Music Soothes the Soul

Thursday, April 18, 2013

It is said that music soothes the soul.

I certainly believe that music plays an important role throughout life.

As a child, my first recollection of music is hearing my mother sing lullabies as she cradled a sleeping baby.

Later I heard her singing as she went about her daily chores. While she swept the floors or cooked a meal, she would be singing some country song popular at the time. She loved Ernest Tubb, the Texas Troubadour, and Roy Acuff songs.

She would sing "Walking the Floor Over You" by Ernest Tubb and "You are my Sunshine" recorded by Jimmie Davis.

At that time, I didn't appreciate her choice of music but that didn't stop her from singing.

When I was a teen, I would come home from school and play records.

We had a large combination console radio/record player that we played

It sat in a corner of our living room on Laurant Avenue.

I would play popular music and also Hawaiian music which, at the time, I liked. I also enjoyed listening to Floyd Cramer's piano tunes.

The popular music was played before roll and roll came on the scene a few years later. It was the big band era and singers like Frank Sinatra and Dinah Shore and Doris Day were popular.

As a young adult I used to tune in Dick Clark's American Bandstand.

After I married and moved away from home, he helped pass the lonely time for me when I was miles away from home and family.

I became a fan of country music and listened to legends like Johnny Cash and Loretta Lynn and Patsy Cline.

I also liked southern gospel music and traveled to Sunday afternoon conventions to hear quartets sing the favorites of the day.. There was the Blackwood Brothers, the Jordanaires, and The Statesmen Quartet..

I remember seeing performances by the Blackwood Brothers in Hayti, Mo., and the Jordanaires in Caruthersville, Mo.

Later Elvis Presley would chose the Jordanaires for his vocal background singers. They performed with Elvis from 1956 to 1972.

All of us can remember songs from times past that stir up memories, some happy, some sad.

There are songs of lost loves, lost lives, happy days and unforgettable moments.

Let a certain song began to play and we are transported to another moment, another time.

Even now whenever I hear "You are my Sunshine" I remember mama and my mind sees her dancing around the room..

When I married and had children, I repeated my mother's singing.

While washing dishes or preparing a meal, I would sing old songs, sometimes not realizing that I was following in mama's footsteps.

It was just an unconscious habit.

It occurred to me one day that I wasn't singing as much.

It wasn't that I lost the allure for music; I never lost that, but I just stopped singing.

Maybe it was when the children left home to pursue their own lifestyles, their own music.

But, no, that couldn't be it, because my grandchildren remember that I sang a lot, not just at home, but while I was driving down the road. I would persuade them to join in, sometimes in two part harmony. They laugh about those times.

It's true that music soothes the soul.

It can inspire, uplift the spirit, and bring a smile.

During heartache or illness, it can rekindle the spirit..

Like laughter, it is medicine for body and soul.

So turn the radio on and listen to the music in the air.