I remember in being in college the first time I heard A Praise Chorus, from Jimmy Eat World’s Bleed American. It was like someone understood what my life in college was like and the feelings I was processing. To this day, whenever I hear that song I’m a sophmore in college again and have all the feels.

Like you and many others, music has been the connection piece for me. We know the songs, sing the lyrics, and there’s a common bond at concerts. There’s music we listen to on our worst days that speaks to the soul. I now work in the music industry for a non-profit harnessing the power of that and of band’s stories to impact their fans in positive way while helping them overcome struggles. So it’s stories like these that remind me of just how powerful a bridge they can be. Like you said, the band didn’t save you (which I’ve always found silly when people say), but they do understand the hurts we all face and give us extra reasons to stick around.

If you ever get a chance, I think you’d like what we do as we work in the emo/metal scene and are on Vans Warped Tour every year. Here’s a link to all our band interviews talking about their struggles and music. You may see a band in there you know/like:

Most importantly, keep writing. You have a strong voice and skill. And we need more voices like yours in the world.

Storyteller | Combat wounded veteran | Metalhead | Designer | Bleeding on a page just makes it more authentic: https://benjaminsledge.com

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