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Music is a gift. Like any gift, it can be embraced with joy and exuberance. It can provide comfort and warmth. A gift is a measure of thoughtfulness, that someone cares enough to package something so personal and meant specifically for you. Music too it seems, for so many people, can come across in the same way. It’s meant for you. It’s personal. This was my reaction recently after stumbling across this Elvis video on youtube called “If I Can Dream”.
This is an amazing song by an amazing artist. The lyrics, the music, the voice, and the performance are all spectacular. Although I was stunned by the performance, it was my emotional reaction which struck me the most. It was not too long ago that I had a similar feeling with Grace’s original AGT audition and her ACL1 performance. More recently the Vandervault initial trailer for the Grace Vanderwaal documentary film also had me stirring at the thought that so many people care so intensely for the same young artist.
Moreover, it was the memory of my Mother crying while watching this Elvis performance upon hearing of his death in 1977. I was 10-years-old, and I only now realize how deep-seated this memory was. The artist that meant so much to her was suddenly gone, but certainly not the power of the song. Without a shadow of doubt it was the power of Love at work. Love my mother had for Elvis and his music, and the love I had for my mother and seeing the pain she was going through at the time.
I believe Grace has had the same emotional impact on people. People young and old from all cultures have embraced her as a terrific singer and songwriter. I know that there are bonds of love being created by Grace and her fans. Also, consider lasting memories of that first concert for those same young fans as a shared experience with their parents. They too will look back fondly someday at these moments and recall them with overwhelming emotion. It’s simply overpowering.
When done right, that’s what Music should be…a direct connection to your emotions. A great songwriter can capture their own spirit through their lyrics and music and package it as a musical message. A gift directly for your soul. The memories that these types of songs can create and emotions they can evoke are high-water marks in the soundscape of your life. Never forgotten and forever treasured.
I sometimes think of these memories and emotional reactions as living dreams. They are blurred by time and distance but no less powerful. They shake you from your very foundations like the dream that wakes you with a shocking start. Graces’ first performance of “I Don’t Like You” left me feeling much the same way. It’s a powerful song musically and lyrically. I can only imagine the impact left to those who attended the live show. Can Grace’s music stand the test of time? I think there is no doubt that it most certainly will.