MJ Watson (who has elected to make her blog private now) has tagged me to describe seven of my favorite songs, specifically my feelings and thoughts while listening to them, and why I like them.
So without further ado...cue the depressing lyrics!
1. My Shot (Clean Edit), Hamilton Original Broadway Cast
This one pumps me up whenever I'm feeling purposeless or lazy or just tired. It's also perfect because the runtime is exactly how long it takes for me to drive from my house to my church. #noregretsincludingcheesyhashtags
It talks about fighting against seemingly impossible odds:
"Rise up. When you're living on your knees, you rise up."
It then ends with Hamilton's decision to not view life as an experience, but as an opportunity:
"Ask anybody why we livin' fast and we laugh, reach for a flask--
We have to make this moment last, that's plenty...
Scratch that. This is not a moment, it's a movement
Where all the hungriest brothers with something to prove went"
The fast raps are super satisfying to sing along with now that I have the lyrics memorized. And the song reminds me of the real-life Alexander Hamilton, whom I feel like I know personally since reading the enormous biography that the play is based on. Seriously, guys, I got really emotional at the part when he died.
2. Drown, Tyler Joseph
You knew I couldn't go long without mentioning twenty one pilots in any form. This is from Tyler's album No Phun Intended, which he made when he was 17. The recordings aren't that great, but considering his age and his limited equipment it's an impressive album. It can only be found on YouTube, by the way.
But now for this song in particular. In dark moments it makes me feel less alone, and the lyrics are addressed to God so they help me to pray when I can't form the words myself.
"I wanna be a lot of things, so much pent up inside of me
I wanna be stronger, too long I've sat here undecidedly...
...And I'm back in front of you, Lord, with blood on the floor
Is the blood mine or yours? Don't wanna do this anymore,
Back and forth between being me and who you call me to be..."
3. Where the Light Shines Through, Switchfoot
Somehow Switchfoot reaches me more than a lot of other Christian bands. They have the same Christian genre formula that I usually dislike--talk about a problem in verse 1 and then resolve the problem by the chorus--but the way they do it feels more genuine than the other artists I've heard try this.
Unlike Tyler's music, which is usually just about the negative aspects of life, this song starts with the negative and goes to the positive--yes, there is a wound, but that's "where the light shines through."
"Yeah the only tattoos I have are scars,
I've got your name written on my heart"
4. Everything, Passenger
Passenger's music feels like running through a faraway forest and then jumping in the ocean on a deserted beach. For some reason it feels nostalgic to me, even though I only discovered his stuff recently.
This song is no exception, and the lyrics are a poignant and oft-needed reminder that it's impossible to be fulfilled in life without loving without counting the cost, and letting your heart be broken.
"They'll take your spark, they'll take everything
But nothing's ever something until you lose everything"
5. You Will Be Found, Dear Evan Hansen Original Broadway Cast
I love listening to Ben Platt's voice, and the gorgeous harmonies when the entire casts comes in on the chorus. It's pretty self-explanatory that this is another song for dark moments.
"Maybe there's a reason to believe you'll be ok."
6. Sailboat, Ben Rector
Another song for getting frustration out. Ben Rector's voice is beautiful too (what is it with Bens in the music industry??) and the lyrics are about loneliness and loss of direction, but they're also infused with hope and a feeling of freedom.
"I feel just like a sailboat
I don't know where I'm headed
But you can't make the wind blow
From a sailboat"
7. Little Wonders, Rob Thomas
This is the song that plays through the ending montage of Meet the Robinsons, which for many reasons is my favorite Disney movie and has influenced me deeply. Rob Thomas' raw vocals, mixed with the thoughtful lyrics, are the perfect combination and they encourage me to keep moving and enjoy little moments in life.
"Let it go, let it roll right off your shoulders
Don't you know, the hardest part is over...
...All falls away, but these small hours,
These little wonders
I'll be lazy and tag whoever feels like taking this tag. There are no rules--put in as many Jack Sparrow gifs as you want for all I care...
...but if you don't feel like doing the whole thing, what is your #1 favorite song, and why?