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English leaving cert comprehension Essay

Write a personal essay in which you explore the storytelling evident in music and song and its impact on you as a listener.

Music; The art or science of combining vocal or instrumental sounds (or both) to produce beauty of form, harmony, and expression of emotion.

There are many things in the world that I am mildly passionate about, including sports such as golf and swimming, animals, family, friends and school. But there is only one thing that I am extremely passionate about and that is music.

There is something about music and how it can have such a significant effect on my everyday life. Music is something everyone hears at least once a day. Our world is filled by music.

I have a great passion for music. It provides me with satisfaction that I don’t really find in other activities. Listening to it disconnects me from the outside world and releases some stresses in life. When I’m tense or when my other activities drain all my energy, I can just retire to my room, plug in my headphones and just listen to my favourite songs.

I believe music has the ability to change any persons mood. It can be used to let out anger, sadness and happiness. The specific song I listen to can affect how I feel, it may make me cry, laugh, or even feel angry.

Throughout history, people have used song to convey their messages. Songs are a powerful way to get your message across. They are our fears, our desires, our hopes, our dreams, our losses, our celebrations, our memories and our experiences. Each and every one of them are a story.

The stories musicians tell and the themes that they communicate through music have a long lasting effect on the audience. Musicians and composers have the unique opportunity and responsibility to portray their stories that can empower and enable their listeners and fans to believe and relate to their own personal experiences.

Take the National anthems for instance, singing ones National Anthem may it be in a stadium, hall or even at school has the absolute power to reinforce the feeling of pride and accomplishment of that nation. It has the ability to bond every single person of that nation together. When people are representing their country and singing their national anthem anyone can notice the power of emotion it bestows on them. National Anthems are a portrayal of a countries history and culture and it presents their ambitions for the future.

To some extent, a songwriter can be seen as a storyteller, singing about their experiences or feelings. Most songs revolve around a certain theme, such as friendships, love, pain, etc. Each song tells a different story, love songs can either be about falling in love or breaking up.

Rap is a powerful example of how storytelling can be evident in music and song. Rappers are famous for rapping about an event that has happened to them or something they feel strongly about.

Marshall Bruce Mathers, known by his stage name Eminem world wide is an American rapper, record producer, songwriter and rapper. Eminem bases the majority of his songs on his family, in particular his daughter Hailie, drug issues and legal troubles.

One of Eminem’s songs that has the most effect on me his is song Mockingbird. I feel Eminem was referring to the book ‘To Kill a Mockingbird’ where the mockingbird portrayed someone who is innocent but is a victim of circumstance and prejudice. In this song, Eminem’s daughter Hailie is the mockingbird as an innocent young girl, but she is unfortunately a victim because of the harsh circumstances surrounding the situation between her parents. Eminem blames himself for Hailies situation and he tries to comfort her telling her that he will always be there for her even when ‘mommys not there’.

I know sometimes things may not always make sense to you right now But hey, what daddy always tell you?
Straighten up little soldier
Stiffen up that upper lip
What you crying about?
You got me

I feel that the words to this song hold a strong and emotional effect on me and I would presume that it would have the same effect to anyone else listening to it.

Eminem is only one example of a particular artist that has a storytelling aspect in his songs that have an impact on me. I could name many more also, but I just want to end in saying I know music will always be important in my life because of how it has the power to change any mood.

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