Why Music Moves You
Heal Your Life Blog
Why Music Moves You
“Some kinds of music dissipate in seconds. Other kinds remain a lifetime. Stored in the limbs, in the brain. Or even the heart.”
— Derrick De Kerckhove
You all know Susan Boyle. This woman needs no introduction. She touched the hearts of people around the world and became an overnight sensation after her first appearance on America’s Got Talent. I never even watch this show, but I raced home to see the last few minutes of the finale when she sang “Wild Horses.” And like you and millions of others, I pre-ordered her new CD on Amazon, which is being released this week.
What is it about Susan Boyle’s voice that gives me goose bumps? Each time I listen to that woman sing, my eyes fill up with tears. I tried to think back when other songs have jolted my emotions in the same way. When “Annie’s Song” first came out by John Denver, I’d hear it over the car radio and couldn’t contain my emotions. A few years back, I watched Liza Minnelli singing “New York, New York” during a television special celebrating the Big Apple. When she made circular motions with her hand as if she was revving up an engine just before she belted out the final verse, a rush of goosebumps were headed my way!
Something similar happened when I saw Dreamgirls on stage. One of my friends was invited to review the play for a local magazine and she had an extra ticket—a third row seat. I had no idea what I was in for. I didn’t know a thing about the play or the caliber of music I was about to experience. But when Jennifer Holliday burst head-on into “And I Am Telling You” with every ounce of her soul, I could feel the entire room being lifted to another place, another level of consciousness. The entire audience felt it as they hooted and howled and danced in unison to the music. Before I knew it, I was swept away, too, as I leapt from my seat cheering madly with the rest.
Thanks to YouTube, I can go back and listen to these songs again just as I heard them the first time. And I get teary-eyed every time!
Author Candice Pert (remember this hip neuroscientist in What the Bleep?) says that we feel this way because we’re “hardwired for bliss and feeling good.”
In her book Everything You Need to Know to Feel Go(o)d, Candace explains that the vibrational frequency of the musical notes sends messages to our body’s receptors and sets in motion all kinds of cellular activity. “That’s how music can heal, interacting directly with your molecules of emotion to charge you with energy, get your juices flowing, and make you feel good,” she says.
“We don’t just hear with our ears, but we “hear” with every receptor on every cell in our body. We’re literally alive with the sound of music!”
But going even one step further, Candace says that when we reach this state of healing bliss, we are making a connection with something much deeper. That’s because Candace believes that “feeling good and feeling God are one and the same.”
And when I hear a heartfelt songs by Susan Boyle or Jennifer Holliday, I believe it, too.
Best Thing I Read Last Night:
“I never gave up hope of playing Effie. They`d talk to me and then look at other people and then come back to me. . .but I always had the faith.”
— Jennifer Hudson
Something I Didn’t Know…
After seeing the stage and film version of Dreamgirls, I just yearned to see both powerhouse singers, Broadway’s Jennifer Holliday and American Idol’s Jennifer Hudson, together on one stage. My dream came true when I found this video on YouTube. I dare you to watch this without goosebumps.
— Donna Abate