I’ve often said that music is the soundtrack of our lives. We turn to music to create or to alter our mood. Music has a special power to turn things around or to drive us into action. I simply love and need music in my life. It helps me in my craft as a writer and artist, and in my other career as an educator and social justice advocate. My favorite music to listen to, however, are love songs. My all time favorite love song is one that my husband sang to me for the first time when we were still talking to each other long distance online.
My husband and I met almost ten years ago on New Year’s Eve while on a religious chat site, and we had a long distance relationship before getting married. We’d only physically been together twice before he moved out to California to be with me permanently, but it seemed like we’d known each other for ages because of all the time we spent online and on the phone (my phone bill and his were outrageous). Despite our brief engagement, we talked about everything and anything for almost four to six hours a night. On one such night during the third hour of our phone conversation, he decided to play a song in the background that I recognized. I was never really a fan of the song because I wasn’t into the style of music sung by the band. That changed as the song continued to play, and my then boyfriend Robert began to sing the song to me… off key, and at the top of his lungs (and I’m relatively certain he got some of the words wrong too). It was too adorable and sweet of him that I couldn’t help but fall in love with the song, and especially with him even more.
When we listen to a love song, it does something to us. The very lyrics of the song itself may hit a nerve or send a message that we needed to hear at that very moment. For my husband and I, it was the fact he sang the song to me despite his lack of vocal talent in order to comfort me. Prior to his singing the song to me, I was venting about my parents who were insisting that I have an elaborate wedding and invite over 500 guests, most of which were their friends and not mine. I had turned to my fiancé for a listening ear all the while wishing he was in California already to hold me in his arms and kiss my frustrated tears away. His singing not only made me smile, it warmed my heart to know that he was stepping out of his comfort zone in order to show me that our love would get us through the whole wedding preparation process. His love song sung to me, off key, out of tune, and one by a group I wasn’t into, was and still is my favorite song. Why? Because HE sang to me out of the love he had for me.
The only other song my husband dedicated to me was one he did not sing, but it was by an artist I do like. The love song was upbeat and trending at the time by a popular artist. My husband, during our first year of marriage, dedicated the song “Just The Way You Are” by Bruno Mars on a day that I was having an especially difficult time with my boss and some co-workers. Again, Robert had done it while I was at work, and out of the blue called me to tell me to listen to a song on the radio. When I listened to the words, I knew my husband was telling me that he loved me through music he could not sing himself. It brightened my day, and through his dedication and love, sung by another, he was telling me that everything was going to be alright. He was telling me he loved me. Such is the beauty of a love song – sung in person or dedicated on the radio. The love remains long after the song is over.
As much as I enjoy having songs dedicated or sung to me, I also derive pleasure and joy in singing songs to others. I’ve sung songs for my husband, relatives and family, and dear friends. However, I reserve love songs for Robert, my husband… or so I thought. I recently realized that I also sing love songs to someone other than my husband. My two sons are the “other” men in my life I sing love songs to, and they seem to have learned how to recognize my singing from the womb. When my I was pregnant with my children (both times), I used to sing songs to them as I would drive home from work. Yes, they were in my womb, but I believe they could hear me. Once they were born, I continued singing to them. I would sing them to sleep or sing to keep them asleep. I still sing to them, but often just because I feel like singing to them. One day while I was doing some light chores around the house, I heard my oldest son humming a familiar tune. It had been a while since I had heard the tune, but I instinctively knew it. It was “Baby Mine” by Allison Kraus (a song adapted from the Disney movie classic Dumbo). He was just an infant when I sang it to him, but he somehow knew the song. It was my love song to him and to his brother when they were newborns and infants.
A lullaby or a special song sung to our children are another form of love song. The expression of love conveyed in that special good-night song is immeasurable to a child. What they feel is loved, protected, and cared for. Yes, love songs, or songs in general are powerful mood setters and mood alter-makers. That is the beauty of it all. Music truly is the soundtrack of our lives, and now we also see that it can set the pace and tone of our life as well. For a brief but really cool presentation on how music affects our mood, and how the music we select can alter or “set the mood,” go to https://prezi.com/5xuec40rz02k/how-can-music-affect-mood.
In my book series, The Last Prophet, we read in Book Five, Raziel’s Revelation, that the main characters often hear the sound of angels singing. The sound of that choir of angels, singing and praising God is the sound that not only brings a sense of peace, but also comfort, especially when the person listening is in a state of distress or discomfort of some sort. While we might not all hear the songs of angels singing, but we ourselves can offer the same type of comfort and peace by sharing the beauty of a song. Whether we sing it ourselves for another, or we play a pre-recorded song and let the lyrics seep into the very fiber of our being, love songs possess that unique ability to change things around us. We need only look for the opportunity to share that song.
Who do you plan on sharing your love song with? What song uplifts you? Comment in the space provided.
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