The Shoutout Series #2: Rosalyn

Welcome back to the Shoutout Series, your chance to weigh in on everything that makes music so important to you. Whether it’s a question of lyricism, of rhythm, or of artists’ personalities, we each have our own reasons for what we like. The question is, are we able to articulate those reasons? Or do they lie out of reach, embedded in our subconscious minds? Over the course of these articles, I will be collecting opinions and testimonies from anyone who feels inclined to send them to me (at rdl11b@acu.edu). Last week, I provided my own story. This week’s comments come from Rosalyn, a listener in East Texas.
“To begin with, I generally prefer to listen to female vocalists who are physically comfortable for me to sing along with. I can only guess this is my ego playing with the thought that I too could be a famous recording artist,” she writes, emphasizing her mental response to the listening experience.
“Sometimes I enjoy male singers, but usually those that sing either emotional pop/rock or sweet ballads.  I imagine they are giving voice to my own emotions, but it jars for me when they insert the name of the woman they love or even use female pronouns.” Here, Rosalyn is putting herself in the place of the singer – for her, songs offers a chance to step into the shoes of another and take part in their stories. Like with movies or books, music allows for her to engage with the artist.
“In my car, I usually listen to a Christian music radio station. Here I benefit from having the easy lyrics and tunes I can sing along with while adding the extra dimension of having lyrics that help me to focus on my faith.” Rosalyn demonstrates the deeply personal nature of her music tastes; rather than focusing on the artist or the songs themselves, the experience is translated into what is relevant for her, whether it has meaning for anyone else or not.
“I guess overall for me music needs to be easy to listen to. It needs to be relatable, understandable and familiar,” she concludes. Rosalyn’s testimony is an excellent example of how many of us approach music. It mostly comes down to things we don’t think about consciously, such as how easily we can sing along with it or how well we identify with the stories being told. Though she might not give herself much credit, Rosalyn captures a lot of what goes into our tastes. As is often the case, simplicity is a common human denominator.
But what do you think? Send in your comments for a chance to have them displayed in a future article!

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Richard Lyne

Richard is an ACU graduate who was graduated summa cum laude from Abilene Christian University's honors college with a major in English and a minor in business administration. He hopes to return to school for an MA degree at some point, but is currently managing a coffee kiosk at the local grocery store in Denton, Texas. He has written for the Appetizer since spring 2015.

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