Behind the Lyrics - Nada Surf: "Always Love"


(Photo Credit - Annie Dressner)


Music can soothe the soul, but also, it is one of the best ways to send a message. Music doesn't judge; music doesn't shame. It is in tuned to humans as our heartbeat. One of the reasons music can make so much progress in discussing difficult topics is because of that connection with every person, but also, the songwriter is already being honest and putting their heart out there. A true musician is creating songs to make music, to further understanding. So, if you are stuck with writing, begin thinking about something that really triggered an emotion in you. Use the music and words to process that feeling. A great example is the focus of this article --


"Always Love" Nada Surf "To make a mountain of Your life is just a choice But I never learned enough To listen to the voice that told me Always love Hate will get you every time Always love Don't wait til the finish line Slow demands come 'round Squeeze the air and keep the rest out It helps to write it down Even when you then cross it out But always love Hate will get you every time Always love Even when you wanna fight Self-directed lives I want to know what it'd be like to Aim so high above Any card that you've been dealt, you Always love Hate will get you every time Always love Hate will get you I've been held back by something Yeah You said to me quietly on the stairs I've been held back by something Yeah You said to me quietly on the stairs You said Hey, you good ones Hey, you good ones To make a mountain of Your life is just a choice But I never learned enough To listen to the voice that told me Always love Hate will get you every time Always love Hate will get you I've been held back by something Yeah You said to me quietly on the stairs I've been held back by something Yeah You said to me quietly on the stairs You said Hey, you good ones Hey, you good ones Hey, you good ones"

This song is processing how often in life we overcomplicate things in life. If we choose love more often, the "choice" would be so much simpler. For example, if you were caught lying, the choice of love would be to confess. However, we are so worried about the complications of admitting a misdeed, that we will do anything in our power to lose our character, which only marks it worse. This song isn't "preachy". No, what sets it apart and makes it successful in its message. It makes it clear that the narrator is not "better" than listeners by saying, "But I never learned enough To listen to the voice that told me". I am a firm believer that whatever happens has a positive to it. For example, my father died when I was seventeen. At the time, I could not see anything good about the situation. My father and I were very close. I was devasted. But then, years later, I had a student lose a parent. Because of my experience, I was able to help this kiddo get back on track. I share this because the importance of writing a song like this - with a strong life lesson - is you must ONLY talk about things you know. YOU have a message no one else has. Focus on that. Help your fellow human beings. Finally, it is important to remember that many people have been shamed and put-down. Use your experiences and medium to raise others up. This songs repeats and ends with "Hey, you good ones". Remind those who listen that it is our pasts that make our ability to connect and make the world better a reality. Raise each other up! Music is incredible, isn't it? Until next time.

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