Chatting about what music means to us is a popular topic at various times in the group. We did things a bit differently today and took the time to listen to three different songs. We used the time to be quiet and properly listen to the music, the lyrics, the tune, the harmony and the instruments and see what we thought the artist was trying to say, what it meant for us, what emotions were evoked in us and how the whole experience of the song as a whole affected us.
The first song that we listened to was ‘Beautiful’ by Christina Aguilera. Interestingly everyone in the group had a very similar reaction to this song in that it was felt to be insincere and a bit of a marketing gimmick, and though the words were a nice sentiment it wasn’t deep enough or genuine enough to be particularly meaningful for people.
The next song we listened to was ‘In My Life’ by The Beatles. This received a more mixed reaction. Because it’s The Beatles, and the massive affection held for them some felt they would like it anyway by association, though admitted that this was maybe the first time they had properly listened to the words. So for some there would good memories and it felt nice to listen, for others it spoke of loss and this incurred some pain or memories of their own loss, and still for others it felt that all the past was being disregarded and put away for the love of a current one which was perhaps unrealistic.
The final song was ‘The best is yet to come’ by Mike and the Mechanics. This song was unanimously disliked for being clichéd and shallow! And thought that the singer was saying that potentially ‘her’ happiness depended on him. Admittedly it was upbeat with a driving beat. One person felt that it was optimistic and saying Yes! to life.
The group found this to be a really interesting exercise to really listen collectively to the music and the ways in which each person interpreted the pieces of music in different ways. Below are the pieces of music.