If there’s one thing I like about the walking, it’s the music. Climbing to the summit of that mountain can be made so much better, in my eyes, with the correct music track. Maybe some epic orchestral movement, or some amazing electric guitar, or Justin Bieber…if that’s what you’re in to.
I like being able to lose myself, be that through my thoughts, my writing or my music. I don’t follow one particular person religiously, but when a specific track comes on, and I like it, I’ll stick to it. Play it millions of times until my brain finally takes a step back and tells me of the mistake I’m making, and that I can no longer listen to it because it is ‘ruined’. Walking the Camino was an opportunity for me to explore this escapism through music, discovering exactly what I like, and if it’s possible to like other things with more subjection to it.
On the other hand, other people seem to cope better without any background music, just their thoughts. This I can understand, it makes it easier to contemplate whatever it is you’re meant to be contemplating. My dad, for instance, rarely listened to music but still came away with more or less the same experience I did.
The other fallback, I found, was the pressure to pick ‘good music’. I never understood why, because someone hadn’t heard of who I was listening to, it was bad. There are a million different types of music, and billions of tracks, but because you haven’t heard of this particular one, it’s bad. Music is a very personal preference, doubly so in this environment. It becomes more of an extension of yourself, of your thoughts, permitting you to connect to yourself, and your environment, with greater ease, depending on your presence of music or no music.
In my opinion, I find that music serves to intensify a specific emotion that you’re experiencing. Amplifying your thoughts with greater clarity. This can be why many people have different favourite songs dependent on ‘what mood they’re in’. The anger and rage you feel becomes clearer with that heavy metal track, or why, when you’re in a romantic setting, the perfect romantic ballad can help ‘woo’ your date. This is why it is so easy to connect with those special lyrics, because they perfectly sum up all of you’re emotions and thoughts when listening to it.
Lyrics become embedded into memory, stuffing themselves into the cracks of your mind, never forgotten, a snapshot of your current state whilst listening to the perfect song.