When I was younger, music got me through many traumatic times. The breakup of a girlfriend, my dog getting hit by a car, and even having to repeat the sixth grade. I would get home in the evening, and just put on the radio and disappear into my own world. I felt like the DJs were my friends and they always seem to talk about life and love and things that really mattered in the world. Then, they would play music to support those concepts and ideas. It was like a melodic backdrop to a therapy session. I would just sit back and listen and soaking all the wisdom from all the sad songs I can muster.
I found that this really helped me out with struggling with any issue in my life. Through the advancement of radio, listeners actually became involved in the process. There were talkshows based on a variety of subjects and matters. They were headed by actual doctors and therapists who brought a greater insight to the problems the listeners were facing. People could call in, and ask questions and get help right on the spot. What I loved about that was that these were real people with real problems, not like some fake family you would see on TV.
On a smaller scale, people could call into the radio station and request to song based on a mood they were feeling. For example, if they were having a bad day dealing with a coworker, they would usually pick a song that reflected that mood. Or if the workday was just really long and arduous, there were plenty of work songs for them to choose from to feel like they were just a part of the collective struggle in the workplace. It was great to hear how people were doing and how they coped with their issues.
So now I didn’t feel so quite alone in my struggles. I knew there was an ocean of people out there who felt the same way I did, and who also turned to the radio for soothing. I remember the first time I made my first request. I was looking forward to the weekend, but had a long week ahead of me. So I called in one morning to my favorite rock station, and requested “working for the weekend”, which I felt was the perfect way to start my morning.
As a byproduct I got to live vicariously through other people’s issues, which gave me greater insight into my own. I feel connected and respected, amongst my peers who turn to this form of media for relaxation and comfort. What is beautiful about it is that people who are shy, or don’t want to admit that they have a problem can turn to the radio for shows in songs that will help them through. It is an anonymous way for those to seek help, and gives them the freedom to make big changes in their lives.