can’t stand to speak because we’re just too wrapped up in our own little worlds, and other days, I’m constantly looking at my phone to make sure I didn’t miss her calls. But either way, she is my mother, and this song was able to put pen to paper, words to hands, exactly how I feel about her.

‘Mama I love you
Mama I care
Mama I love you
Mama my friend
You’re my friend’

Another song that was introduced to me by a co-worker of mine a few weeks ago, is Halsey and Yungblud’s latest video, 11 minutes. Why does this song stick? Why does it pack a punch that even I never would have expected?

11 minutes isn’t long; however, this song doesn’t speak about the longest 11 minutes in someone’s life, but rather the length of time it takes to go through the 5 stages of grief. Remember that the 5 stages of grief include:

1- Denial and isolation

I think I missed you calling on the other line
I’m just thinking all these thoughts up in my mind
Talking love but I can’t even read the signs
I would sell my soul for a bit more time

2- Anger

Tell me what you need
I can make you more than what you are
Come and lay the roses on the floor
Every single Sunday, don’t get bored

3- Bargaining

I can give you more than what you are
Now I see you standing all alone
I never thought the world would turn to stone

4- Depression

And I’m down and depressed
All I want is your head on my chest
Touching feet in my bed

5- Acceptance

So call me stupid, call me sad
You’re the best I’ve ever had
You’re the worst I’ve ever had

The lyrics of this song isn’t as developed as you may have noticed with the Spice Girls’ song, however, the video itself speaks volume. It’s the powerful message of ‘what ifs’ – can you change the course of history? Can you scream, bargain and cry loud enough to have things different in the end? Do you believe you can live without that one single person in your life that makes you feel whole?

One thing you have to remember is that the beauty about music videos is that you can feel the music in ways you couldn’t have ever imagined – it gives context to the lyrics so that you can make a comparison to your own life. It’s the gateway to releasing your emotions when you just can’t talk. Or write about them. It brings out memories that you’ve long forgotten – songs from your childhood that you had completely forgotten. And especially, it’s a special way of dedicating to someone when you just can’t seem to attribute the right aspect to give them justice.

Next time you listen to music, just take a moment to feel. To understand the words. See how it affects you and try to remember the last time words were this powerful.

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