Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Music: A balm for the craziness

Anxiety and Panic disorders seem to be more common every day. Is it that more people are being affected by these issues, or that we're talking about it more? I don't know the answer to that, but I have several friends who struggle with anxiety and I have my share as well. Today I read an interesting article about Jeff Tweedy, the lead singer of Wilco, and his panic disorder. This article from Rolling Stone was written a few years ago after Tweedy had gone to rehab for his addiction to prescription pills.

"For Tweedy, who tries to write and play music every day, one of the most difficult things about rehab, at first, was his loss of guitar privileges. (Because of possible suicide attempts, the hospital didn't want strings around.) Eventually, he was allowed to play during art-therapy classes. "The doctors told me, 'Your panic goes away completely when you play guitar,' " Tweedy says. "I guess my color changes, everything."

I've heard that his doctors actually concluded that music was a better remedy than anything else they gave him. I love that.

I certainly have times when music is the only thing that will calm me down. Like when I'm sitting in between two strangers on a bumpy airplane ride, or when something frustratingly tragic happens and nothing seems to make sense. Music.

Here are some songs I listen to often for calming down purposes. Because they move me and remind me of the bigger picture.

Jill Phillips- Everything
Pierce Pettis- Love Will Always Find its Way, Great Big World
Eva Cassidy- Fields of Gold
David Wilcox- What You Whispered
Sara Groves- Why it Matters
Tom Conlon- Wake Me

Chris Rice also recorded an instrumental record called "The Living Room Sessions" that has been a favorite of mine. It's all hymns on the piano and it feels peaceful to me.

What about you, what music or songs do you listen to as a kind of balm for the craziness?

P.S. Randy Elrod does this deal called Water Cooler Wednesday's and I am participating in it today with this blog. Check it out!


Audra Krell said...

Music is the only thing that calms me a lot of the time. Sara Groves "Amazing Grace" is what I fall asleep to every night, it is truly difficult if I hear it during the day, out in the world, because it completely soothes my soul and makes me very sleepy.

Ron Cervetti said...

Alli, Hi to you....this is Calais's dad!! Hope all is well! Ron

Lindsay Rae said...

for some reason holdovers from high school are my go tos...jars of clay "like a child" and superchick "help me out God" come to mind as well as Sara Groves' "maybe there's a loving God" and Don/Waterdeep "lonely sometimes" and, well, basically all of "you were at the time for love" or "sink or swim"

Melissa said...

I know this sounds really cliche, but when I am anxious I like to listen to "You and the Evening Sky". That has a very relaxing tone to it...or maybe it's just your voice!

chip g said...

I have a similar list I compiled recently that helps remind me of what is important and forces me to refocus from my all-too-worldly priorities:

Seize the Day--Carolyn Arends
Legacy --Nichole Nordeman
Just One More Thing -- Sara Groves
Blessed Be Your Name --(I like the Newsboys version)
The Church -- Derek Webb
What I thought I wanted -- Sara Groves