Whether it’s Phoebe Bridgers at 11:30 PM, Kendrick Lamar at 4:15 PM just to make it through that last set of sprints, or when trying to get that last ounce of studying in, music is there for students. In the age of Tikok audios and Spotify playlists, music is seemingly everywhere. Mundane things, such as walking in the hallways or cleaning your room, now have soundtracks unlike any other.
It feels as if every other day, someone somewhere has released another song. The “For You” page on Tiktok is filled with new artists promoting their music. Years ago, artists were untouchable beings on a pedestal. Now, they could be the kids in your fifth-period English class. Furthermore, music isn’t something you need a physical copy of to enjoy. Practically anyone can find a song within seconds and have immediate access to it. With free platforms such as Youtube and Spotify, you have the ability to listen to any music by any artist at any time. The accessibility of music is a major aspect as to how it connects people all over the world.
Music pulls us out of the dark and allows us to sit in heavy feelings. The ability to have all of our deepest thoughts and anxieties put out onto the table but still safe within the security of our headphones is a strange and beautiful paradox. To find safety in a song is to find safety in a person you will never know. Music crystalizes the abstract messiness of being a teen and student in an ever-changing world. It provides hope when there is little, and it provides validation for situations that feel too hyper-specific for another human’s understanding. Music permits us to be vulnerable amongst ourselves.
The shared experience of finding solace in a song and in artists can also create some of the most meaningful friendships. Finding an artist that someone else also resonates with on a deeply personal level allows for a connection built on an unspoken knowledge of almost-hidden emotions. While everyone’s experiences are different, finding yourself represented amongst your peers can be quite liberating. There is comfort in knowing that on some level, even if it’s only within lyrics, they understand you.
Music can be a very vulnerable thing, but it can also just be fun. Creating a collaborative Spotify playlist for your team brings joy to long bus rides and physically impossible practices. Music can similarly make classes more engaging and mornings more energizing. A teacher saying, “You can use headphones,” is single handedly one of the best moments of an otherwise boring day. What used to be “busy work” has now become something more personal and enjoyable, solely because you have the opportunity to listen to whatever song or artist you desire.
The versatility of music is what makes it matter immensely to teens and students alike. Such versatility allows for an even more personal element past simply resonating with a song. You have the ability to choose the genre, the song, the artist, the order of the songs, and even the image and description for your playlist. It’s all up to you. There is quite literally a song for every situation; you just need to look for it.