I am tone-deaf. A total tin-ear.
The sound I make when I try to sing is comparative to the guttural yowl of a catfight.
I have two left feet, and I have no rhythm.
As a child, my music teacher told my parents to stop wasting their money.
In short, I do not possess any natural musical ability. Not one iota.
But I love music!
24 hours a day & 7 days a week
I listen to music from the moment I get up, to the moment I go to bed. And then I listen to sleep sounds throughout the night.
I play music 24 hours a day. And even though I am musically inept, music is part of my daily life.
I bluetooth music to my wireless speaker or earbuds, and I listen to music while I’m cooking, cleaning, showering, driving, and even working. I wear one earbud, leaving one ear free to hear peripheral sounds like the telephone or conversation, but I am always listening to music!
The accessibility and ease of streaming music and listening to whatever artist you want, whenever you want and having millions of songs instantly at your fingertips is a gamechanger.
And, the convenience of no longer buying CDs, or for those of us that can remember, cassettes or vinyl records or LPs.
Oh, and the frustration of listening to the Top 40 on the Friday night radio, with your cassette player poised ready to go so you could tape the latest hits, and then missing the first 20 seconds because you didn’t press play and record at the same time, doh.
Nowadays I listen to Apple Music, and Apple Music has over 90 million songs that you can stream. And of those 90 million songs, I have 10,605 on my devices.
I have a playlist for every occasion.
And a playlist for every mood.
I was Country when Country wasn’t cool
My taste in music is varied and I listen to a variety of genres.
But my go-to has always been country music. I love country music. I listen to it all, from classic golden oldies to contemporary, honky-tonk to country rock.
Country music used to be stereotyped as horse-riding cowboy or redneck hillbilly music, but then in the 90s country music exploded onto the music charts and the rest of the world caught up and became enthralled with the sound of steel guitars and the country twang of Alan Jackson and Garth Brookes.
And somehow country got mixed up with pop, and the likes of Luke Bryan and Taylor Swift burst onto the airways and ripped up the charts.
But I am not pigeonholed to only country music.
I can just as easily listen to 80s classics as I can Eminem or Robbie Williams, Pink or Lady Gaga, Kid Rock or AC/DC.
I have no one specific genre of music, and the music I listen to is dependent on how I feel, and my mood!
“When you’re happy, you enjoy the music.
But when you’re sad, you understand the lyrics”. – Frank Ocean
Music – Food for the Soul
Music is more than a series of sounds and vibrations; it is beneficial for your mind, body, and soul.
It has the power to transport you to another time or place.
Music is universal. It connects us on a social, and emotional level. It unites people regardless of race or religion.
Music is deeply ingrained in both our conscious and subconscious minds which is why hearing a familiar song can reawaken the brain and the memories associated with that past event and the feelings that it evokes.
A favourite song can stimulate brain activity which can lead to a sense of euphoria and nostalgia.
Music can be energising, uplifting, and fun. Or it can be sombre, melancholy, and sad.
Music influences mood.
It evokes emotion.
Which is the reason music is used so extensively in our everyday lives.
Movie producers use music at precise moments to incite feelings of happiness, fear, suspense, or excitement.
Upbeat hip-hop and hard rock music are used in gyms and bars to motivate, energise, and promote physical endurance.
Whereas the mellow tones of jazz and classical music are used to relax, soothe, and calm in quieter environments.
There have been many studies done on music and its impact on our minds. But as it turns out, it also has an impact on our overall health and wellbeing.
MUSIC GIVES A SOUL TO THE UNIVERSE, WINGS TO THE MIND, FLIGHT TO THE IMAGINATION AND LIFE TO EVERYTHING.” – Plato
Fight or Flight vs Happy Hormones
Listening to calming music relaxes the mind and body, and reduces levels of cortisol and adrenaline, the fight or flight hormones that are produced when you are stressed and anxious.
The production of these hormones increases your heart rate and raises your blood pressure and blood sugars to prepare your body for physical confrontation.
Whereas, listening to upbeat and happy music lifts your spirits and improves your mood, and releases the feel-good hormones, dopamine, and serotonin.
These happy hormones increase positive moods and emotions and are associated with feelings of calm, focus and motivation.
The benefits of music
Music can calm and distract you from a stressful situation, it can clear your mind and relax your body, and help you refocus with a fresh perspective.
Music can motivate and energise you. It can boost your creativity and help you achieve a flow state and improve your concentration and focus.
Music can improve your sleep quality. Listening to lyric-free, calming sleep music before going to bed prepares your body for sleep by slowing your breathing, lowering your heart rate, lowering your blood pressure, quietening the nervous system, and reducing stress and tension.
Sing away your blues
So, the takeaway is to turn up the volume, and toe-tap along to your favourite tunes, and even if you are a musical tragic like myself, continue to sing and dance to your heart’s content, as the benefit of integrating music into your daily life has been strongly indicated to improve your body, mind, and soul.
Sometimes music is the only medicine the heart and soul need.