On a hot day in June, pedestrians in Columbus, Ohio, did not expect to see the streets lined with people as far as the eye could see. What could make these otherwise seemingly normal people ditch their jobs and everyday lives so that they could camp out on the streets? These people and I all had the same dream: to see our favorite artist perform. We had come from all over the United States from completely different walks of life to see the same thing. We had all been united by one purpose. Because of music, we had all put aside our differences and come together to forget about our problems and the challenges of life for one night in order to sing along with these artists.
I met people from Delaware and Pennsylvania, and we had only known each other a total of six hours before we were walking down the street together to get ice cream and our noses pierced. This seems crazy to most people, and in any other context I would say the same. What other thing in life could bring people together in such a unique way? From doctor’s offices to retail stores, music is the background of life. When two people hear a song that they both like, they automatically have a connection they otherwise would not have.
When I am walking on campus and I see someone wearing a T-shirt from a band that I love, I automatically feel like I could be their friend because we have something so important in common. This is how I became acquainted with many of my best friends. During my freshman year, a girl came into my room to study with my roommate, and I was playing a song by Young the Giant. She gasped and asked me if I listened to them often, and I said,
“Of course.” It didn’t take long for us to start hanging out on the Front Lawn dissecting the meanings of hundreds of music videos. This is just one example, but it has happened too many times to count during my time at Harding.
Music connects people in ways that nothing else can. All it takes is for someone to tell me they like a song that means a lot to me, and I immediately feel an emotional connection to them. If I listen to a song because it explains my feelings, and someone else does the same thing, I know that we have had somewhat similar experiences.
Songs are also a way for me to express myself in ways that I had previously not been able to. When a song covers emotional subjects that are sometimes too difficult to talk about, simply showing someone a song can help them know where I am coming from. Though details of these experiences aren’t necessary for a connection, there is a newly found mutual understanding between us.
Music is a glue within friendships that this generation has been blessed with. From rap to classical to pop, there is no shortage of ways for us to connect. Though we all come from different walks of life, music is one way we can all connect. I encourage you to share your favorite artists with your friends and people in your class. You never know, a great new friendship might be just around the corner.