Music: a blessing and a curse

Published 9:56 pm Monday, November 21, 2016

Music has been an integral part of my life since I can remember.

I would have to credit my father for stoking my early passion for music.

It all started in our dark green Dodge Durango.

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“Give me some of that X,” my dad would say.

I repositioned myself in the noisy, faded gray leather seat and reached for my dad’s massive, black CD case. I flipped through numerous rows of multi-colored CDs until I found DMX’s “The Great Depression.”

I handed the CD to my dad’s waiting hand and watched him place it into the reader.

I knew he was going to go to his favorite — “I Miss You.”

As the soothing, melancholy track played again and again, I could feel DMX’s hurt as he rapped about his lost relatives.

Those times in the car exposed me to an array of artists and music genres I probably shouldn’t have been listening to at such a young age. But I appreciate my dad exposing me to it because it has shaped me into who I am today.

It was only right for me to pick up band in middle school and continue it through high school. I was far from the most talented, but my passion for music and instrumentation carried me through.

Many of my friends and family call me an “old soul,” because of my mannerisms and the music I choose to listen to. You can catch me listening to the O’Jays one day, Lauryn Hill on another day and 2Pac the next.

I simply have an appreciation for heartfelt, profound lyrics.

There are “new school” artists that I do listen to and appreciate. But, my father’s Durango playlist has often been my go-to music and always brings back nostalgic memories.

I’ve been told I respond positively to music during times of anxiety. So often when I’m stressed with school or work in general, I pop in either my headphones or my auxiliary cord and allow my troubles to dissipate over familiar tunes.

However, when the music stops, life brings me back down from Cloud Nine.

This has taught me to tap into religion first because music at times can serve as a distraction and a short-lived pleasure. In times of stress, I’m starting to learn the power of prayer.

It’s often uncomfortable, but I feel this is key to sustaining me in the long run.

Music will forever be one of my building blocks. But I’m beginning to realize although music can be therapeutic, I need to challenge myself to find my peace in God first.