Music That Heals
Anybody who knows personally me, knows I obsess over 90s love songs. RnB throwbacks make up a significant part of almost every playlist I have curated. The artist hits a note and BOOM I feel it in my soul. It’s like every lyric reflects upon my own personal experience… in harmony! Some of these legendary tunes are critical to some of my most impactful memories. My high school’s graduating class sang End of the Road by Boyz II Men on the stage after we marched across the for our hard earned diplomas. I was on the edge of my theater seat when the men of The Best Man Holiday did the Can You Stand The Rain by New Edition scene. Everybody in there was HOLLERING! (Not me, of course! I hate when people interrupt the movie!)
I would love to add a special memory of singing a popular RnB song with my friends on the playground in elementary school that includes the lyrics, “I got shot by the FBI”. However, I am an active #MUTERKELLY supporter. He is cancelled until— well, that is a post for another day!
The point I’m getting at here is that music affects our brain. It can heighten or even tame our emotions. These songs connect us to our most dearest and most dreadful memories. Some songs make us instantly warm on the inside giving us no choice but to lift the corners of our mouths. Other songs are just a bit too painful to listen to, so we can’t get to that skip button fast enough.
I remember being laid across my couch devastated after a break-up with tears gushing through my eyelids as if they were dams that couldn’t take the pressure anymore. I was listening to some of my favorite music in my playlist titled “Slow”. It has all my favorite slow jams (mostly from the 90s) and already made it clear how I feel about these. These songs could not keep my mind off of my ex-boyfriend and the heartbreaking memories.
The healing process was being interrupted.
Yes, I do believe a humongous part of healing is letting out every emotion to keep them from being bottled in. However, I was swimming deeper and deeper into this sea of memories. I was definitely over-doing it! So I switched my music selection over to my girl Jhene Aiko. This lyrical goddess switched up my whole mood. She had me remembering my self-worth. She’s my go-to girl for any time my mood is sinking whether it’s romance related or not.
I have a few playlists for different moods that I keep on deck. I have one for break-ups that includes songs like Me, Myself, and I by Beyoncé and Dueces by Chris Brown (and the remix of course). I have a playlist for vibing out when I want to chill with Corrine Bailey Rae, Goapele, and Bob Marley. I have incorporated music into my healing process, and when I listen to certain songs, it becomes therapeutic. I know we all use music for certain moods intentionally, but I encourage you (if you haven’t already) to create playlists for specific moods.
This is my Music that Heals playlist; I must admit, it is the BOMB.COM!
- W.A.Y.S. by Jhene Aiko
- Brand New by Pharrell and Justin Timberlake
- Three Little Birds by Bob Marley & The Wailers
- Bounce Back by Big Sean
- Cruisin’ by D’Angelo
- Put Your Records On by Corinne Bailey Rae
- Feeling Myself by Nicki Minaj with Beyoncé
- Blessings by Chance the Rapper with Ty Dolla $ign
- Promises by Jhene Aiko
- Keep Ya Head Up by Tupac
- Blessings by Big Sean with Drake and Kanye West
- Back Together by Jill Scott
- thank u, next by Ariana Grande
- Nothing is Promised by Mike WiLL Made-It and Rihanna
- It Was A Good Day by Ice Cube
- FRIENDS by J. Cole with kiLL edward
- Pursuit of Happiness by Kid Cudi
- No More Rain (In This Cloud) by Angie Stone
- Beautiful by Christina Aguilera
- There’s Hope by India Arie
For those who cannot tell, I have created my list with Spotify. You can make an account and listen to music for FREE, as long as you don’t mind not being able to have complete control over what songs you listen to, advertisements and limited skips. If you have problem with any of those, you can pay for a premium account with better features. My favorite part about Spotify is the playlists. I discover so much music by hearing music they suggest based off of the songs I listen too. Feel free to search my name (ambmjenk) and follow my playlist if this fits your vibe.
If you decide to create a similar playlist, I hope this list inspires your own song choices. Down below, comment any song ideas that come to mind. I might even add them to my playlist. I would like way more than twenty songs. I’m sure I’m already missing some major healing music. (While writing this, I just realized I have no Lauryn Hill. What in the world! I am probably going to add Doo-Wap (That Thing) once I finish this post.) Whatever you do, please don’t judge my music preference off of what I have shared. I am willing to listen to anything! As you can see this playlist ranges from Christina Aguilera and India Arie to Tupac and Ice Cube.
The songs I have chosen help me gain control when I feel anxiety approaching, or even when it is beyond approached. Next thing you know, I am breathing steady to the beat of the melody. There songs have calmed the storm of calamity brought on by my fervent anger. Suddenly, my hands stop shaking, and I am no longer visualizing them smacking across somebody’s face. Whether it’s the lyrics, the beat, the music video, or the back story, something in this music is helping me stay focused on gratitude, love, compassion, and/or positivity. We are only human, so it is our fate to have negative experiences. It is only up to us to control our reactions. Happy healing sisters and brothers!
Love and Light,