Music of My Heart: Pt. 2

Another day, another influential album.¬† ūüôā

Second on the list is…

breakaway

Album:  Breakaway
Artist:  Kelly Clarkson
Released:  2004

Anybody else reallyyyyyyyy into American Idol back in the day?¬† I know I was a huge fan of the ORIGINAL series (I’ve got opinions on the recent revival of the show–that’s for another post) that brought us the legend known as Kelly Clarkson.

I must admit, I wasn’t even rooting for Kelly to win the inaugural season of AI.¬† I was a teenage girl back then, which meant I was squarely on #TeamJustinGuarini.¬† (What can I say?¬† He was cute, and I had raging teen girl hormones controlling my thoughts.)¬† But Kelly definitely deserved to win.¬† Homegurl can SANG.¬† I enjoyed her debut album (Thankful) that came out as a result of her winning the show.

But her sophomore album¬†Breakaway…that album was special.¬† It was the soundtrack for my high school years, even though it didn’t come out until I was a senior.

For a long time, I didn’t know that the feelings of desolation I had were actually signs of depression.¬†¬†Breakaway¬†helped me get through the pain I experienced (especially breaking up with my first boyfriend).¬† One song in particular called “Hear Me” was my heartsong.¬† I felt like I was in a crowd, screaming for help, and no one noticed.

Hear me
I’m cryin’ out
I’m ready now
Turn my world upside down
Find me
I’m lost inside the crowd
It’s getting loud
I need you to see
I’m screaming for you to please
Hear me

(If you haven’t checked our Part 1 of this series, please do!)

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Music of My Heart: Pt. 1

Music, at its essence, is what gives us memories.

And the longer a song has existed in our lives, the more memories we have of it. 

-Stevie Wonder

Mr. Stevie had it right, y’all.¬† So much music colors my life.¬† A song comes on and within the first few notes, I’m transported.¬† Memories, bright and sharply focused, take me back in time.¬† Depending on the song, I could laugh out loud or burst into tears.¬† I welcome all the memories–happy and sad–that the music brings to me.

Starting today, I’ll post the artwork for an album.¬† Some are old; others are more recent.¬† Some brought me joy; others got me through the toughest times in my life.¬† All make up the soundtrack of my life, the music of my heart.

First up…

lemonade.jpg

Album:  Lemonade
Artist:  Beyoncé
Released:  2016

 

I remember exactly where I was when I first heard¬†Lemonade.¬† After a cruise celebrating my mother’s birthday I sat in the Detroit Metro airport, waiting for the flight to take me home.¬† I’d heard the buzz about the album–the controversy over “Formation” at the Super Bowl halftime show, the shock that she made a whole entire¬†film¬†to go with it (#whodoesthat #yourfavecouldnever #shesthegreatest)–so I had to hear what the Queen was talkin’ ’bout. I purchased the album on iTunes and listened to it over…

…and over…

…and over.

At some points, I openly wept.¬† In the terminal, on the plane–I couldn’t hold back the tears.¬† You see, I had a tough time recovering from abuse from my ex-fiance.¬† I felt betrayed.¬† I felt angry.¬† I felt afraid.¬† I was just coming to the realization that, even though I felt powerless, I was the one who controlled my life.¬† Lemonade¬†spoke to all that betrayal, anger, and fear.¬† It let me know I would make it through and be a stronger woman in the end.

In “Sandcastles”, Beyonc√© sings:

Dishes smashed on my counter

From our last encounter

Pictures snatched out the frame

Bitch I scratched out your name

And your face

What is it about you

That I can’t erase

When every promise don’t work out that way

Her voice breaks at, “What is it about you that I can’t erase?” and it was like she read my heart and turned my deepest feelings into song.¬† I wanted to forget my ex so bad–because he hurt me¬†so bad–but he still haunted me.

Lemonade was my strength.  Even today, every time a song from the album comes on, I stop and listen.

 

(Special thanks to Eli W. for inspiring this series!)