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The Norseman

The Norseman

Sometimes it’s just a phase

Music creates memories, serves purpose in different times

Growing up, we go through many different phases as we try to figure out who we are. One of the areas in my life that has gone through phases just so happens to be music. I’ve been surrounded by music my whole life, so it’s always held a special place in my heart.

Starting off, in 6th grade I was Clairo obsessed. When I first heard her song “Hello” I was IN LOVE. I mean it was on replay. I constantly listened to her songs Back to Back until I knew the lyrics by heart.

But her song “How??” now that was MY song. I definitely played that one out to the point where my siblings and parents knew the lyrics word for word. I just couldn’t get enough of her. I loved her calm aura that matched her calm soothing voice. Slowly, as I moved into middle school, Clairo and her music faded to the back of my mind but I still listened to her occasionally.

Seventh grade was an odd and lonely year of my life. Since I didn’t have many friends, I spent most of my time listening to music. “Summertime Sadness,” was the first song I heard by Lana Del Ray. I liked the song so much that I started listening to all of her albums to find a song that I enjoyed just as much or maybe even more.

Every now and then I found a song that I liked but none of them really stood out to me until I discovered her song “Video Games.” That was the song and my all time favorite by her. For some reason though most of her music wasn’t for me, only a select few.

Lana wasn’t the only artist that I latched to in 7th grade, I started listening to Molly Brazy, Jhene Aiko, Clara la San, Aaliyah, SZA, and Stunna 4 Vegas (but I’ve always been a Jhene and Aaliyah girly thanks to my mom.) And trust me, I know Molly Brazy and Lana Del Ray don’t mix.

My playlist on shuffle at that time went crazy. One minute I was listening to “Video Games” by Lana and the next I was listening to “Last Minute” by Molly. I was all over the place, but it was the perfect balance for 13 year old me.

Towards the end of 7th grade I was introduced to the group Sonder, but at this time my fav Brent was doing his solo music, so I listened to both and let me tell you, the song Too Fast still has my heart. His vocals, the lyrics, the beat…it’s everything. I’m still not out of my Brent Fiyaz phase and I don’t think I’ll ever be.

Now onto 8th grade. Jhene, G Herbo, Aaliyah, Brent, Summer Walker, SZA Vacations , and Amber Oliver. I fell in love with the music group Vacations in 8th grade. I don’t know what it is about them, but “Telephones” is a song I still listen to on the daily.

Even though I had already been introduced to Jhene’s music by my mom, I became obsessed with her in middle school. She just has a very calm vibe and I love her voice.

I remember in 6th grade I used to listen to “Playing Games” by Summer Walker all of the time, but that was the only song that I knew by her at the time. Going into middle school I started listening to her more frequently. I don’t think I have a favorite song by her; honestly, I like the majority. In 8th grade my favorite song by SZA was “Awkward.” I really adore both Summer Walker and SZA because their music can give off the same vibe. I just think Summer Walker is more calm and mellow.

Oh, and about G Herbo? All pretty girls love Herb, that’s all I have to say. His song “Locked In” is one of my fav’s at this moment, but I’ve been on him since middle school.

I was introduced to Amber Oliver when I was listening to a Sonder playlist. “One Unread” was the first song that I ever heard by her. It’s really a beautiful song and I love the background vocals.

After I listened to it a few times, I looked her up and listened to some more of her music, and I quickly discovered my second favorite song by her, “When It’s Over.” She has a beautiful voice and deserves more recognition.

I don’t even have to say too much about the princess of R&B, because who doesn’t listen to Aaliyah???
Now onto one of my more recent eras. Freshman year I discovered Mariah the Scientist. I cannot express my love enough for her music. “Spread Thin” is one of her more popular songs. I discovered it by watching all of the trauma dump slideshows on TikTok (iykyk.)

I also liked her song “Always and Forever.” So, like always when I like an artist, I began listening to her albums. And let me tell y’all, the first time I listened to her album Ry Ry World I became OBSESSED. “Brain” and “Aura” are my favorite songs on that album. Her album Master is full of my favorite songs like “Note To Self,” where she confesses her internal conflicts, and “7am” (which is one of my all time favorite songs by her.)

Recently, she released her album To Be Eaten Alive. I swear, the whole album is heavenly. My absolute favorite songs on the album are “Love Sick”, “Heaven Is a Place on Earth,” and “Good Times.” I listen to them almost every day, so trust me, I know them word for word.

I absolutely LOVE Miss Mariah with my whole heart. I love how different her music sounds compared to everyone else that I listen to. I swear, I’m never growing out of my Mariah the Scientist phase. All pretty girls love Miss Mariah, if you don’t…then I don’t know what to tell you.

Music is something that almost everyone enjoys. It can put you at ease when you’re stressed, help you relax, and improve concentration. A song can hold memories, like when you hear your favorite song from 5th grade, it can bring back memories that might have been pushed to the back of your mind.

Throughout the many phases of my fifteen year old life music has always been there to comfort me through whatever I’m going through. Getting ready for a track meet? I listen to music. Stressed over something? I listen to music. Irritated? I simply listen to music, and that lyrical therapy sets me right every time. Music never fails.

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SaNyla Bullock, Staff Writer
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