Trends come and go as the seasons change. For many young people today, making music is the extension of themselves to foster a connection otherwise unattainable. For others, it merely is a hobby or popular trend.
The dictionary describes music as the art of ordering tones and melodies to express ideas or emotions. For some students, this art of expression has continued to grow far past a trend or hobby. On the campus of West Virginia State University and many campuses around the nation, students are discovering an outlet through musical expression.
The discovery could be the result of a societal spike in awareness of the availability of the outlet. Popular social media platforms have expanded to provide influential artists and producers with the means to share their creative processes. Artists share their art in hopes of building and inspiring connections around the world.
The effects of exposure to different kinds of music at different stages in life will vary from person to person. However, these effects are scientific fact. For example, doctors often tell parents to play Mozart and Beethoven for newborns while they sleep to calm them and even promote brain development.
“I really noticed an interest for music in elementary school,” WVSU spring 2019 graduate Jae’von McClain said. “Music has been around me since I can remember. It’s been a major influence in my life and has helped me through a lot of hard times.”
WVSU senior Dylan Turner said: “What draws me to music is the feeling that it evokes when you’re listening. The way music makes me feel depends on what I’m doing, and that determines what I’m going to listen to.”
WVSU junior Noah Phillips said: “When listening to music, it gives me a sense of comfort. This sense of comfort comes from the wide range of music that can match my emotions at the time.”
Phillips said the wide range of emotion available through music is what drew him to start producing his own.
“Creating my own music will allow me to show how music has affected me over the years and will also give me an opportunity to see how my music innovations will affect not only the world but more importantly those around me,” Phillips said.
When asked specifically about the personal effects of expression through music, McClain said, “I feel like it frees me and my inner thoughts in a healthy way. It’s an outlet. I’m able to express myself and my feelings when just talking about certain situations isn’t enough.”
McClain and Turner both use musical expression as an outlet.
Phillips takes his description a step further, saying, “The music I’m involved in makes me feel as if I’m making my mark on something that I have grown with over the years as everyone in the world has.”
McClain, Phillips and Turner agree musical expression is a highly effective tool that provides artists the ability to communicate emotions and ideas, as well as provide a platform capable of creating deep-rooted impressions in current and future societies around the world.