ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Healing Songs

Updated on December 2, 2015

Universal Language Speaks Directly to the Soul

I am 12 years old again, sitting on green shag carpet in my bedroom, turning up the volume on my Sears stereo and pulling on my headphones as I enter the alternate and glorious musical universe of my preteen world - when dreams were bigger and boys were cuter and every note, every lyric of my favorite album, Queen II, was infused with a secret I was sure meant only for me. It was my privilege to decipher every bit of it, so I replayed and memorized it all with much delight. Nearly 40 years later I still remember every line of that album, and occasionally something will remind me of one of those songs. The feelings it brings back along with the memories are precious treasures.

My first goal in life as I prepared for the real world was to be a music therapist. It did not exactly work out, but I did become a social worker and for a while, working with mentally disabled elderly, I found a place for music. During these Oldies Sing-alongâs, I saw smiles and expressions of youthful fervor I witnessed no other times on the faces of my charges. Many of them knew the words better than I did, and would share memories quite freely when prompted with music.

To the kid in everyone: I hope you get the chance to have that song that brings up memories that make you feel an innocent joy like nothing else. I hope the feeling of floating in air, shared memories with friends and family, and knowing all the words as you loudly sing always tickles your heart and puts big smiles on your lips, and with a sweet sigh of gratitude I wish for you the lovely surprises a musical life brings.

Music can do all this. A song can elevate a mood faster than ice cream, funny jokes, or a trip to the candy store. While the song may not be the same, the experience of remembering a song, is universal. If it effected us then, it still effects us now. That boost in serotonin might be the thing that saves you: Gets you up if youâre stuck in a rut - Helps you back on your feet when youâre down and out. Or it might be the thing that heals whole cities.

Photo Credit: Music4Life

Neil Diamond, Fenway Park Boston, April 20, 2013
Neil Diamond, Fenway Park Boston, April 20, 2013

The Song that Healed Boston

It was five days after the April 15, 2013 bombings during the Boston Marathon. The city was still in shock. A two day manhunt for the suspected bombers had kept the nearby suburb of Watertown on edge, and the suspects were now either killed or in custody. Throughout, the people of Boston showed mostly strength and resilience. A common phrase was "you messed with the wrong city". That didn't mean there were not some raw emotions in the city, however. Hundreds of stuffed bears and flowers, Red Sox hats and jerseys, and other Boston memorabilia donned makeshift memorials around the city. Signs cropped up everywhere of love and peace and hope. What Bostonians needed was one big group hug. That Saturday night, they got it. As is customary at home games, Sweet Caroline started playing on the PA system in the 8th inning. But there was something a little different this time. Some older fella walks out with a mike and..... It was Neil Diamond himself, the writer and crooner of the song, who had come to lead the crowd in a healing sing-a-long.

Was in the Spring...... And spring became the summer.....

The fans totally ate it up! They sang loud and proud and cheered for "USA". What a beautiful thing. A lot of people wondered, myself included, what it was about that song that made it so special for Boston. Seems like it wasn't all that big a deal at first - Music Director Amy Tobey chose it to be played because she had heard it played at other games. It caught on, as these things sometimes do, like a thing with a life all its own. Sweet Caroline became the Red Sox anthem.

Hands, touchin' hands..... Reaching out......Touching me..... Touching you......

Bosox fans had their own version of the song worked out through the years - these add-ons were more fervent than ever!

Good times never seemed so good

------------------- So Good! So Good! So Good!

Maybe the most poignant lyrics, the ones that no doubt stitched up many wounded spirits, were buried in the second verse:

And when I hurt..... Hurtin' runs off my shoulders ..... How can I hurt when I'm with you?

Whew. .

I love my country.

Hearts full of love to Y'all in Boston from down south.

Source of lyrics and backstory: bostonpastime.com

Footnote: the next week's sales of the song were through the roof! Diamond donated the money from those sales to the bombing victims. Thanks Neil!

Diamond Love - Sweet Caroline and other old fav's

The Act of Singing

The act of singing or even just listening to music creates increased activity in both sides of your brain. This could be why it has such a healing factor.

How Music helped Rep. Gabby Giffords Recover

Why, Oh Why Can't I?

If happy little bluebirds fly, beyond the rainbow....

I had a dear friend, almost like a big brother to me, who died of A.I.D.S. in 1988. I had the honor of being close to him in the months before he died. One thing he made me promise him was that this song (Judy Garland version) was played at his funeral. When I did play it, the gush of tears for me his friends and family...was unbelievable. To this day, it is comforting to hear, as I remember my friend.

Blue Healer - Joe Vitale

This is the first album by one of my favorite mentors, Dr. Joe Vitale. He used ancient chant and some really interesting instruments in making this, and the music is designed specifically to heal the listener. I love the album and use it often in meditation. There are 5 long tracks. Each one brings a different healing vibe.

The Healing Song

The Healing Song
The Healing Song

Music That's Mine - a Non Profit

"Personalized Music Healing for Sick & Hospitalized Children"

Sponsor a sick child with their own healing music

Your own Healing Song - Find your Inner Song

Finding your Inner Song
Finding your Inner Song

Do you have an Inner Song?

A while back I created this recording to help people who have trouble getting to a meditative state. It's all about figuring out your own personal song - a healing mantra, that you can use as your "ohm". It is free to download - my gift to my readers.

What are your healing songs? - We appreciate your comments!

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • DreamingBoomer profile imageAUTHOR

      Karen Kay 

      5 years ago from Jackson, MS

      @lgOlson: Thanks so much Sophie! I hear you on classical music. I love Chopin. Some of his preludes are healing to me too.

    • lgOlson profile image

      L Olson 

      5 years ago from Northern Arizona

      For some reason, my healing songs are all Classical. When I need to find a good place, I go to my music player and listen to Puccini, or Mozart. I guess because the music let's my mind select the memories rather than the associations you get with other songs. I really like your writing here and it reflects my feelings about music in my life. Also, I was just wondering yesterday why The BOSox play Sweet Caroline! It always brings me to tears, even before the Marathon attack, to see that whole stadium singing it together.

    • siobhanryan profile image

      siobhanryan 

      5 years ago

      Blessed-Magical lens

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)