I have often heard people say, “listen to good music to forget your worries and stress” and that’s actually true. I enjoy listening to music while travelling or doing my regular chores and get immersed in the soul of songs. While old songs had the melody, soul and charm, new songs – barring a few of course – don’t seem to have the same soothing effect. Nevertheless, any music that your ears like is like heaven and different people have different taste given the plenty of choices we have today.
Old vs new
There were no digital and hi-fi technologies in the ’60s, 70’s and 80’s era in India. Even then, the songs and the singers both made an extraordinary contribution to the music industry. This period was about beautiful lyrics, soulful music and singers with a soothing and sweet voice.
With new techniques spearheading the music industry nowadays, everything from voice modulations, to beats and rap has gone the technology way. There are very few romantic and soft numbers and more of raps, a lot of them with meaningless lyrics and loud beats – but catchy and appealing – for this fast-moving and the instant world!
I don’t blame technology for this! If used in a nicer way, a lot of good songs can be made using the new improved instruments and voice and modulation techniques.
Remixes were good to some extent, but now they are reaching a saturation point where it has become repetition and most of the remixes are just a worse version of the original song! This also makes me question the creativity of today’s artists and I wonder – can’t they produce good music? Don’t they have new lyrics to write? What happened to the thinking capacity? What happened to the imagination?
In the golden era, there were songs about love that we still love to listen to. A calm early morning tea, a recliner and such deep and expressive songs to hear – can you ask for more?
Songs that are slow and have comforting music and voices are still popular – that’s why the old songs still appeal to everyone. Even the young generations agree that listening to old songs helps them relax their mind.
What music can do for you
Let me give an example. In my college hostel, there used to be a lot of noise around. Particularly during exams, there would be different sounds from all directions. Some students would be doing group studies, some reading aloud, some discussing a subject and some just having fun without worrying about anyone else. All in all, it was the time when people like me who liked to study alone had to struggle to find a space to learn and practise.
Most of us would have Walkman with headphones to play songs of our choice. I used to spend a lot of time making customized cassettes with all my favourite songs in one cassette rather than buying a whole movie cassette for one or two popular songs. We could store at least 10 songs in a 60-minute cassette which was amazing. So, yes, this Walkman was my charioteer. It was much better to hear songs of my choice than the chitter-chatter of outside that was disturbing.
Another challenge was to avoid funny glares of people while walking around with books in hand. At that time, the taunting like – “oh, you are going to be class first”, “don’t study too much, your brain will burst” and similar ones used to affect my spirits as it sometimes came from friends and classmates. I never wanted myself to be called the “bookworm” or “studious one”! (Though now I wonder there was no big deal in it!)Anyway, this problem also was solved by the Walkman – just record a few chapters in your own voice and play them again and again – shhhh… no one would know what you are listening to!
Some clever ones would ask and want to hear just to check, in which case I would just turn over the cassette and play a song! This trick worked like charm for me until my friends figured it out by stealing my cassettes after which they loved the idea so much that they started doing the same! (good for me!)
This is when my love for soulful and powerful music, mainly guitar, flute and piano started. Put on songs that have soft music and a deep voice and you really feel some magic happening inside the brain. Constantly listening to similar kind of music also tunes your brain to listen to only one type of sound and escape yourself from the external noises or jibber jabber that you don’t want to listen to – even if that trash talk is coming from your own mind!
From the ’60s till today there are many songs that are very creative, soulful and soothing. These send some magical waves that stop the brain from thinking and says – “Hey, you got to listen to this!”. The strikingly beautiful voice of a singer, or the relaxing tone of strings and keyboard can instantly deviate you from all negative thoughts and take you to another world.
Cling on to the music that you like
Not just Bollywood, music is just everywhere. Listen to instrumental music by different artists and foundations and you will be amazed at some of the most unique percussions and combinations. The sound of Om, sound of birds or even symmetrical beats can prove to relax you and calm you down. For different people, different kind of music works. Some like soft music, for some fast and loud rock music, can be relaxing. And for some people listen to good music to forget worries and stress.
The kind of music one listens to tells a lot about their personality – believe me, it’s true! That’s why everyone has a different taste. Songs that you may like might not be particularly my type and vice versa! Whatever it is, the bottom line is that everyone loves music in their own different ways.
Well, if you don’t know what kind of music you like, here can be some starters for you.
- Listen to different types of music (rock, classical, jazz, country, Latin, metal etc..). After that decide which one you like best.
- Make your personal favourites and create playlists based on this.
- There are many apps that make this work easier for you by giving suggestions. And by using them you can listen to and also based on your mood.
Well, if you are in a happy mood, choose to go for fast beats with which you can shake a leg and snap your fingers. If you are feeling sleepy, go for soft music that can help you with a power nap. Or if you want to hear some really emotional stuff, pick up some romantic music with nice violin or piano touch. Or if you are not in a good mood –listen to your favourite songs. Songs that make you cry or laugh, songs that bring back good memories and distract you from your present moment – because that’s what music should do to your heart…!
Find Meaning of Life.