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Music to Grieve To
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Grief and Loss.

Loss and Grief.

One follows the other surely as night follows day. How dark and how long that night will be - well - that depends doesn’t it…

Death is an indiscriminate force from which nobody escapes - we cope with this construct because we have expectations. There are “norms” to which we hope our lives will conform: our children will die after us, our parents before - and not in untimely or tragic ways, but peacefully after long lives.

My father’s death was sudden but not totally unexpected - he had beaten the odds of not making it to 50 and by leaving us on the golf course at age 75 - we were able to reflect on a full life, well lived. I loved him very much and the pain was dreadful, it took me a year to stop feeling discombobulated and another to fully process it - but time and grief did their jobs and on looking back - it was a pretty “normal” experience.

But what if that isn’t your experience? What if the life you loved was cut short - what if their death was neither timely or peaceful? What do you do then? There is no “normal’ for this - there is no handbook that addresses your very personal set of circumstances. A person’s grief is as unique as the relationship they had with the one they lost and tragic circumstances can make it a very long, very dark and very dangerous process.

And so we cope the best we can, we have communities and counselors to help, we have playlists like this that evoke empathy with music that might resonate with you - where you can hear and see that someone else went through it and perhaps you don’t have to be so alone on your journey.

Mike Bauer wrote such a song about losing his mother - if you know someone in a similar space - it might help…

My mom was everything... When she unexpectedly passed in 2014 I had a really tough time finding my footing again. This song is the closest I’ve ever come to reflecting a true feeling in the way it sounds. From the vocal line in which I fought back tears throughout recording to the last two voicemails I had left from her introducing and concluding the track. It’s heart-wrenching. It’s very on the nose. But’s honest as hell.

I quietly released it on what would have been her 60th birthday on 03/20/2018... And maybe, just maybe... It will help a listener who has also lost a very special parent grieve.
— Mike Bauer

You can learn more about Mike Bauer here:

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About the Curator - Andrew McCluskey

The first visual memory I have is that of the white upright piano in Singapore, Hell and the dark forces lived at the bottom, Heaven and the Angels at the top. They would play battles through my fingers and I was hooked.

After my dad died I was very sad - I couldn't play for a while and when I did, the music that came out reflected my grieving state.  I wrote an album of solo piano music called Music to Grieve to - from which the idea of the Music to community originated.  

If you'd like to know more you should read Nicole's fabulous article on why listening to sad music can make you feel better.

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