Songs That Hurt to Listen To...

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seoulsearch

OutWrite Trouble
May 23, 2009
13,024
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#1
Hey Everyone,

I actually had the idea for this thread churning around in my head for a while, but since its topic literally just happened to me 5 minutes ago, this seems like a pretty good time to post it.

What songs come around that are actually painful for you to listen to?

I don't know if anyone else does this, but I purposely load my music playlist with a couple of songs that I used to like, but now actually hurt to listen to for various reasons. I do this because, 1. I feel like it's one of God's ways of making sure I'm not always choosing just the things that I like, as we are often called to do things we don't want in this life, and 2. I believe it's one of the ways God tests my heart and shows me its condition.

Most of the "painful" songs I load onto my playlist have a very strong negative emotional association for me, and so the song in and of itself becomes a litmus test as to how far (or how little) I've moved on, and what feelings or reactions I need to ask God for more help with.

One of the best examples in my playlist just cued up a few minutes ago -- and as soon as I heard that oh-so-familiar instrumental beginning, I immediately pushed the "Skip" button.

Obviously, I'm still attached to some negative emotions that this song always brings me back to, though on its own, it's a beautiful song, and one that I liked when it first came out. However, over time, this song became a reminder of the one of the most difficult times in my life, and sometimes, even just the introduction brings some of those feelings jolting right back.

It literally hurts to listen to, and I find myself asking God if I'll always feel this way, or if there's more work He's wanting to do that I have just been resisting.

Does anyone else have an experience like this as well?

* What songs do you find painful to listen to (if you'd like, feel free to name them or share a link), and, if you are wanting to share, why do these songs hurt?

* I know there could be other reasons a song is painful to listen to -- it might not be your style, or maybe it was a song someone else made you listen to even though you didn't like it. Feel free to list those kinds of reasons as well.

* Are there any songs that you couldn't listen to because of how much they hurt, but as time went on, God healed your heart, and you were able to start listening to, or liking them again? Or do you think these tunes will just always hurt?

I have actually had a few times where a song that always used to "hurt" before actually stopped hurting, and I took it as a sign that it was time to thank God for getting me through that time in my life, and, let "my heart go on."

What have your experiences been like?

May God bring us all to a time of peace and rest in His goodness during these very trying times!


One of my personal most pain-inducing songs is this:






How about you?
 

phil36

Senior Member
Feb 12, 2009
7,553
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#2
Ahh music, it's very powerful in controlling people emotions. Playing in bands for over 30 years (started when I was 15) I have seen how a band can control a crowd by what they play and when in the set they play it.

Anyhow, there are definitely songs when I hear then take me back to a certain time/place/situation that can bring back fond memories some can bring back bad memories. For me I don't listen to those songs that bring any negative feelings as they don't help, or i try my best not to.

So to answer your question yes there are a couple of songs that used bring back not so good memories so I stopped listening to them. I find life can be hard enough without putting myself through more (all in the past now).

Another good post SoulS, It reminds us how powerful music is in evoking human emotions. Maybe we should pay a lot more attention to what we listen to. (I've had to do that myself).
 

Rosemaryx

Senior Member
May 3, 2017
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#3
Before I was born again , my music was all love songs , even when I was single lol...
Today , I cannot even listen to any of them , they draw me back to the darkness when I was living in sin , when I was in long term relationships that were awful , and broke my heart...

Today , that music just reminds me of who I was without Christ , and if I hear these songs anywhere , I will stick my fingers in my ears and shout like John Bunyan did " Life life eternal life " and move away from the music , because just as you said about the cords being played before the song starts , the power of the music gets into one deeply , and that brings me down instantly...

I take note from the Word , be careful what we listen to...
Sorry if I rambled...
...xox...
 

cinder

Senior Member
Mar 26, 2014
3,818
1,891
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#4
There are plenty of songs that have specific memories / people associated with them for me, but I don't think there are many that seem painful (melancholy or nostalgic sure but not really painful). Hopefully that means I've had a pretty good life or am quite reconciled with my past. Could also mean that I've got a thick wall around my heart and am emotionally untouchable.

As a humorous aside, these days I find myself singing that Pete's Dragon song (the one about I love you too after they eat the apples early in the movie) to my dog fairly frequently. Maybe it's because the dragon part can easily be reinterpreted as "Woof woof woof woof woof woof, woof woof woof woof woof."
 

TheIndianGirl

Well-known member
Nov 22, 2019
1,263
893
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#6
Music draws a lot of emotion from me too, and mostly negative (nostalgia, sadness, etc.). When I was in middle school/high school, I listened to radio for sleep/bedtime. Once in a while, I happen to hear those songs and I think of those years. I listened to a lot of top 40/club type music during college and 20s, but they also bring some sadness now and those songs remind of people who are now distant/out of my life, or of my youth. Christian songs also make me sad, especially hymns. So, I think I'm overall very sensitive to music. I also have the habit of playing songs on repeat, even the "sad" songs which I don't think is healthy. Nowadays I do not listen to music and have not for a couple of years (except the songs at church). I have the TV on in the background which I think is better.
 

17Bees

Senior Member
Oct 14, 2016
1,086
646
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#7
@seoulsearch - you picked a song that is going to find pain. Somehow or other, joy, pain, temptation, anger, angst, fear, first love, tragedy, you name it, they're all there. You're going to find a bit of your life in its lyrics somewhere along the line. This is actually a better question for @Lynx. He plants about lyrics like Johnny Appleseed.

@cinder, I always thought the dragon was a bit..... no... a lot on the heavy side. To fly, at least. I know a camera adds a few pounds, but..... how many were there? On the screen play from Pete's Dragon there's "Nobody Knows" how to say good bye, how to get back home, and how the story ends. This I can relate. This, I've seen.

But in honor of the dragon who off screen can't get off the ground without hollywood's aircraft wire, "I Love You Too" Cinder and Seoul and Lyrical Lynx!
 

cinder

Senior Member
Mar 26, 2014
3,818
1,891
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#8
@cinder, I always thought the dragon was a bit..... no... a lot on the heavy side. To fly, at least. I know a camera adds a few pounds, but..... how many were there? On the screen play from Pete's Dragon there's "Nobody Knows" how to say good bye, how to get back home, and how the story ends. This I can relate. This, I've seen.
I agree. The dragon was completely aerodynamically incorrect. But I think it was just because he kept his real wings invisible all the time so he didn't look too scary.
 

Magenta

Senior Member
Jul 3, 2015
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#9
I love music :) Each generation has exceptionally talented musical
artists who are like spokespeople for their peers, and their music
becomes the soundtrack of many lives, especially while those
listeners are young, and these songs always seem to carry special
weight as the years go by, even if our music tastes greatly change
over time. There are certain genres I have just never really cared for,
and others that hold a primary place in my heart. I find it interesting
that some characterize certain genres as evil, even if and when they
are singing praises to our Lord :unsure: As to songs causing me pain?
Hmmm. Some songs make me cry, but I do not consider this a bad
thing, partially because as I age and become more acquainted with
how evil humanity really can be, with an attendant increase in cynicism
and feelings of being jaded, it is nice to know my heart still holds certain
sentiments in high enough esteem to move me to tears even though the
idealism and naiveté of my youth are greatly diminished. Music can be,
as others have made mention, a master at moving emotions, and sometimes
I find those movements very informative, perhaps especially from a nostalgic
point of view, in how certain songs affect me.


Now with most everything being online and at our fingertips, it is so easy to revisit
these songs of my youth, and also read up on the band members and their histories,

which again I find not just informative on many fronts, but somehow fills in gaps I did
not even know were there. It helps personalize it for me to a greater degree. I have been
watching Mindhunters the last few days, which is set in the mid-to-late seventies, and at
one point, a TOTO song was playing in the main character's car as they were driving.
Of course I had to check to make to make sure this was a correct time-line, and then
got majorly side-tracked reading up on this band and watching videos of them in concert.
And oh, yes, one of their songs brought tears to my eyes: Africa. This concert was recorded
on March 17th 2018 at the Ziggo Dome in Amsterdam; I was going to post it yesterday
for @kinda for the extended drum solo starting @ 4:38 ~



The funny thing for me is that this song is not particularly connected to any specific major
event in my life. It was, however, during a time of great change in my life, as I had just moved
out west and my life was in constant upheaval and turmoil from one source or another, which
was balanced somewhat by my being steadily employed in the profession of my choice :)


Other artists that meant a great deal to me at that time I hardly listen to any more...
and when I do, they fail to move me in the way I remember being moved all those
years ago. Rickie Lee Jones and Pat Benatar come to mind in this regard. I can still
listen to their music and marvel at their proficiency and talent as musicians, singers,
and writers, but other than that something seems to be missing. Conversely, others
that I may have really liked in my youth have taken on even more meaning as I age.


I experienced this phenomena watching a Tom Petty video...


I wrote this in another thread about this song and band a while back:

Hard to believe Tom Petty has been gone for over two and a half years now :cry:

I love watching the looks that pass between the members as they perform this song,
showing their obvious affection for each other. Some of them were together for about
40 years. And that cute little shrug that Tom gives after saying "Watch her walk" @ 2:14,
gosh, they are all so young and beautiful. And Tom chewing gum while singing LOL.
Way to go, Tom. Thanks for all the music and memories. R.I.P. with much love :love:


When someone very close to me passed away suddenly almost thirty years ago, this
song later really helped me grieve; even though it was on the debut studio album by
American singer-songwriter Natalie Merchant, released on June 20, 1995, which was
two and a half years after the fact of my loved one's death, it made me cry buckets:



Another very special song for me connected with this person's passing was this one:


Though that is the extended version and not the original ;)

There are many songs and artists that have held their place in my heart for me.
Artists such as The Moody Blues, Dire Straits, The Cowsills, Santana, and even
Richard Harris of MacArthur Park
fame :D

Far too many to mention or post here, and yet I cannot leave off without a nod to this one:


This song, as beautiful as it is, does make me sad, because it is inextricably
linked with the time when I was getting together with the man I married...
some of the most painful memories and biggest failures of my life, made
more bearable through the magic of music.
 

TheIndianGirl

Well-known member
Nov 22, 2019
1,263
893
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#10
I've realized is that listening to most music brings me back to the past. I read people stop listening to "new" music at around 30, so I guess this makes sense.

Regardless of whether the past is happy or not so happy, I do not want to go back to those times, to the past, if that makes sense. Along the same lines, I would not want to live in the same neighborhood where I went to college as it would feel that I have not "moved on." I have a few songs which were favorites at that time, but now those songs bring back memories which I would not want to revisit. I guess I don't mind listening to these songs once in a while, but I fear that I would get in the habit of playing those songs on repeat. When I was in college/and after, my friends and I would get ready together listening to Top 40 songs before heading out. Another example - I had this favorite song on repeat when I was applying to this internship, which is the best internship I've had. For awhile I listened to French top 40 songs and other foreign songs (even though I do not understand) since I lived abroad for slightly over a year. Even though all these are happy memories, I would not want to "go back" as I do not want to get stuck in the past. I think one reason I feel strongly this way is that I know depressed people who get stuck in the past through music (playing certain songs/artists on repeat), so I'm very vigilant about not being the same way. I believe if they stopped listening to music, they would be in a better place emotionally.
 

Lanolin

Well-known member
Dec 15, 2018
11,688
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#11
intersting topic seoul

I've just finished reading Mariah Carey's memoir, and was watching Mariah's world. she was very big in the 90s. Her first big hit was 'Vision of Love' and it blew everyone away.
I still like that song. she had a public breakdown in the late 90s and it was a painful time for her. sHe says music is her outlet and I agree, though I am nowhere near as musically talented so the only thing I do when Im having a tough time is write...poetry, stories, etc. My guitar I just sort of strum to other songs.
if Im low I just play a song like 'Under the bridge' or something and then I feel better.

I used to have a lot of music and play songs and albums from different artists all the time, but Ive mostly given them away. The only album I still have is Mariah Careys Christmas album!

I like 'all I want for christmas' and the carols on it, because they are about Jesus, especially Joy to the World.
In one she just gets hyped up about Jesus.

nowadays I mostly listen to childrens songs, like 'the wonky Donkey'
not nearly as painful because the wonky donkey, despite only having 3 legs and one eye. just gets on with it lol
 

seoulsearch

OutWrite Trouble
May 23, 2009
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#12
I'm really enjoying all the thought-provoking feedback people are providing...

@phil36 and @Rosemaryx, I think you made important points about having to be careful about what we listen to.

I can't say that I have an "official" eating disorder, as I've never been medically diagnosed, but I'm very open about the fact that I all too easily lean towards "disordered eating." Food is its own drug in and of itself.

I was going through an especially tough time in my life where this was really taking over, and there happened to be a popular song on the radio with lyrics that chanted, "more, more, more," which, at the time, is the exact same way I felt about certain foods. God convicted me to stop listening to that song (when I had a choice -- unfortunately, we often don't have one, such as at work,) because I believe He was trying to tell me that the lyrics were reinforcing my troubled feelings towards food.

This also made me think of Rosemary's post about listening to all love songs -- I have this hunch that the songs we listen to feed whatever we are most vulnerable to becoming addicted to. Whether it's romantic love, alcohol, drugs, drama, love relationships, sex... I often wonder how much healthier people would be if they were able to filter all those background messages out.

I know that for myself, I have to be careful with lyrics that say things such as, "I just can't get enough," "I need more," "More is never enough," etc., because it seems to shift my focus to the wrong things.

While I'll be the first to admit that it doesn't make the struggle go away, I have often wondered if people who feel that way about food would find themselves eating less (and maybe even losing some weight,) if they cut out any kind of message that keeps telling them, "I need more and I just can't get enough," day in and day out. I also wonder if it would help others with nearly any other addiction they might be facing, no matter what it is to.

@TheIndianGirl -- Thank you so much for your post -- I can relate to much of what you're saying. I've tried to "convert" to Christian music but find much of that problematic as well. For some reason, there are very few songs I like -- it's normal for me to sample 100 songs and maybe like only 1 -- and because of that, I either listen to the same songs I do like over and over, or else opt for playing podcasts/videos in the background instead.

Thanks for letting some of us know that it's ok that we might not be able to relate to music as well as others.

It's been very interesting to read people's thoughts on this (as well as the songs they share,) and I hope you all will continue! :)
 

Magenta

Senior Member
Jul 3, 2015
36,822
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#13
I've realized is that listening to most music brings me back to the past. I read
people stop listening to "new" music at around 30, so I guess this makes sense.
Nothing like having children to keep you tuned to new musicians ;)

What's really great is when some of these younger musicians help resurrect the
music of older musicians, and bring the magic of these artists to younger audiences.


Rob Thomas and Carlos Santana come to mind for this, with their hit song "Smooth."

It reminds me too, of one time when my daughter and I were driving somewhere
in my car many years ago, and a cover of Joni Mitchell's Big Yellow Taxi was playing
on the radio... well, my daughter was dumbfounded when I told her this "artist" had
not written this song, and that it was originally from my era, which is widely touted
as one of the most innovative and creative times for music of all more modern ages.


I think Rob Thomas is one exceptionally talented musician (y)

My daughter took me to see him in concert a few years ago...

Matchbox 20 (or Matchbox Twenty) formed in 1995 when I was 40 years old :D

And this song is from 1999 :)

 

Lanolin

Well-known member
Dec 15, 2018
11,688
4,225
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#14
Karen Carpenter was one of the first artists publically known to suffer from an eating disorder which was anorexia.
Her brother was also addicted to sleeping pills at one point (quaaludes). Karen had died by the time I was listening to music but her songs sort of haunted me for a while.

The Carpenters music was very hard for me to give up, but God convinced me that it wasnt healthy to be listening to them over and over (like rainy days and mondays) cos they are quite depressing. Now I like rainy days. Good for the garden! and Mondays arent too bad either. I get to work in a job I love on Mondays.

Again the only album I kept of theirs is their Christmas album lol.
 

seoulsearch

OutWrite Trouble
May 23, 2009
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#15
Karen Carpenter was one of the first artists publically known to suffer from an eating disorder which was anorexia.
Her brother was also addicted to sleeping pills at one point (quaaludes). Karen had died by the time I was listening to music but her songs sort of haunted me for a while.

The Carpenters music was very hard for me to give up, but God convinced me that it wasnt healthy to be listening to them over and over (like rainy days and mondays) cos they are quite depressing. Now I like rainy days. Good for the garden!

Again the only album I kept of theirs is their Christmas album lol.

"Top of the World" is one of the songs I always have on my playlist.

From what I've read, Karen's life sounded like one horrible tragedy after the other -- I certainly hope she was a Christian and has finally found peace and joy beyond this life.
 

seoulsearch

OutWrite Trouble
May 23, 2009
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#16
@seoulsearch - you picked a song that is going to find pain. Somehow or other, joy, pain, temptation, anger, angst, fear, first love, tragedy, you name it, they're all there. You're going to find a bit of your life in its lyrics somewhere along the line. This is actually a better question for @Lynx. He plants about lyrics like Johnny Appleseed.
It's definitely not the cheeriest of songs, that's for sure.

But the reason I always have to skip it is because it always makes me wonder what my ex-husband's life is like with his new wife and the kids they had (as I talk to inanimate objects sometimes to keep myself company), and how much happier he must be with her than with me.

Believe me, it's enough to make me want to throw myself off the edge of an ocean liner, and not because of some stupid diamond.

(Song cues up, first two notes...) SSSKKKIIIIPPP!!!
 

Lanolin

Well-known member
Dec 15, 2018
11,688
4,225
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#17
a cousin of mine passed away last year and it was DollY Partons 'I will always love you' played at her funeral.

I like Whitneys version too but Dollys original version was nice.

I dont know what song people would play at my funeral!
Children will probably find my CDs and put on wonky donkey...or 'its all about the books' which is. parody version of 'its all about the bass'

The people left behind will probably have to fight over my play list. Or put on a disco.
 

Magenta

Senior Member
Jul 3, 2015
36,822
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#18
Youtube also makes it fairly easy to find new, younger artists, some of whom
I like very much. Sometimes I will discover an artist from a show I am watching,
and youtube here, too, has many people commenting how such-and-such a show
brought them there to find out more about, and listen to, that song on the site.


I do not always need lyrics to be moved to tears, either.
Sometimes if there are lyrics, I cannot even understand them LOL.
Yet the music profoundly moves me never the less.
I suppose I would call such music achingly beautiful.
And I think it speaks to some part of me that seeks to find beauty
and harmony in a world that can also be very ugly and discordant.



As to modern praise and worship Christian music? I did not discover
that until I became a Christian, and by then I was in my 50th year of life,
and fell in love with it :D It does move me to tears at times, also :)
 

Lanolin

Well-known member
Dec 15, 2018
11,688
4,225
113
#19
hmm songs that make me want to die or definitely hurt my ears...

Billy ray cyrus Achy Breaky Heart


I wish there was a a way of turning off the music at the bookshop but apparently the boss paid lots of money to have the instore radio and sometimes they play the same songs over and over. (interspersed with ads about joining the loyalty club)

If I was DJ I would not have the same songs twice. although most of the time Im not paying attention to any of the songs and if I dont know them they are just kinda background noise. I couldnt tell you the lyrics to a lot of them now because a lot of singers dont sing clearly anymore so it sounds like when you speaking in unknown tongues. I have no idea what they are about.
 

seoulsearch

OutWrite Trouble
May 23, 2009
13,024
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#20
hmm songs that make me want to die or definitely hurt my ears...

Billy ray cyrus Achy Breaky Heart

If I was DJ I would not have the same songs twice.
And now I seriously want to have a party in which Lanolin acts as the DJ while playing every best-known ear-bleeding line dance song on repeat!

You know, songs like the aformentioned "Achy Breaky Heart," "The Macarena," and "The Chicken Dance."

Hmm... There's probably some legal contract stating that The Chicken Dance can only be played if a wedding has first taken place.

So... Which two lucky CC'er's are going to volunteer to get married so we can get this party started??! :LOL: