This I Believe

James - Charlotte, North Carolina
Entered on September 20, 2007
Age Group: Under 18

This I Believe

I’m sure its happened before, you’re sitting in class and you see someone with a shirt on from a band you like, so you go up and talk to them about it, or vise versa. You might even become friends with them, just over a tee shirt. If this has happened to you, then you’ll understand where I’m coming from when I say, “this I believe: Music can bring the world together.” I know it sounds completely cliché and overstated; (you could pick up any John Lennon CD and hear the same thing) but it’s something that I truly believe and embrace.

For me, music was the first thing that introduced the concept of true friendship, even brotherhood. I have met some of my very best friends simply because of our similar tastes in music.

If you’re looking for proof, its all in the lyrics, like these from the politically charged punk/hardcore band, Verse from their song “Hard To Breathe”:

We don’t bite the oppressive hand

That’s feeding us all lies

The hand that feeds us

Is the hand that’s keeping us down

And these from the legendary classic rock song “For What It’s Worth” by Buffalo Springfield:

Paranoia strikes deep

Into your life it will creep

It starts when you’re always afraid

You step out of line, the man come and take you away

These songs are about oppression in the world. The Verse song talks about oppression of the United States government and some of the censorship that the government controls in the media, “feeding us lies” because we can’t go and see what’s really happening for ourselves. The Buffalo Springfield song was fueled by the angst and frustration that our country was experiencing during the Vietnam War era, and was one of the most influential songs that called for protest and action against the war in Vietnam. These are prime examples of expression of ideas through music. And they are also prime examples of music that promotes action, which music is great at doing.

It’s amazing that two songs from completely different cultures could be so similar. These songs are from two completely different eras, but share a common theme. Just think, my parents could have been listening to “For What It’s Worth” when they were my age just as I’m listening to “Hard to Breathe” now, and for those three minutes, were connected. Just like that.

Its hard to think that something as simple as music can accomplish as big of a task as putting common ground between two completely different people, cultures, races, even social groups, or, classes. What else can do something like that? Music is one of the only things that everyone can relate to, and it often lures us to different styles, thus connecting us to different people. So, in a sense music is just a big cycle, and as long as humans are around, music will never stop bringing them together.