Tunes that sum up our current experience, bringing comfort back into our lives
There are multiple ways people are finding solace in this uncertain time, and one of those is through music. The California Aggie asked UC Davis students to pick a song that described their time in the era of the COVID-19 crisis, distilling their emotions and desires into one essential melody.
Maya Barak, a fourth-year international relations major, chose “Holy Shit” by Father John Misty. She said it embodies the current state of unrest, attempting to find a balance in a paradoxical world.
“It’s always been a cathartic listen, but in these times of uncertainty and misconception, the lyrics become even more impactful,” she said. “It basically lists off a bunch of paradoxes…[and in the end], he asks if maybe ‘love is just an economy based on resource scarcity, what I fail to see is what’s that got to do with you and me.’ He is questioning where love fits into the equation in all the [uncertainty], and thereby he also puts love at the top of the list of human priorities that tends to get disenfranchised.”
Love fits into how coronavirus has impacted our social spheres, shifting how separation has left us to value the connections we have with one another.
“Coronavirus is giving us space to appreciate the love that we give for what it is,” Barak said. “Rather than overpowering it with the [fear] that comes with the outside world.”
Tomer Fidelman, a fourth-year economics major, chose “It’s a Jungle Out There” by Randy Newman, a song that was also famously used in the Monk TV series.
“There’s nothing substantially poetic about the song,” he said. “It blatantly lists out apprehensive feelings regarding things that are commonplace in our world. Maybe we should be cautious about what we constantly interact with. There’s scary and problematic issues around that don’t subside without deliberate action. Nowadays, it reminds me that if it’s a jungle out there, maybe it’s actually pretty nice inside.”
These two songs reflect peoples’ current environments: simultaneously looking for connection while also recognizing obstacles arising outside. This confusion of emotions manifests itself in music, a constant comfort during uncertain times. As the environment becomes more confusing, there remains a kernel of truth in these age-old songs, trying to find balance in an unbalanced world.
Claire Ongaro, a fourth-year communications and design major, found that “Sometimes” by H.E.R. is a reflective representation of this era.
“It’s saying how sometimes things just don’t go your way, so right now it’s super relatable as COVID-19 has taken away, canceled or postponed so many plans,” she said. “But also it’s relatable as a graduating senior and not having nearly anything figured out! It’s comforting to listen to. If this artist is expressing how she feels like she’s drifting with no direction, probably lots of other people feel like that too.”
Written by: Athena Aghighi — firstname.lastname@example.org