Having worked in music store for most of my twenties, I understand how music effects people. I remember when Swing the Mood by Jive bunny came out. We listened to it constantly in the store, because it sold like crazy. It also made people dance. It made people WANT to be there and shop. It actually put people in a good mood. Go ahead and listen while you read this. If you don't have to hear it all the time, it's not bad to listen to.
Elevator music is relaxing, because who wants to hear something loud and panic stricken when they are in an elevator??
Grocery stores seem to have picked up playing adult contemporary music, sometimes even radio stations, which is good- usually. Occasionally a song will come on with a frantic beat and it makes you move faster. You feel in a hurry, like, oh my god I need to hurry, shop faster, get the hell out of here. This is bad for most stores.
At the music store I worked at, usually the person working at the front, or the manager would have control over what would play in the store. I tried to find a decent mix of what the employees could stand, what they liked, and what would sell. During the holidays it was all holiday music, all the time. At the time it was awful because 8-10 straight hours of Christmas songs is obnoxious.
This morning in the car I listened to these songs, in this order:
Shake it Off- Taylor Swift
All about that Bass- Meghan Trainor
Roar- Katy Perry
I was flipping channels and I felt like I got pretty lucky because these are all great happy songs that are good for driving. It made me wonder, however, why I love happy music. In general, I listen to pop music although I love country, and rock, and classic rock and hip hop and a pretty decent range of music. However, I really like happy music. Upbeat. I think I'm a pretty upbeat person, at least I try to be. I try to positive and cheerful and I think the music I listen to reflects that. I know when I was a teenager, I was into the less cheerful stuff. Not necessarily the lyrics, but the music itself was less cheerful. I'd never accuse the Cure of being upbeat, or Depeche Mode- although there may have been some. I was depressed a lot then.
In the 90's, I listened to a lot of country music. Songs about dancing and drinking and being in love. I did a lot of that in the 90's. I did listen to some grunge. The first grunge song I heard was Man in the Box from Alice in Chains. The guy I was dating was absolutely enthralled with it, and while I admitted that I really liked the groove to it, grunge never really reached me the same way. I could and still do very much appreciate what is and isn't "good music" for whatever reason I think it's good. My late husband loved Pearl Jam and Soundgarden, we even played Chris Cornell's version of Ave Maria at his service. It's both ominous and beautiful.
Which brings me to something else. I put together a bunch of my late husbands favorite songs (or versions of them) for his memorial service. Towards the end, my sister asked me why I picked all these songs, I said they were his favorites. She said, "Really? They are all REALLY sad."
I hadn't really thought of that before.
So I wonder, what do my favorite songs say about me? Does the music I surround myself with influence my life, or does my life influence the music I listen to?
Well, I hope this last song at least puts you in a good mood. How can it not??