Music and Words – Some of My Favorite Songs

Hello all! It feels great to be back in the blogging world; it feels even better that I will be spending more time blogging about my first love: words. (For those new to my work, I spent a bit of time focusing on my fashion and beauty blog which has turned into a hobby.) I figured that I can show you who I am a little further in a more creative way.

I started writing stories when I was eight years old in my grandparents’ computer room during visits. This evolved into entering the poetry world at twelve, which led to my choice to pursue all forms of writing at college. Poetry has always been my favorite, though, and my love of music fits right in with it. Sometimes, people’s favorite songs tell you about who they are. So here are five of my favorite songs both lyrically and musically. (This was originally going to be ten songs, but I reduced it to five for brevity’s sake. Let me know in the comments if you want a part two!)

Let’s talk about your favorites. I love talking music!

1. Survivor – “Man Against the World”

Where to even begin with this song, since everything is so beautiful. First off, the imagery within the lyrics is so clear and concise. (Lyrics for reference are here.) Pair that with its relatable emotion as someone who struggles with my own mind every day, and it hits home in a special way. We all become the “man against the world” at points, and this song serves as an inspiration even in the darkest times. (Not to mention the musical arrangement and passion in Jimi Jamison’s voice only make it better.)

Now I’ve walked the path
From the dark to light
But they’ve yet to come to terms

I will not lie to you; I cried the first time I heard those three lines. Many songs hit home with me in the past, but they hit the nail on the head with twelve years’ worth of force.

2. Idina Menzel – “I Stand”

Reason number one that this is on a list of favorites: it’s Idina Menzel. I fell in love with Idina’s voice from the moment I heard the “Wicked” soundtrack at thirteen years old. But, even in her own solo work, her songwriting and vocal execution are so precise. The words themselves are so empowering. However, three lines from the bridge are what really draw me in:

With the slightest of breezes
We fall just like leaves
And the rain washes us from the ground

The imagery is so good. I also appreciate the nice usage of similies and metaphors. It makes me think about how I tend to crumble when life knocks me down sometimes.

3. Survivor – “Across the Miles”

People think of ballads as cheesy, which they can be. But Jim Peterik did an amazing job writing lyrics not only conveying emotions but also telling the story of a human experience. The word choices and arrangements are what make this song amazing, to me. (Sure, the music itself is arranged uniquely and harmoniously/melodically, but I find more focus in lyrics as a word-oriented soul.)

When I’m all alone on a distant path
And my ticket home has been torn in half
Oh, I can hear your voice, girl I can feel your touch
Across the miles tonight

Even though the message is one conveyed in numerous songs, the presentation of it is different than usual. The beginning of the song on its own gives a clear picture of longing that I love so much. The rest of the lyrics follow suit that way. Highly recommend checking this song out if you never heard it in the past.

4. Avenged Sevenfold – “Victim”

This song hits hard. Enough said. I tend not to focus strongly on songs about loss so I do not regress. However, the musical arrangement is haunting and stays with me even after years. I also experienced a loss of a friend the same as the gentlemen in Avenged Sevenfold did with The Rev. Their “Nightmare” album is one of my favorites solely because of how raw it was emotionally.

Nothing lasts forever
For all good things it’s true
I’d rather trade it all
While somehow saving you

Those lyrics above bring me back to December 2015 after finding out my friend Courtney died from cancer. Of course, I knew dying happens and is a part of life; she was not the first death I experienced in my life. But every time those words, in particular, played I sang along in tears. I had found the words I could not find in my own writings to express how much I missed her. “Victim” will always stick with me for that reason.

5. Peppermint Creeps – “Heartbleed”

Hardly anyone knows of Peppermint Creeps. They were one of my favorites when I was fourteen years old. Many of their songs were fun and anti-society, which I was all about. (I still kind of am, honestly.) I listened to this song a lot when my depression ran deep at that young age. I felt so misunderstood. My music taste was either older than my classmates liked or completely out of left field from the mainstream, which made conversation difficult. I was the weird kid bullied around. Being a kid was tough sometimes. This song helped me express that.

All alone seems like no one understands
What makes so much sense to me
They just don’t see, who I am
(nobody understands)

The band is no longer around, but I still highly recommend giving them a listen if you’re into some fun punk glam (or at least into trying it).

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