By Clinton Dick
Editor in Chief

It has been said that music is a key component of a person’s identity. Music is something we identify with and something that represents our personality. It seems that music is more than just a form of identification or a conversation starter between strangers. Lyrics, sound and rhythm influence our decision making skills and our inspiration to take action.

Take “Don’t Stop Believing” by Journey for example. The song’s popularity isn’t because it is just another catchy tune. It is because it installs hope. We want to go out and tackle the world.

How about that one slow song that can almost bring a tear to our eye? We all have one of those love ballads that we turn on every once in a while to remember, to forget or to give hope. That song where we listen to it and think of a person is very powerful. Whoever he or she may be, try giving them a call next time you listen to it. You know you’ve thought about it. We have a 50 percent chance of making a great decision.

If in fact things don’t work out there is always the angry stage, which is fun, but the most dangerous when dealing with music. We like to turn up the ear-ripping, hardcore rock music and channel our anger through that. It may be a healthy form of anger-management, but try not to destroy too much when rocking out. Bad music has never been proven to cause bad decisions, but that doesn’t mean it can’t be a contributor to poor judgment.

The right song lyric matched with an actual life situation can give the listener a direct connection with a song. That song and that lyric then become a part of our lives. We remember it in certain situations and then we live it.

The line from Bruce Springsteen’s song “Dancing in the Dark” that sings “I check myself in the mirror. I want to change my clothes, my hair, my face,” might come up when we looks in the mirror and decide we don’t like what we see. Then, we make a change not just because we know the song, but because we live the song. It is almost as if music is more persuasive than entertainment.

We can be walking down the street in the summer, smell the grass, feel the warmth and start singing a summer song to ourselves. Is doing this going to inspire an action? Maybe and maybe not, but it helps to identify with the time of season, the atmosphere and an emotion that our five senses can’t create.

Music is entertaining. Music is catchy, gets stuck in our heads and gives us something to listen to rather than the sound of tire rolling on pavement down the road or low ruffles of the wind outside our bedrooms. Music does so much more than that, though. It gives us the inspiration we need to accomplish something we might have never thought we were capable of. We shouldn’t let music run our life. Let it guide us to the right decision and identity that we want to have.

Clinton Dick is a junior majoring in convergent journalism. You may e-mail him at clinton.dick@sckans.edu.