The Soundtrack of your Life, Part 2: a song for a feeling

To continue building “The Soundtrack of your Life”, I asked people which song they linked to various feelings, because we all know music has the magical power to express your own feelings better than you can do yourself. 



Have you never heard a song and thought “this song makes me happy”? Or when you were in a bad mood, have you ever realized how a song you heard a couple of days before corresponded perfectly to what you were feeling? Music is strongly related to emotions and sometimes you don’t even realise it. 

So, once again, I wondered: what are the songs people think about when they feel a certain way? In this second part of “The Soundtrack of your Life”, I wanted to show you which songs people choose, why they choose them and, maybe, make you feel a little something by hearing them too. 


A song for positive feelings 


I wanted to start this article with positive feelings. Talking about songs for when you feel good, Anaïs (22, France) chose “Grace Kelly” by Mika, while Raine (14, India) picked out “Heartbreak Weather” by Niall Horan because they said it “feels peppy”. Tyler (17, Germany) chose “In the Heights”, the opening number of the eponymous musical, because it is upbeat. Chloé (22, France) told me about “Enfance 80” by Videoclub because it’s about refusing to think about the future in order to completely live the instant. 

Then I asked about love songs. Illeana (23, France) picked “You’re Still the One” by Shania Twain because she thought it was “one of the best romantic songs of all times”.

Abby (18, Germany) explained that she thought about “Early Sunset over Monroeville” by My Chemical Romance: “it reminds me how I learned to waltz to the song.”, when Nox (15, Turkey) told us about “Dazed & Confused” by Ruel, because their crush showed them the song. Chloé (22, France) chose “Love like you”, a Steven Universe Ending, because of the story “about someone who wants to learn to love themselves for the loved one.”.

Have you ever wanted to feel like the main character of your own brilliant show? If yes, you should find a song for this feeling. Bear (15, Australia) chose “Ship in a Bottle” by Steffan (Fin) Argus because it makes them feel like they are the captain of their own ship. Júlia (26, Brazil) mentioned “Believer” by Imagine Dragons: “I’ve always had to fight my own battles, and never stopped believing I’m capable of winning all of them. I’m the master of my sea.”.

Morgan (26, United States) explained how “Fly me to the Moon” by Frank Sinatra made her feel like she was in a movie: “everything is so cinematic and magical, like love is right around the corner if I just dance along the sidewalk.”.

There’s a difference between being the main character and being a star, and for the latter category, Christelle (48, France) mentioned “Inner Smile” by Texas, when Lou Ann (23, France) favoured “Ultraluminary” by Philippa Soo.

Illeana (23, France) seemed very passionate about “The Best of Both World” by Hannah Montana: “How can we not feel like a star? We all want to grab a brush or a remote control and sing along”. True. Slightly different, Tyler (17, Germany) mentioned “How Bad Can I Be” in The Lorax because it makes him feel like “committing crime and destroying capitalism, and that’s nice”. Honestly, why not? 


A song for negative feelings


Because I couldn’t avoid talking about negative feelings, I asked people what their songs were for when they feel sad. Morgan (26, United States) and Raine (14, India) both chose songs that break their heart, with “Rivers of Tears” by Eric Clapton for the former and “The Fault in our Stars” by Troye Sivan for the latter. 

Then I got songs that make them cry by people who need this to exteriorise their feelings: “Tragédie” by Mrs Yéyé for Chloé (22, France) and “Die a Little” by Yungblud for Kerry (17, Scotland). Tyler (17, Germany) also chose a song that makes him cry because he relates to the heavy themes addressed in the lyrics of “Cigarettes & Saints” by The Wonder Years

Annie (18, England) picked “Ramblings of a Lunatic” by Bears in Trees, which they find comforting and “very therapeutic”: “I can relate to a lot of the lyrics. That makes it validating and reminds me that it’s okay to feel bad, but also that it can get better.”.

Sometimes you’re sad because you’re missing someone. On this topic, Bear (15, Australia) chose “The Moss” by Cosmo Sheldrake because it reminds them of their friends. Júlia (26, Brazil) decided to tell me about “No Dia Em Que Saí de Casa” by Zezé Di Camargo & Luciano: “it reminds me of my mom because I’m really far from home, but I’ll always have somewhere to go back to”. 

On this positive aspect, Kerry mentioned “Hey There Delilah” by Plain White T’s because “no matter what, we can find a way to see each other even if it seems difficult.”.

Nox (15, Turkey) and Tyler (17, Germany) chose deeper aspects of this feeling. Nox chose “Letdown” by Nothing, Nowhere “because it’s about messing up and when I miss someone it’s mostly because I messed up stuff”. Tyler decided on “Snail” by Cavetown and Chloe Moriondo: “it makes me miss my childhood self, without the stress of school, adulthood and identity, a life without worry, just being able to be a kid again”.

Being misunderstood is less addressed in songs than heartbreaks or losses are, so I wanted to know if people had songs for this feeling too. Chloé (22, France) gave Mrs Yéyé’s name, saying that “she puts words where I don’t have any”. Ella (18, United States) chose “Me and My Husband” by Mitski and Meli (22, France) mentioned “Never too Late” by Three Days Grace.

Raine (14, India) and Tyler (17, Germany) both picked songs to scream on, the first with “I’m not Okay (I promise)” by My Chemical Romance and the second with “Kick Me” by Sleeping with Sirens because it is a good way to let the pressure down. 

On the contrary, Morgan (26, United State) preferred “Hellrap” by Ghostemane: “If I feel misunderstood, I’m just going to embrace my weirdness with a shrug,” she explained. It is another way to deal with the feeling, and definitely not less effective. 


A song for when you want to feel something 


When you’re looking for a special feeling, music can help you. I asked people what song they listened to when they wanted to feel better. Annie (18, England) mentioned Bears in Trees again with “Cobwebs”: “This is just a really great song to scream along to and let everything out.” Abby (18, Germany) and Kerry (17, Scotland) also chose a song from the band that calls itself a “dirtbag boy band” from South London: “It Gets Better” (which Raine already mentioned in Part 1).

“The Village” by Wrabel is Tyler’s (17, Germany) comfort song, for very personal reasons: “It’s from when I came to terms with being trans, it makes me feel validated and better”. Anaïs (22, France) preferred to find comfort in her childhood song “Tous les Cris les SOS” by Daniel Balavoine. 

Talking about childhood, which songs did people choose for when they want to feel young? Lou Ann (23, France) simply said that a Disney playlist does the job, when Christelle (48, France) chose “Iron Lion Zion” by Bob Marley and Ella (18, United States) decided on “Steal my Girl” by One Direction.

For most people, their childhood’s songs make them feel young. That’s why Malva (21, France) mentioned “Danza Kuduro” by Lucenzo and Tyler (17, Germany) chose “Ich bin Ich” by Rosenstolz. Abby (18, Germany) chose “Complicated” by Avril Lavigne: “It makes me feel like I am in my dad’s backseat, not understanding a lot of English and singing absolute gibberish”. 

Whether you have a good or bad feeling, you can always find some song to express it; building the soundtrack of your life. What do you think about all these songs? What are your own songs that help you relate to these feelings? Let us know in the comment section! 



Laurine Tiran
Laurine Tiran

I'm a French student doing a Master's degree in International Politics at the University of Toulon, France.

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