Music - finding a common ground

24th April, 2017   |    By Bre   |    4 min read

As a US-native 20-something living in Australia for the first time, Tune In Not Out (TINO) struck me as a resource which I intuitively understood, and have never seen the likes of before.

The ‘Tune Your Mood’ music section which features on each topic page within TINO, with its interactive playlists and ability to talk about what the music does for you, seems genius to me. I speak for not just myself but fellow teens and young adults from the US when I say that for many of us the world of music is an invaluable, permanent fixture in our lives. It lifts us up, lets us be sad for a time, allows (and relieves) anger, and adds to the enjoyment factor of even the most mundane tasks of everyday life.

I appreciate that about the playlists here; they enable us, regardless of background or setting, to connect through something that is intimately important to us. Most importantly, the information shared is such that no one has to feel like he or she is divulging too much. It’s easier to share a song than say “I feel angry because..” This platform opens the door to let someone else into our world for a little while.

Songs provide comfort by making us feel a little less alone. How much greater is that feeling when you share it with someone? I think this similarity is true not just between the US and Australia but between young adults world wide, and the fact that this connection is possible everywhere is nothing but thrilling. Music just gets it. We are able to give off a burst of creativity simply by listening and understanding.

I was always the one who had lyrics scribbled everywhere; on notebooks, assignments, planners, what have you. I think my favorite thing about music is the feeling that comes from hearing someone illustrate a thought or feeling in a way I’ve never heard, but fits exactly what I’m thinking. The beginning chords of ‘Tessellate’ by Alt-J, Matt Corby’s howl in ‘Brother,’ and the piano melody in ‘Harmony Sometimes’ by Big Scary speak to me not through words, but in a very specific way of being when I hear them. When Florence sings “Then I heard your heart beating/you were in the darkness too/So I stayed in the darkness with you,” or Joni Mitchell sighs “Well something’s lost, but something’s gained/In living every day,”

I just understand. These lyrics and beats and notes are a living breathing testament to memories of my life: the people who touched my life, the events that were soothed or aided by some musical recovery, or simply moments I have immortalized through a loved bit of music.

As I looked through the existing playlists on TINO, I’m struck by how many of you also use music as a way to stay in touch with your unique selves, as a method of coping, and to help remember or even forget. This common ground makes me feel right at home, despite being 14,484 km away. Let’s share this tool, but more importantly this form of connection with others who can only benefit from TINO and its’ playlists and information. Knowing someone understands and is on your level is the most simple but often, the most valuable help a person can give.

I think the Shins said it best when they sang “Well, I guess it’s only life/It’s only natural/We all spend a little while going down the rabbit hole../I’ve been down the very road you’re walking now/It doesn’t have to be so dark and lonesome/It takes a while but we can figure this thing out and turn it back around.”

Written by Bre  – a 20-something psychology graduate who is in Australia on a working holiday visa. Thanks Bre and welcome to Australia! Check out Bre’s own playlist below. You can also submit your own to be featured on TINO – just checkout the music section on any topic page.

Also check the related topics:  

Music and our mental health

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