If lockdown has given me one thing so far, it's a newfound appreciation for music. Don't get me wrong, I have always loved music, but in times like these I am reminded of just how important it is. Music is a healer, it brings people together and provides a release from stress and uncertainty - which is needed now more than ever.
One thing that has helped me pass the time during lockdown is Instagram challenges. After downing drinks, running 5km and posting pictures of my younger self, I finally got tagged in a challenge that I actually wanted to do. I was asked to share my four favourite albums with my followers. After much deliberation, I eventually narrowed down my eclectic album selection to four, posted them on my story and carried on with my day. But, after participating in this challenge, I realised that music is serving a bigger purpose in my life now than it ever has before.
Music is literally getting me through each day.
Whenever I'm feeling down, unmotivated or lonely (which, let's be honest, is most of the time right now) I find comfort in the fact that I can plug in my headphones and disappear into a world of music that I have curated; inside my Spotify safe haven there is no doubt that I will feel content again. I made my Spotify account in 2015, so the songs that I've gathered over these 5 years are nostalgic to say the least and it's surprised me how many memories music can evoke. If I'm missing my friends, the soulful beats of Tom Misch's 'Geography' and dreamy lyrics of Lorde's 'Melodrama' transport me back to some of my favourite summers nights spent with them. When I'm missing travelling, I listen to Stéphane Pompougnac's 'Hôtel Costes' mixes and I'm on the beach again, and if I need a night out Kanye West's 'American Boy' is my go to song. I used to play music for background noise and not give it much more thought, but now it's at the forefront of each day and I'm so grateful for the myriad of memories that lies behind each track.
As well as helping me reminisce on better days, music has also really helped me clear my head and remember that I'm not alone. The poetic lyrics and soothing sounds of Lana Del Rey have been particularly helpful for me during quarantine. In her 2017 song Change, Lana reminds us that 'maybe it's enough to just be where we are' and in Mariners Apartment Complex she sings 'you lose your way, just take my hand... don't look too far, right where you are, that's where I am.' Lana's music has always stood out to me, but her words are extremely fitting for the situation that we are in right now, and so I find myself viewing her music in a whole new light. Her sentiments are comforting, serving as a reminder that we are never alone and that it's ok to slow down and take each day as it comes.
Globally, it's evident that music is having the same effect on people. Last weekend, hundreds of thousands of people gathered around their screens to watch as Global Citizen, Lady Gaga and friends hosted an eight hour live streamed concert straight from their homes to ours. Events like this just prove the power that music holds in times of uncertainty. Not only did the Live Aid-esque concert raise $127m for coronavirus relief, it also managed to unite the world in a time that we've never been further apart.
So, in true ABBA style, I say thank you for the music. God knows how boring quarantine would be without you!