Music is such a big influence in life, especially my own. Music is something I cannot live without so here are twelve tracks, all by male artists, that have influenced my life the greatest and why.
I MISS YOU BY BLINK 182
The first song I ever heard by Blink 182 was I Miss You. The first time I heard this song was in 2014 when I had gotten really into 5 Seconds of Summer, I was on YouTube perusing some of their lesser known songs when I came across the cover of this song. From the first moment the song began I dropped what I was doing and really listened to the song. Since then I’ve really heard the song and I’ve learnt so much about it, hearing the little catches in their voices and the slightest change of volume. After first hearing it the song immediately became my favourite, I listen to this song every New Years Eve from 11.59 to 12.01 with my eyes, shut laying in bed, the first thing I hear each year is this song. I love a great many number of Blink 182 songs for example: Pretty Little Girl, Adam’s Song, No Future, What’s My Age Again? but no other song could ever mean as much to me as this one does.
EVERY BREATH YOU TAKE BY THE POLICE
Another of my favourite songs is Every Breath You Take, I especially love the ambiguity of this song. Recently, when talking to a friend I recommended Every Little Thing She Does Is Magic as this I found was the song that described how they felt perfectly, upon this I was reminded of this track which has become a great favourite. What I find particularly endearing about this song is the intro to the song, the instrumental throughout also matches the beauty of this but for someone who usually sticks to regularly listening to the same things was amazing, I was hooked. A lot of people use this song as their wedding song; clearly the narrator loves the subject of the song, everyone wants to be noticed like that. However, the song is actually about a stalker stalking one of his victims, the ambiguity of this makes the song all the more endearing to me.
“Every breath you take and every move you make
Every bond you break, every step you take, I’ll be watching you
Every single day and every word you say
Every game you play, every night you stay, I’ll be watching you”
SOMEWHERE IN NEVERLAND BY ALL TIME LOW
I actually prefer the acoustic version of this song. I also find this song is incredibly relatable dealing with the transition from school to work, Peter Pan has always been one of my favourites and the fact that this song incorporates the idea of wanting to back to a childhood story rather than grow up evokes the relatableness. Not many people, that I know, like All Time Low however I have always had a soft spot, they do make a lot of inappropriate jokes and laugh a lot but they also show a more serious side dealing with issues almost everyone goes through. Listening to both the acoustic and the original I find there are so many differences for example the sincerity in Alex Gaskarth’s voice, both versions of the track are so different yet both just as freeing.
HEARTBEAT SLOWING DOWN THE ALL AMERICAN REJECTS
I accidentally found The All-American Rejects while on YouTube, I was listening to music while tidying up when Dirty Little Secret came on, I sat down to watch the video and the way Tyson Ritter was staring down the camera whispering gave me chills. Obviously, I then had to hear more so subsequently I spent the weekend doing nothing but listening to The All-American Rejects. Over the next two days I had accumulated a playlist of my favourites, including songs like Damn You, Gives You Hell, Someday’s Gone, Beekeeper’s Daughter, I For You and a whole array more. I constantly went back to this playlist and listened to the same songs over and over again. A couple of weeks ago though, I decided to listen to some of the tracks I hadn’t heard so much as a lot can change about you in a few months. Doing this I heard Heartbeat Slowing Down for what felt like the first time, I loved the brutality of the lyrics and the honesty in Ritter’s voice. I listened to this song over and over again all night knowing it inside out, I then did some research into the origin of the song and found out that the band were having trouble producing music which they wanted to put out there, in an interview Ritter said the song was about “something he killed” the rawness of this comment stuck with me and every time I listen to the song I think of this.
LIFESTYLE OF THE RICH AND FAMOUS
I listened to Good Charlotte purely because 5 Seconds of Summer loved Good Charlotte, I later realised the Madden Brothers were apart of Good Charlotte so that gave me all the more reason to listen to them. It was The Anthem and Girls and Boys that really got me hooked but when I was added to a 5SOS group chat on Twitter and someone recommended Lifestyle Of The Rich And Famous I thought why not? So I listened. I loved the idea of celebrities talking about how other celebrities were so dependent on their lifestyle that they couldn’t even spend a week out of that lifestyle, they also talked about the problems with in the legal system, there is a lyric about there is no such thing as doing life for murder when you’re famous and have money. The upbeat nature of the song makes the song catchy which I think is essential in getting the message out.
MISS MISSING YOU BY FALL OUT BOY
One of my old friends was obsessed with Fall Out Boy and probably still is, I’d always liked Fall Out Boy but never as much as they thought, they asked me to listen to tis song so of course I did. They sent me the YouTube link to the video, watching the video I was super confused, but watching it back after creating an interpretation of the song got me thinking. Questions like why are they running around with a suitcase, turned to what if the suitcase represents the love he once had? Like he’s finally stopped missing her and it but now he has nothing else to fill the void with so opening the suitcase would let out all the feelings of their end, filling the void. I love that the narrator described his significant other as his “picket fence”, everyone has the dream of sitting on the porch with their white picket fence, it is such a powerful symbol of future and love, yet so mundane, the fact that she’s no longer his picket fence says a lot about how he views her and their love.
GOOD GUYS BY MIKA
Mika is one of the most amazing people to walk the Earth, in my opinion. He can speak three languages fluently and a further two fairly well, Mika typically sings about things that directly affects him and makes himself vulnerable in his tracks, particularly this one, this makes me admire him all the more. The first song I heard by Mika was We Are Golden, when I was seven my nanna and grandad bought me the album (The Boy Who Knew Too Much), I loved him from the first instant I heard him but I kept it a secretfrom my friends probably because I thought they would judge me but also because I wanted to keep his voice to myself. Several years later, at fifteen and I hear Mika again in my French class, we listen to Elle Me Dit and appreciate his voice and I decided to go home and to hear more as I thought it would help me in my French. I listened to his French music first but shortly after some of his English songs followed, I was again hooked. I noticed he had an Orchestra version for each one of his tracks on No Place Like Heaven, foolishly I stayed away from this – I wish I had broadened my mind sooner – Good Guys has since been my favourite. I especially love that he introduces the men he is calling out to as Gay Guys before moving on to call them the Good Guys as if barriers between sexuality matter, the good guys are just that regardless of sexual orientation. I also enjoy the fact that he sings a list of names, people who have shaped his life, after doing more research into the song I found out that when recording a few songs he walked into the studio asking ‘Where have all the gay guys gone?’ I love how much of a non-issue it is. The video for this is also fantastic as well as the video for All She Wants.
OUTER SPACE / CARRY ON BY 5 SECONDS OF SUMMER
5SOS. 5SOS. 5SOS (5 ss-o-ss by the way not 5 es-oh-es). My favourite band. When 5 Seconds of Summer released their debut single She Looks So Perfect I really liked it. That was the only song that I knew they had released so I ended up listening to that on repeat and HATING it, shortly after Don’t Stop was released, my best friend (at the time) loved 5SOS whereas I did not. We went to a party and Don’t Stop came on, I remember shouting over the music to her ‘oh my God I love these guys’, that summer was spent downloading every 5SOS song I could and learning it. That summer I went on holiday to Florida, I remember sitting on a bench in Frontier Land (Magic Kingdom) and playing ‘Out Of My Limit’ that is one of my holiday highlights. In October 2015, they released the album Sounds Good, Feels Good. Outer Space / Carry On was the last song I heard and was an excellent finish. I love how beautiful the song is and how much hope it gives, I also love how it incorporates a lot of things from the other songs on the album, this album was lot more philosophical and I especially love that the band want to discuss these topics rather that just write songs about girls. The way both songs link together is also astonishing, Outer Space takes quite a hopeless outlook as if nothing is going to be alright without her but Carry On comes back with a lot of strength and hope; you can still be happy with one foot still in the gutter.
“You know it’s gonna get better”
WHEN YOU WERE YOUNG BY THE KILLERS
Mr Brightside is a classic, there is no doubt about it. At school, in English, our teacher played Mr Brightside, the entire class began singing the song and swaying, it actually felt like we were united like the social pressures didn’t matter anymore, of course that ended with the song but what it did do was inspire me to try to find out more about The Killers and listen to their music. Similar to most I loved Human and Somebody Told Me, but I also loved When You Were Young. Being a teenage girl and an incurable romantic (please don’t be cringey though) I struggled with my thoughts on whether or not I believed ‘the one’ existed and I liked that this song consoled me, it helped me to understand that you can be with someone and for them not to be ‘the one’ and you could be just as happy. It also helped me to understand that you’re not always going to get what you’re looking for as well as showing me what it looks like to be naive (in the music video) which kind of scared me a little. Nevertheless, the song evokes a lot of ideas in my head making it one of my favourite.
AUTUMN LEAVES BY ED SHEERAN
“Another mind, another soul
Another body to grow old
It’s not complicated”
This song is such a beautiful one, the calmness and the rawness of his voices makes it all the more beautiful. I love the first few lines, the amount of people who find the topic of the mind, the body and soul a complicated one kind of upsets me, the mind, body and soul should be talked about, I love the way that he presents them so simply with the addition of it’s not complicated as if he means it almost sarcastically implying the lack of discussion and exasperation he feels when people are scared off by this topic.
“And you’re miles away
And yesterday you were here with me”
Those two lines are my favourite, they remind me of Act Like You Love Me by Shawn Mendes, a person can be in one place and then in just 24 hours they are somewhere totally different, it makes you feel as if everything you have are autumn leaves that will drift away, however the leaves will always grow back.
STAND IN THE RAIN BY JESSARAE
In April this year I went to a 5 Seconds of Summer concert, this was my first concert which was fitting for my favourite band. The special guest for the British leg of the tour was Jessarae and my my my was I impressed. He sang a song called Stand In The Rain, however did not know this at the time, all I had was a 46 second video of the song, for days I searched the internet trying to find it because I felt to connected to it. Jessarae even replied to a tweet I made asking when it would be out, obviously I was thrilled by this but moe importantly I was devastated it wasn’t even released yet and I’d have to wait months, by this point I still didn’t know the name and I listened to the video on many occasions, finally in July he released the song (and also three others, one of which I hadn’t heard, Monday Girl)! I was incredibly excited to hear the song again so I wouldn’t have to cling to what I could remember, I’ve listened to it almost every day since, my favourite lyric
“It may be hard to cross the ocean but baby there’s no other way, If you wanna feel the sunshine you gotta stand in the rain”
has always stuck with me and if I ever chose to get a tattoo that is probably the lyric I would choose. This song really related to how I felt and has changed the way I view my courage.
ONE CALL AWAY BY CHARLIE PUTH
Charlie Puth is a recent addition to my list of favourite artists. I remember being in the car and the song Marvin Gaye came on, I can’t say I am particularly fond of Meghan Trainor so I acted like I hated the entire thing but last week I was randomly singing the song. Once I have a song in my head I can’t not listen to it so I went away to hear Marvin Gaye, straight after We Don’t Talk Anymore played, I hadn’t properly heard this and I knew a friend liked it so I listened to it and that was when One Call Away came on. I still can’t decide whether or not I prefer the original or the acoustic version which is unusual I generally prefer the acoustic as that usually contains the most emotion in the singer’s voice. My favourite part is when he says you can’t even compare him to Superman, he’ll save the day faster. I love the innocence of this song and it’s one of those you don’t hear for a while that when you do makes you happy.