Headphones in…

Before I was ~cultured~, the only iTunes playlist that got any attention was, undeniably, my Taylor Swift collection. In between sessions of fangirling and building my shrine, I downloaded endless hours the pop-country crossover. It was part of my identity. I was Taylor Swift, Taylor Swift was me.

Let me set the scene for you and really let you grasp the scale of my dedication. I turned my room into a photo gallery, pasted her outfits on my mirror for inspiration, left sleepaway camp for her concert (1 of many), memorized her addresses (and took pictures outside when I visited), had fan pages, and blocked close friends on social media for criticizing her. Honestly, this list could go on, but let’s leave me with some dignity.

It wasn’t just her that I loved, it was the way her music made me feel that I fell in love with. Knowing all the words to a song is exciting. Knowing all the words to all the songs on every album is a sense of community. And it wasn’t until my senior year of high school, 6.5 years after the obsession started, that I realized other artists could make me feel the same way.

Discovering new sounds was incredible. Landmark Music Festival was a huge turning point for me, as was growing to love MC and the music he listened to. I’ve found some of my favorite music since then: Houndmouth, Rainbow Kitten Surprise, HAIM, Lorde. My transition from Swift to the streets (this is a reference to the college essay I wrote on her) marked my *true* maturity.

So while walking the Dover Downs at Firefly (a music festival) this past weekend the question that caught my eye was “what does music do for you?” And it took me a hot second to figure it out, but I think music has helped me grow and change and seek new opportunities. It’s taught me that you can always find a new passion, and it doesn’t have to replace an old one.

I’ll always be willing to trade an arm and a leg for another chance to stand stage side at Taylor’s concerts. It’s part of who I am and what I love. I just don’t need to wear an entire outfit with her face on it and talk to pictures of her anymore.

Wow, look at all this adultness. If you knew me between 2011-2015 you probably thought this day would never come. Well, same.


Stuck in my head: Sober II (Melodrama) // Lorde
Snap it: Firefly Music Festival

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