Songs are the medium of expression of an artist’s feelings, often to evoke a certain emotion within the listeners. Some songs strike self love and warmth in us and leave us with the feeling of empowerment.
The most empowering song I have heard is the song Youth by the very peculiar artist Shawn Mendes, featuring Khalid. This song tells a tale about how even after going through hardships one still has their youth within.
The song goes in-depth about how the anxiety-ridden youth often feel like they have failed at life. Whether it is failed exams, dreams that never came true, unfulfilled expectations, world issues, and too much more. Due to failures and constant panic with the fast-paced society, youth is left with hopelessness. The uncertain nature of life is enough to make a growing person depressed.
As a young person, I often find myself in a dark place, unsure what my purpose in life is. I see the news, seeing the world around me set on fire and it leaves me in despair. Not knowing what the world stores for me fills me with panic. That’s when this song empowers me to overcome my negativity.
Shawn starts the song by creating a relatable statement, “Heart was broken, still not growing”. This lyric signifies how failing in life one feels broken and stagnant and how failure leaves one with a deluded sense of self. Referencing world-shaking terrorist attacks which affect the mental health of every individual, this song delivers how the world still isn’t past hatred.
“Pain, but I won’t let it turn into hate
No, I won’t let it change me
Never losing sight of the one I keep inside.”
These beautiful lines tell us how all the pain we get from the mishappenings in the world shouldn’t turn us into hateful people. As someone passionate about world issues, accidents, events like mass killings, terrorism saddens me and hearing about these events are enough to fill me with hate and rage. But we shouldn’t let our negative emotions stray us away from our true self. These circumstances should not make us hateful people.
Combined with its lyrical value, the upbeat tone and rhythm of the following chorus lines motivate us:
“You can’t take my youth away
This soul of mine will never break
As long as I wake up today.”
Nothing, not any personal problem, not any heart-wrenching world event, nothing can take the free spirit of youth away. My youth, to me, is like energy, making me ready to make a change. I might not be my complete self, but my youth will never go away.
Even if oppressed, youth is an unstoppable force. These lines motivate me enough for me to be confident about making a change. That’s empowerment!
And as long as I wake up, I can do my part to make the world a better place for me and my peers.
The song strongly refers to the aftermath youth has to go through after a great tragedy like terrorist attacks and how these events make us feel rage and desperation and how this generation is affected. These events leave a hole in us due to their catastrophic nature. These events create a sense of danger and discomfort, the dark feeling of not knowing if they will wake up the next day. In verse two, the singer says,
“It’s hard to sleep at night, knowing what’s outside
Feeling hopeless, I need focus”
Being unaware of what might come leaves you feeling so hopeless and it makes you lose faith in the world. All these events shake the young ones to their cores as one can’t help but imagine themselves in that position.
What makes the song this powerful and personal is that the artists of this song were both very young when they wrote this song. This makes me relate to them and gives a personal touch to this song. This song uplifts me whenever there is any tragedy in the world. This song feels like a warm hug and tells me that everything will be okay and that my youth is the most powerful asset and no one can take it away from me.
Concept by - Hasini Lakshminarayanan
Written by - Pallavi Singh
Edited by - Akshath Jaganmohan