What songs inspire you philosophically?

Use this forum to have philosophical discussions about aesthetics and art. What is art? What is beauty? What makes art good? You can also use this forum to discuss philosophy in the arts, namely to discuss the philosophical points in any particular movie, TV show, book or story.
Wowbagger
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Re: What songs inspire you philosophically?

Post by Wowbagger » August 21st, 2012, 9:27 pm

Some songs by Rise Against, especially "The Good Left Undone" (the ending of the song is very powerful) and "Ready to Fall" ("I found a shoulder to lean on, an infallible reason, to live all by itself. I took one last look from, the heights that I once loved, and then I ran like hell!")

And "Handlebars" by FloBots (about the progress of technology and how power corrupts, even though I still think technological progress is awesome).

No other examples really come to mind, I'm usually not really moved by song lyrics, but I'm looking forward to listening to some of the suggestions above!

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Grotto19
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Re: What songs inspire you philosophically?

Post by Grotto19 » August 21st, 2012, 9:36 pm

Also check out "Right Now" By Fort Minor (It can put our lives into perspective)

Phibamarih
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Re: What songs inspire you philosophically?

Post by Phibamarih » September 16th, 2012, 4:49 am

:D Music is my religion...As I have very much light and dark dichotomies my philosophy can at times be both bleak and bright. However some of the more positive aspects are:

Rush - Freewill: A song that would seem to suggest that freewill is itself something which we as sentient beings have to consciously chose.

"You can choose a ready guide in some celestial voice. If you choose not to decide, you still have made a choice. You can choose from phantom fears and kindness that can kill I will choose a path that's clear- I will choose Free Will".

Cat Stevens - A song about the ever search for meaning and purpose in ones life, no matter how futile it may seem.

"What's my sex, what's my name, all in all it's all the same. Everybody plays a different game, that is all. Now, man may live, man may die searching for the question why. But if he tries to rule the sky he must fall".

Frank Zappa - Packard Goose: A dark tale of exploitation and the responsibility of the exploiters as well as the exploited which doubles as a metaphor for the concepts of the self according to Obedience to Authority, by Stanley Milgram. :P

"Information is not knowledge, knowledge is mot wisdom, wisdom is not truth, truth is not beauty, beauty is not love, love is not music, music is the best...Wisdom is the domain of the wis (which is extinct). Beauty is a french phonetic corruption of a short cloth neck ornament currently in resurgence...".

-- Updated September 16th, 2012, 4:50 am to add the following --

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Side_of_nothing
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Re: What songs inspire you philosophically?

Post by Side_of_nothing » November 6th, 2012, 7:27 pm

Glad to see XTC getting a mention. Yes 'Dear God' has great lyrics, though I don't agree with their philosophical standpoint. 'Beating of Hearts' is one of my favourite XTC songs and has stnningly poetic lyrics.

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TeenPhilosopher
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Re: What songs inspire you philosophically?

Post by TeenPhilosopher » November 7th, 2012, 11:08 am

Anything from John Lennon, Mind Games, Imagine... Good song writer, he was. When I'm looking for philosophical inspiration, though, I usually just listen to more contemporary instrumental songs that sort of lean towards the part of the emotional plane that I'm trying to come from when I write. Just simple piano melodies, usually.
-- The point of life is to stop believing that you know, and start knowing that you believe -- Moi

-- The hardest tear to shed is always the first, solely for the reason that accepting sorrow is often more sorrowful than the sorrow itself -- Moi

Steve3007
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Re: What songs inspire you philosophically?

Post by Steve3007 » November 7th, 2012, 12:22 pm

Anything by "Half Man Half Biscuit". They nourish my soul with their minutae.

E.g. "Joy Division Oven Gloves": http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JEag0ss9pFU
Or "Even Men With Steel Hearts...": http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DvwA7BK4-6A

Muddler
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Re: What songs inspire you philosophically?

Post by Muddler » November 7th, 2012, 10:42 pm

Maybe the song that contains the line, "Do they have Mogen David in heaven sweet Jesus; if they don't who the hell wants to go."

No, actually I'm still waiting for someone to write one that celebrates the fact that the world is intelligible.

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Re: What songs inspire you philosophically?

Post by Steve3007 » November 8th, 2012, 8:39 am

Louis Armstrong: What an Intelligable World.

T-RAY
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Re: What songs inspire you philosophically?

Post by T-RAY » December 11th, 2012, 12:23 pm

The music of a humming bird's wings.... :D

Fleetfootphil
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Re: What songs inspire you philosophically?

Post by Fleetfootphil » January 1st, 2013, 11:01 pm

The music of other people typing out a post on some of these threads. Godamighty, ya'll sleeping twenty hours a day or what?

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PaulNZ
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Re: What songs inspire you philosophically?

Post by PaulNZ » January 2nd, 2013, 1:26 am

Johnny Cash with his version of the Nine Inch Nails song "Hurt". The lyrics are simple but the song and it's delivery invoke an emotional response, which is personal to the listener…..

"Hurt"

I hurt myself today To see if I still feel I focus on the pain The only thing that's real The needle tears a hole The old familiar sting Try to kill it all away But I remember everything

What have I become? My sweetest friend Everyone I know Goes away in the end You could have it all My empire of dirt I will let you down I will make you hurt

I wear this crown of **** Upon my liar's chair Full of broken thoughts I cannot repair Beneath the stains of time The feelings disappear You are someone else I am still right here

What have I become? My sweetest friend Everyone I know Goes away in the end

You could have it all My empire of dirt I will let you down I will make you hurt If I could start again A million miles away I would keep myself I would find a way

Another classic song for me is a Stones song by the Verve, Bittersweet Symphony….

'Cause it's a bittersweet symphony, this life Try to make ends meet You're a slave to money then you die I'll take you down the only road I've ever been down You know the one that takes you to the places where all the veins meet yeah,

No change, I can't change I can't change, I can't change But I'm here in my mold I am here in my mold But I'm a million different people from one day to the next I can't change my mold No, no, no, no, no

Well I never pray But tonight I'm on my knees yeah I need to hear some sounds that recognize the pain in me, yeah I let the melody shine, let it cleanse my mind, I feel free now But the airways are clean and there's nobody singing to me now

No change, I can't change I can't change, I can't change But I'm here in my mold I am here in my mold And I'm a million different people from one day to the next I can't change my mold No, no, no, no, no I can't change I can't change

'Cause it's a bittersweet symphony, this life Try to make ends meet Try to find some money then you die I'll take you down the only road I've ever been down You know the one that takes you to the places where all the things meet yeah

You know I can't change, I can't change I can't change, I can't change But I'm here in my mold I am here in my mold And I'm a million different people from one day to the next I can't change my mold No, no, no, no, no

I can't change my mold no, no, no, no, no, I can't change Can't change my body, no, no, no

I'll take you down the only road I've ever been down I'll take you down the only road I've ever been down Been down Ever been down Ever been down Ever been down Ever been down Have you ever been down? Have you've ever been down?

Supine
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Re: What songs inspire you philosophically?

Post by Supine » January 2nd, 2013, 4:13 pm

This is a tough question as I'm not sure how to answer--if the music that moves me does so specifically philosophically.

Certain songs can sway feelings--and thoughts--in me differently. Jazz, Blues, Rock, Rap, Classical, or some more traditional religious music can all move my heart and mind in different ways.

Some music that moves my mind to better thoughts and hopes for self and humanity--as well as metaphysically--are the likes of Bach and Enya.

Bach. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eUtCC5VPwBs

Bach. Ave Maria. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N6jtO5-Q0YY

Enya. Emmanuel. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DPHh3nMMu-I

Enya. Toy Soldier. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uRsN8BUIhcc



Others of a much different flavor:

Cotton Jones. Midnight. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8a0M_qZcibo

Cotton Jones. Sentimental Blues. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jBxVmCwOkDs

Kendrick. Swimming Pools. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8-ejyHzz3XE

Blazing Donkey
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Re: What songs inspire you philosophically?

Post by Blazing Donkey » January 3rd, 2013, 4:06 am

Here's a few...

Resolution -- VNV Nation
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Dreamline -- Rush
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Superman -- Five For Fighting
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No man is an island, but if you tie a bunch of dead guys together they make a pretty good raft.

Supine
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Re: What songs inspire you philosophically?

Post by Supine » January 3rd, 2013, 8:11 pm

Blaze, I like that Superman song.

Glad you added back to the thread because I wanted to add Etta James and Sam Cook to the thread.

But here is John Mayer with his song "Say" that I'll add beside your Superman tune.

John Mayer. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BB946nScQLY




Etta James - "At Last." http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S-cbOl96RFM

Sam Cook - "A Change Gonna Come." http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gbO2_077ixs

Mahalia Jackson - "Summertime." http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mc2vVPV_ZTQ

Blazing Donkey
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Re: What songs inspire you philosophically?

Post by Blazing Donkey » January 3rd, 2013, 10:53 pm

Supine wrote:Blaze, I like that Superman song.

Glad you added back to the thread because I wanted to add Etta James and Sam Cook to the thread.
Right on. :) I appreciate your contributions as well. I will definitely continue to post in this thread as long as others are also here. I have tons of songs I find philosophically inspirations, some not even for the lyrics, but for other reasons altogether.

For example, here's another batch of three songs. The 2nd and 3rd, I find inspirational due to the lyrics and music, but the first I find inspirational in a world-afirming sort of peculiar aesthetic way. This kind of music is called K-Pop (eg. korean pop). The song is written in Korean, which I do not speak or comprehend, and while the music is an adaptation of European EBM-style dance music, it also has a distinctly Asian flavor to it, just as J-Pop songs do. Thus, I like that the song is a fusion of both European and Asian EBM music.

In this particular video, the choreography shares a similar duality. It's roots are in American Hip-Hop style dance, but many of the gestures are distinctly Asian and/or are unorthodox & creative, thus creating a distinctly Korean style. But what I find primarily philosophically inspirational about it is:

A) That it even exists to begin with. In other words, that this style has perpetuated itself across the world between multiple cultures. I find that uplifting. I also find it uplifting that the Korean artists have created a entirely new style and thus, in my opinion, added to the substance of the universe (or at least, our reality).

B) I find it interesting to be able to appreciate something that I cannot understand (other than the general drift, mind you), yet still find favor with the aspects that I do understand. This presents to me an interesting ethical questions as to my interpersonal relationships with others. I am also challenged to see what other things I might find appealing but had previously rejected out of hand simply because I wasn't familiar with one aspect of them.

So ultimately, I find this song (and video; because these kind of artists are defined as much by their performance as by their lyrics) to be aesthetically and intellectually inspirational. For other songs, I try to pic videos that are just a single image so as not to distract from the lyrics, but in this case the video is relative to my reason for finding it inspirational.

Flower Power -- SNSD ("Sonyuh Shidae" - Korean for "Girls' Generation")

Sounds comes on at 0.19 for some reason.
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Mr. Tambourine Man -- Bob Dylan
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Brothers in Arms -- Dire Straits
No man is an island, but if you tie a bunch of dead guys together they make a pretty good raft.

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