Ok, So...I can't do it, ya'll. In the words of Awesomely Luvvie: I am unable to can.
Today's music is just too loud and stupid. I've tried to listen to Fetty Wap alone or with no liquor, and it's just not a match. I'm sure he's a nice young man. I saw an interview of him, and he impressed the hell out of me. But his music? It's just not for me sans company or whiskey.
The poster child for loud and stupid is Rihanna's Work. I was listening to it on my way home from work yesterday, and it actually made my entire body scowl:
I felt like the song was attacking me, forcing me to like it, to accept it, and my whole being was rejecting it with a vengeance. You ever had every part of you just upset? It's painful.
My body also did something unbelievable. Not only did she scowl, but she spoke to me. She said:
Nah. Can't do it. Couldn't do it. #HeWontDoThis (in Morgan Freeman's voice)
Do you see how loud and stupid songs effect you? It confuses you!
I turned the dial to 89.9, and I immediately felt Nirvana.
I didn't feel like anyone was hurting me. I didn't feel like I was trapped in a closet. I didn't feel like I was in danger.
The smooth yet mildly upbeat sounds of #TomMisch blanketed me with solace. #Logic gave me hip hop jazz a la A Tribe Called Quest, and #SamanthaJames...ah...Samantha.
Don't get me wrong. I can receive loud music (see: Jay Z's Tom Ford). I can receive stupid music (Ying Yang Twins Salt Shaker). But the combination (see: The Weeknd's The Hills)?
Nah. Can't do it. Couldn't do it. #HeWontLetMeDoIt (in Morgan Freeman's voice)
As my one friend's friend said: every Weeknd song sounds like something you hear in movies right before someone dies. WHY WOULD I SUBJECT MYSELF TO THAT?
I'd like to say that most people over 30 have this same experience, but I would be wrong about that. I live in L.A. where most seem to have the Peter Pan syndrome, so instead of blaming "age," I'll blame it on "evolving":
When a person evolves, the ears begin courting the spirit for a purely selfish reason: they don't want to get screwed over by other parts of the body. They have enough common sense to know that one day, the other parts will be making their cases for relief as well, notably the back. They just want to be the first ones to present theirs.
If I had to guess, I'd assume that this is the conversation my ears had with my spirit in my late 20s:
Ears: Hello, spirit. I'm here on behalf of Jen's right and left ears. She's not totally aware of how unhealthy Thrift Shop is to us at the moment, but she will soon enough. Please grant special sensitivity to us in the upcoming years. We ears would like to last as long as we can.
Pretty simple conversation, I know.
And because of my ears' proactivity, my spirit is now the benefactor of spirit-friendly music. All this means is that I now listen to music that doesn't challenge me to a duel every time I listen to it.
Here are 5 really great spirit-friendly songs you might like (some inspired by KCRW, of course), whether you're 30 or just over the music shenanigans:
1. "My Lar" by Bullion
This song just sounds like it wants to wrap you in a cloud and keep you there forever. I can only be on the cloud for 4 minutes because I have ish to do, but I enjoy the trip every time.
2. DJ Snake and AlunaGeorge "You Know You Like It"
See?? Not all of today's music is garbage. I can get down with this fo' sho'.
3. "Never Enough" by Logic
<3 + <3 + <3.
4. "Weekend Love" by Dwele
There aren't enough words in the dictionary for me to describe how lovely this song is. As soul music finds its body in the hands of overseas singers, we still have throwbacks like these to lean on.
5. "Find Your Wings" by Tyler, The Creator
Ahhhh...recommended by my friend Ki, this song is a truth. Tyler, a 20-something, knows a thing or two about spirit-friendly music. This is one of them.