Photo: Flickr/Raph_PH

How Paramore’s Music Stole My Heart (Over and Over Again)

It was the summer before I started high school that I first heard Hayley Williams, Paramore’s front-woman, singing the chorus on “Airplanes” by B.o.B. Immediately captivated by her voice, I eagerly began searching for more Paramore music.

I came across their latest album at the time, Brand New Eyes, and fell in love with everything about it. Her voice, the music, and especially the lyrics really resonated with me.  “Playing God” was the first song I listened to, and served as a brash introduction to Paramore’s sound and Williams’s rock voice, which was very different compared to how I first heard her singing on the radio. “Careful” and “Feeling Sorry” further cemented my newfound love for the band, and the rest of the songs on the album quickly followed suit.

However, “Turn It Off” was the song from the album that hit me the hardest. When I heard it, and really listened to the lyrics, I felt like I was being spoken to—like someone else knew exactly what I was going through, and knew just how to comfort me for that reason.

What I love most about this song is that it doesn’t offer a solution to your problems; and yet, it’s comforting and serves as a reminder there’s always hope, even if you feel like you’ve hit rock bottom.

The song’s message is that when you’ve hit rock bottom, then hoping is all you have, since the only way you can go is up. Coincidentally, “Turn It Off” was the song I most needed to hear given my current situation. At that time, I was constantly anxious about many things: starting high school, trying out for the volleyball team, friend troubles, being forced to attend youth fellowship meetings every Friday, and soon, only being able to see my mom on the weekends. “Turn It Off” quickly became the song I’d turn to whenever I was having a crisis, and it still serves that purpose to this day.

Brand New Eyes was the album of that summer for me. I clung to every word of each song, finding meaning in all of them and applying their lyrics to my own life experiences. “The Only Exception” tells of the skepticism of true love that comes from witnessing your parents’ marriage fall apart firsthand—something I could relate to. “Brick By Boring Brick” is a warning to all those who choose to live life by turning a blind eye to every harsh reality; the more you do this, the worse everything will seem, which is something that I could relate to and resonated within me. I’d listen to this album every chance I had, and always had my earbuds plugged into my iPod.

Soon after indulging myself in Brand New Eyes, I listened to the two albums that came before it, Riot! and All We Know Is Falling. I went through the same process of discovering songs whose lyrics affected me deeply and made me feel as though someone else was feeling every bit of angst I was, and ultimately wanted to let me know I wasn’t alone. Songs like “That’s What You Get,” “All I Wanted,” and “Let This Go” quickly became my go-to songs to comfort my soul when it came to crushes and heartbreak, and losing school friends who would graduate or move, never to be seen again.

“Hallelujah” and “Looking Up” were the songs I’d listened to when I wanted to celebrate the small, good things that happened, while “When It Rains” and “Brighter” served as the sad songs for rough days. The songs on all three of these Paramore albums are really what got me through my first two years of high school, and through the first half of my junior year.

In the second half of my junior year of high school, Paramore released their fourth album, simply titled Paramore. When it came out, I excitedly took to iTunes and began sampling the songs, savoring each one of them. My heart fluttered as I listened, realizing that their signature sound had changed quite a bit. I embraced it all the same though, and found myself falling in love with yet another album of theirs.

I committed every lyric and melody to memory in no time, and had the album on replay for a long while. This album’s tone is much happier in comparison to its predecessors, and places an emphasis on looking to the future and focusing on the present instead of trying to fix the unchangeable past.

While the song “Now” taught me to leave the past in the past, “Future” was the song that helped me to realize that whatever I was going through would only be temporary.

Once again, Paramore created music that helped me get through the hard times and helped me realize that all my pains weren’t going to last forever.

It wasn’t until May of this year that Paramore released their fifth album, After Laughter. The release of this album couldn’t have been better timed, since its subject matter was incredibly relevant to my current situation. “Caught In the Middle,” “Told You So,” “Hard Times,” and “Fake Happy” were all perfect songs to voice the way I felt about losing my dad’s house (we were there for eight years, the longest we’d ever stayed somewhere), and being forced to find new homes for two of our pets (who we’ve owned for almost as long as we’d inhabited the house) as a result of the move. “Rose-Colored Boy,” “Forgiveness,” and “Pool” served as songs that helped comfort me during my more personal crises.

If it weren’t for this album, the events of this year would have been much, much more difficult to cope with. Almost every track on After Laughter has an upbeat tune coupled with dark (and sometimes morbid) lyrics, which perfectly defined how I felt about watching everything fall apart—I was beyond sad about everything that was happening, and yet I would automatically say I was doing just fine if anyone asked. After Laughter was what I listened to incessantly as a means to cope as each hardship occurred, one after another.

Ever since I accidentally discovered Paramore, my life has really never been the same. It may sound dramatic, but this band’s music is really what has kept me going for seven years, and for more to come.

I’ve learned, time and time again, that listening to Paramore is like having someone sit by your side while you vent. That someone isn’t there to give you all the solutions to your problems, but to comfort you in the moment and to let you know you’re not alone in whatever you’re experiencing. Paramore will always have a special place in my heart for this reason. Their lyrics never fail to resonate with me—the first songs I’ve heard by them still have the same impact on me that they did on day one.  No matter what, I always find myself coming back to Paramore, and I’m quite certain it’ll keep being this way.

I'm a fourth year college student studying towards an English BA, and am planning to become either a writer or an editor. My hobbies include taking care of my pets, doing crossword puzzles, listening to music, watching Studio Ghibli movies, and of course, reading and writing.

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How Paramore’s Music Stole My Heart (Over and Over Again)

It was the summer before I started high school that I first heard Hayley Williams, Paramore’s front-woman, singing the chorus on “Airplanes” by B.o.B. Immediately captivated by her voice, I eagerly began searching for more Paramore music.

I came across their latest album at the time, Brand New Eyes, and fell in love with everything about it. Her voice, the music, and especially the lyrics really resonated with me.  “Playing God” was the first song I listened to, and served as a brash introduction to Paramore’s sound and Williams’s rock voice, which was very different compared to how I first heard her singing on the radio. “Careful” and “Feeling Sorry” further cemented my newfound love for the band, and the rest of the songs on the album quickly followed suit.

However, “Turn It Off” was the song from the album that hit me the hardest. When I heard it, and really listened to the lyrics, I felt like I was being spoken to—like someone else knew exactly what I was going through, and knew just how to comfort me for that reason.

What I love most about this song is that it doesn’t offer a solution to your problems; and yet, it’s comforting and serves as a reminder there’s always hope, even if you feel like you’ve hit rock bottom.

The song’s message is that when you’ve hit rock bottom, then hoping is all you have, since the only way you can go is up. Coincidentally, “Turn It Off” was the song I most needed to hear given my current situation. At that time, I was constantly anxious about many things: starting high school, trying out for the volleyball team, friend troubles, being forced to attend youth fellowship meetings every Friday, and soon, only being able to see my mom on the weekends. “Turn It Off” quickly became the song I’d turn to whenever I was having a crisis, and it still serves that purpose to this day.

Brand New Eyes was the album of that summer for me. I clung to every word of each song, finding meaning in all of them and applying their lyrics to my own life experiences. “The Only Exception” tells of the skepticism of true love that comes from witnessing your parents’ marriage fall apart firsthand—something I could relate to. “Brick By Boring Brick” is a warning to all those who choose to live life by turning a blind eye to every harsh reality; the more you do this, the worse everything will seem, which is something that I could relate to and resonated within me. I’d listen to this album every chance I had, and always had my earbuds plugged into my iPod.

Soon after indulging myself in Brand New Eyes, I listened to the two albums that came before it, Riot! and All We Know Is Falling. I went through the same process of discovering songs whose lyrics affected me deeply and made me feel as though someone else was feeling every bit of angst I was, and ultimately wanted to let me know I wasn’t alone. Songs like “That’s What You Get,” “All I Wanted,” and “Let This Go” quickly became my go-to songs to comfort my soul when it came to crushes and heartbreak, and losing school friends who would graduate or move, never to be seen again.

“Hallelujah” and “Looking Up” were the songs I’d listened to when I wanted to celebrate the small, good things that happened, while “When It Rains” and “Brighter” served as the sad songs for rough days. The songs on all three of these Paramore albums are really what got me through my first two years of high school, and through the first half of my junior year.

In the second half of my junior year of high school, Paramore released their fourth album, simply titled Paramore. When it came out, I excitedly took to iTunes and began sampling the songs, savoring each one of them. My heart fluttered as I listened, realizing that their signature sound had changed quite a bit. I embraced it all the same though, and found myself falling in love with yet another album of theirs.

I committed every lyric and melody to memory in no time, and had the album on replay for a long while. This album’s tone is much happier in comparison to its predecessors, and places an emphasis on looking to the future and focusing on the present instead of trying to fix the unchangeable past.

While the song “Now” taught me to leave the past in the past, “Future” was the song that helped me to realize that whatever I was going through would only be temporary.

Once again, Paramore created music that helped me get through the hard times and helped me realize that all my pains weren’t going to last forever.

It wasn’t until May of this year that Paramore released their fifth album, After Laughter. The release of this album couldn’t have been better timed, since its subject matter was incredibly relevant to my current situation. “Caught In the Middle,” “Told You So,” “Hard Times,” and “Fake Happy” were all perfect songs to voice the way I felt about losing my dad’s house (we were there for eight years, the longest we’d ever stayed somewhere), and being forced to find new homes for two of our pets (who we’ve owned for almost as long as we’d inhabited the house) as a result of the move. “Rose-Colored Boy,” “Forgiveness,” and “Pool” served as songs that helped comfort me during my more personal crises.

If it weren’t for this album, the events of this year would have been much, much more difficult to cope with. Almost every track on After Laughter has an upbeat tune coupled with dark (and sometimes morbid) lyrics, which perfectly defined how I felt about watching everything fall apart—I was beyond sad about everything that was happening, and yet I would automatically say I was doing just fine if anyone asked. After Laughter was what I listened to incessantly as a means to cope as each hardship occurred, one after another.

Ever since I accidentally discovered Paramore, my life has really never been the same. It may sound dramatic, but this band’s music is really what has kept me going for seven years, and for more to come.

I’ve learned, time and time again, that listening to Paramore is like having someone sit by your side while you vent. That someone isn’t there to give you all the solutions to your problems, but to comfort you in the moment and to let you know you’re not alone in whatever you’re experiencing. Paramore will always have a special place in my heart for this reason. Their lyrics never fail to resonate with me—the first songs I’ve heard by them still have the same impact on me that they did on day one.  No matter what, I always find myself coming back to Paramore, and I’m quite certain it’ll keep being this way.

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