“Right in the feels”

Something that’s been on my mind for a while is a comment from music YouTuber Adam Neely. “Music makes you feel thoughts.” I want to unpack that and also examine what it means for me personally.

The first thing that I think of are the times I’ve gone clubbing or to concerts. The music is so loud you literally feel it. It hits you in your heart, spreading all throughout your body. So, most obviously, feelings are visceral; something physical that’s expressed by way of listening to music. (Side note: I really miss going out dancing.)

Anyway, on a deeper level, feelings are emotional. (Yes, yes, chorus in the back: duh.) It’s like a post I wrote but I’m not sure I ever shared – or, if I did, it’s something that’s been lost to time in my archives. In it, I talked about an “oof” playlist I have on my personal, non-clarascassettes Spotify. It’s one of my longest playlists, if not the longest one I have. The playlist is a collection of songs that speak to some sort of ache. They might be melancholy or wistful; many are in a minor key. None of them are truly sad, I don’t think – they just capture a kind of introspective loneliness and an intensity of feeling.

And again, music is that conduit, that access point for either expressing or (if you dare) revisiting those feelings. That might be why I love music so much. I’m an introvert at heart (though I’ve gotten better over time) and so expressing myself doesn’t always come naturally. With music, I can turn it up, share it, and with that, say, this is what I meant.

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