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Music For Your Mood and the Holidays

Ashley DeShields

Music has been a part of people’s lives for almost as long as people have been on this earth. It conveys our happiness, our sadness, our anger, and other emotions in between. There is also music for every occasion, including birthdays, funerals, and weddings. As we have evolved, so has our ability to take music wherever we go, from the giant phonograph to the miniscule i-Pod shuffle. People turn to music to block out background noise, and to keep themselves focused.

The most common sight when at the gym or with people who run is the wire running up to someone’s ears. Listening to music when running can help people keep their pace and train for different events. Some students shared with the Pioneer their favorite songs and artists to listen to when they work out. M.P.A. student Bas Beverwijk,  who is from Holland, said his favorites are “Dj Chuckie – Dirty Dutch remix and Swedish house mafia”. It’s easy to understand why the song is upbeat and perfect for running and keeping one energized. Nick Conte, an Art Therapy major, said that his favorite artists when he is working out are “Disturbed, Headstrong, and Linkin Park. I generally like rock music and I generally find myself listening to these artists the most when I am at the gym. I set my pace to the beat of the song and I am able to keep myself focused.”

Not all the music one listens to has to be super up-beat, it can be a calmer pace. Jess Singh, an English Education major, said “my favorite tunes are Esclavo De Sus Besos by David Bisbal, Stereo Love by Edward Maya and Waving Flag by K’naan.”

When it comes to homework, there are really two options that will work – instrumental music or no music at all. Those who choose to listen to music when they study or do homework are using it to block out outside noise and distractions. Just because you are studying in the library doesn’t mean it is quiet. Nick Conte listens to “Beethoven, 90’s vitamin music, and other instrumentals.” Ashley Staib chooses “Generally classical or instrumental jazz, no particular song or artist. I need to listen to songs without words because otherwise I can’t concentrate and I tend to sing along.” Some people are better able to block out noise and distractions because listening to music comes at a cost.  Singh said “I don’t listen to music when I’m studying since it has been shown to decrease your retention overall.”

If you aren’t into listening to Beethoven or classical music, try movie soundtracks that are all instrumental, such as the Lord of the Rings, Inception, Harry Potter, Tron Legacy, or Pirates of the Caribbean.

Since it’s the holiday season, these students also provided their favorite songs for this time of year.  Beverwijk’s favorite is a throwback from the past –  “Santa is coming to town, by the Jackson 5; the King of pop before he went solo, without a doubt a classic that can do no wrong.” Conte chose an edgier side to the holiday season with the “‘Carole of the Bells Rock’ remix and the oh, so hilarious Adam Sandler’s ‘Hanukah Song.’” Some may find the second song crude, but you will get a lot of laughs out of it, as it goes against the grain of the stereotypical holiday songs. Finally, Staib loves the timeless and powerful voice of Mariah Carey for her holiday selection, with selections such as “All I want for Christmas is You”, “Oh Santa”, and “Oh Holy Night.”

Everyone should check out these songs. You may find a new favorite and also see that you are not so different from your fellow students, regardless of whether you know them or not.

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