Music moves us in a way that nothing else can, and the lyrics are the poetry that inspire us in our daily lives. How many times have you listened to a song, let those words seep into your very being, and thought to yourself, “This is about me. I’m going to live my life like that.”
But before you go reinventing your wardrobe to pure argyle and deleting every name starting with “T” from your contacts, you should consider that the guy spinning that lyrical poetry at you probably drowned in his own vomit.
Here’s the thing: musicians are notoriously unstable people. And while November Rain is real pretty, you might want to think twice before deciding to live your life via the stylings of someone with both musical talent and a borderline personality disorder.
When you’re down and out, it’s incredibly easy to be seduced by words that hang so passionately from a guitar string. “Fuckin, Fightin, it’s all the same.” But you have to remember to ask, “Really Bradley Nowell? Because you OD’ed in like 1996.”
Listening to song lyrics is kind of like when your friends meet that one, really unhinged uncle. He’s really energetic and interesting, and they’re drawn to every passionate and compelling dissertation he spouts on your Grandma’s back porch. But when they go, “Dude, your uncle is so cool!” you have to be like, “Yeah…don’t listen to anything he says. He’s been kicked out of rehab like six times.”
If you are facing a crossroads in your life, I suggest reading a book. Preferably something authored by a PhD. Maybe something involving clinical research involving whatever it is you’re going through. Maybe therapy is a good idea, too.
Music is good. It’s good for exorcising those demons when you need to. But it’s not exactly sound life-lessons to live by. Because while I like a good beat and a rippin’ guitar, I’m not interested in a heroine problem, a gambling problem, or being suddenly jailed and impoverished for tax evasion.