Musical Memories

Mary Kathryne - Glen Allen, Virginia
Entered on February 26, 2009
Age Group: 18 - 30
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From a very young age music has been a passion of mine. My grandma will happily tell you that I knew every single Christmas carol ever written before I reached the age of three. When I was four I would dress up in my favorite outfit, use my tape player that had a microphone attached to it, and sing and dance as low quality amplification turned my living room into a stage. Even though my dream of growing up to be Celine Dion has never played out I still recognize music as an extremely important, if not essential part of my life.

I have incredibly fond memories of returning home after school and walking through the front door, greeted by the smell of food cooking, my mother’s welcoming embrace, and the sound of music blaring throughout the house. No matter what my mom was doing she had music playing. I was an avid Bruce Springsteen fan by the time I reached middle school and since then I have seen the boss in concert four times. My mother’s strong love for music has been passed down to me, and because of her I have come to believe in music and its ability to bring back memories from the past.

The effect music has on your mood is often heavily rooted in the memories associated with that particular song. Music has the spectacular ability to bring back vivid memories of the past. If music is an integral part of your everyday life you are bound to have thousands of memories connected to thousands of familiar songs. To this day when I hear any Third Eye Blind song come on the radio I am taken back to the hot summers of the 1990’s where I spent my days at the Glen Allen Pool. Although the association with a song may be bad or good, the constant reminders of our past help to ground us and bring tremendous joy. I can still remember what song played during my homecoming dance sophomore year when my crush approached me and asked me to slow dance, and the poignant song that was played at the funeral of a close friend. Whenever I hear any song that has a meaning in my life I am taken back to the instant when it happened and either able to further appreciate or reflect the subject. Even now as I flip through the poor selection of Harrisonburg radio stations I often stumble upon melodic relics of the past.

The art of music has drastically improved the quality of my life throughout my eighteen years and will persist in doing so. I will continue to enjoy the countless memories brought back by an immeasurable number of songs, and continue to benefit from the lessons and happiness that came with them. Plato said that “Music gives soul to the universe, wings to the mind, flight to the imagination, and charm and gaiety to life and to everything.” This I believe.