Music therapy: What songs are getting us through high school?


J. Cole’s “Crooked Smile” features as a student favorite. (Album cover photo sourced from Spotify)

Cassidy Watts , Staff Writer

High school can be a stressful time for students, and music lifts their spirits. Most people have a special song that gets them through a difficult time. 

   A casual survey of students showed that some of these special songs include “Something Has to Change” by The Japanese House, “Crooked Smile” by J. Cole, “Digital” by Joy Division, “Rollin” by Calvin Harris featuring Khalid and Future, and “Forever After All” by Luke Combs.

   “Crooked Smile” was chosen by senior Lainey Rapchick. This song meant a lot to her throughout her high school years because it’s a song about embracing who you are.

   “I like this song because it is a reminder that how God made you is enough, and you don’t need to wear makeup or change your hair or put on fake nails on because you are beautiful how you are,” Rapchick said. “So being in high school you deal with always feeling like you need to look a certain way to fit in, but in reality you don’t and other people see the beauty in you.”

   For some students, it’s not necessarily the message in the lyrics, but in how the song makes them feel.  

   Senior Kristen Willoughby’s song choice is “Butterfly Effect” by Travis Scott. 

   “Sometimes when I feel anxious about school, I play ‘Butterfly Effect’ and it helps with my anxious thoughts,” Willoughby said. 

   This story idea was sparked by English and humanities teacher Julie Skinner. Her humanities classes completed an assignment where students submitted a song that got them through high school. The assignment was introducing in the second quarter, when her classes were discussing coping with difficult times. The discussion turned to music and what songs help students in challenging moments. Every class, a song that was submitted for the assignment is played at the beginning of the class.  The songs students submitted have a special place in their mind. 

Join us in the conversation — comment below with the songs that are getting you through high school.