One of my favorite parts of any major city is spontaneous street music. I find it a great way to bring strangers together on the street as well as a great distraction as we’re rushing through with our busy lives.
I came across the jovial group pictured above as they were playing in front of one of Berklee College of Music buildings. The brass band livened up the crowd with their music and chants of “Our deepest desire is to be inspired.” I left the audience with a smile in having encountered this group.
As I was rushing to class via public transit, I came across a violinist playing “Come Fly with Me”, one of my favorite Sinatra songs. The segment I heard calmed me as I took time to take in the music, and feel nostalgic for the times i listened to Ol’ Blue Eyes. I think I’ll return to hearing his voice again.
The other day I challenged a friend and myself to think of one-liners from or titles of songs that conveyed a simple positive message. Here’s the list we came up with. It’s still a work in progress, but I’m still happy to share it.Feel free to add!
It’s gonna be all right/Shake it off – Taylor Swift
Don’t stop believin – Journey
Let it be – Beatles
Every little thing, is gonna be alright – Bob Marley
What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger – Kelly Clarkson
Carry on – Fun
Shake it out – Florence + the Machine
Today’s the first day of the rest of your life – (Love will hold us together) Matt Maher
Raise your glass – Pink
Cause you’re amazing just the way you are – Bruno Mars
You don’t know you’re beautiful – One Direction
Let it go – Frozen
Sometimes after a long day of speechie grad school you just need it shake it off.
On a guitar.
Preferrably one without teardrops.
A friend and I de-stressed during a break between classes by listening to multiple renditions of “Blank Space” in Spanish. We also came across “When I’m Gone” in Spanish and pulled up a few other songs we know from our exposure to Spanish music during previous travels. It was a moment of nostalgia for our international adventures, and a good opportunity to listen to some fun music.
This past summer, I was introduced to the duo Nico and Vinz with their hit “Am I Wrong“. In the following few months, I’ve been looking into them sporadically, learning their background and discovering a few more songs. The two have a unique mix of African and R&B rhythm, and present positive messages in their music. Recently I have found a link of their entire album, which I have found invigorating and moving. I will definitely be following them as they continue to expand their music.
Activity #10 that a grad student on break can do: relearn how to pick Christmas songs on the guitar. It’d make Sr. Mary Kevin Ryan, the little retired nun I took $5 half-hour lessons from for a couple of years, proud.