Where Words Leave off…
Post by David Olson ● Nov 6, 2017
Music can touch us emotionally in ways that words alone can’t, I think that’s why I’ve learned to love it so much. It’s been a powerful tool that’s had a profound impact on me in just about every area and stage of my life. It has the ability to transport someone to another place and time, evoking memories and feelings, and the significant moments that words alone cannot properly convey.
Music is so powerful because it speaks to us on a deeper, more primal level. It bypasses the logical part of our brain and directly engages with our emotions. When we hear a sad song, for example, we don’t need to be told that it’s a sad song – we feel it in our hearts and our bodies.
Music also has the power to bring us together. Whether it’s singing along to a favorite song at a concert or dancing to a lively beat, music has a way of bringing people from all walks of life together in a shared experience. This sense of community and connection can be especially important in times of crisis or isolation.
In addition to its emotional impact, music has been shown to have a range of other benefits for our physical and mental well-being. Studies have shown that listening to music can reduce stress and anxiety, improve sleep, and even boost the immune system.
It’s undeniable that music is an incredible tool for people to feel more inspired, and connected, but for most people, it represents the soundtrack to the important moments of their lives.
When I was three years old my parents had me start violin lessons which I continued for almost 8 years before transitioning to the piano and the trumpet. My father, grandfather, and uncles played bluegrass and country music together on their guitars on a regular basis in the living room growing up throughout my childhood and adolescence. It wasn’t until after decades of ‘forced music education’ and constant exposure to my grandfather jamming together where I picked up a guitar during my junior year of high school and instantly became hooked. I felt inspired, empowered, and challenged with it. Guitar was one of the easier instrument to learn how to play fast but one of the most difficult to play well. Playing with my grandfather’s jam sessions, being apart of our church’s worship team, and playing in a variety of groups at high school all lead to studying music in college where I was able to appreciate and experience music on a whole new level.
Music education provides a wide range of benefits to people of all ages. In addition to fostering a love of music and self-expression, a music education can also improve a student’s overall academic performance and social skills.
One of the most notable benefits of a music education is the improvement it can have on a student’s cognitive development. Studies have shown that students who participate in music education tend to have higher test scores and grades, as well as improved spatial-temporal skills, critical thinking, and problem-solving abilities. These skills are not only important for success in music, but also in subjects like math, science, and language arts.
In addition to the cognitive benefits, music education also promotes social and emotional development. Playing in a band or choir gives students the opportunity to collaborate with their peers and learn to work as a team. It also helps them to develop discipline, dedication, and time management skills.
Music education provides a well-rounded and enriching experience for anyone willing to study it. The skills and benefits that I gained through a music education and being exposed to it at an early age made a positive impact on my overall development and paved the way for other future success.
Here are a couple music highlights for me over the years:
A Classical Guitar performance for my senior recital at the University of Northwestern in Minnesota.
‘Because’ is the first song I wrote and recorded that won an award for and has been featured on the radio
‘I’m Forever Changed’ was the first song I ever wrote and recorded many years later. I was able to record and perform with local Twin Cities musician Joel Hanson (from PFR) perform it with me.
Here is a song I wrote called ‘Love You More’ when I worked at Wooddale Church in Eden Prairie as a music director. The Twin Cities Gospel Choir & gospel singer Robbie Robertson joined me back in 2008.
For a couple years I was in a band called ‘Sacred Road’ that was based out on the east coast. We had numerous concerts at events in New York but a highlight was being interviewed by 98.5 KTIS radio station in St. Paul Minnesota (at my alma mater).Next time you turn on your favorite song, take a moment to appreciate the power of music and how it can lift your spirits and bring joy to your life.