A Story About How Paramore Became the Soundtrack of My Life

5:39 PM

Prologue: 

For the longest time I've wanted to add a music and/or sports section to this blog, but I'm not a specialist in any of the topics, so at first I put off the idea. Nonetheless, the truth is that sometimes I want to write about it. Music is one of the things in life that I love the most. It’s one of the best ways I can express myself. It brings me happiness and, as this blog is about chasing happiness, I want to share how music has been a key part of my growth. So here's my first post on the topic. I don't know yet if this will be recurrent content or not, but in the meantime, I hope you enjoy it. 

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Photo credit: Eric Ryan Anderson for The New York Times


Paramore released a new single after 4 years and it’s called "Hard Times". It’s the most different sound they have made yet so, at first, it didn’t feel right. It wasn’t a head-banging tune like those I fell in love with in high school, nor an angst anthem characteristic of the band. Then, I realized why. It’s been 10 years since I discovered this band and a lot has changed since then. It would be silly to think they wouldn’t evolve too. Overthinking like I always do, I realized *every album this band has released has fit perfectly in the moment that I was living.


RIOT!




Somehow everything’s gonna fall right into place. If we only had a way to make it all fall faster everyday.
- Hallelujah



I discovered Paramore through Misery Business, RIOT!’s first single in 2007. An album filled with emotional, teenage-angst songs that any high-schooler could relate to. Discovering what life was amidst high school drama, trying to figure out the future, those thoughts we have when we are about to enter adulthood and college without really knowing what is going on. The album had love, sadness, pessimism, optimism, a sense of being lost. The punk vibes would help me get through my last year of high school and help me express my “rebellious” side that would often be so contrasting with my “nerd” status. I couldn’t wait to leave high school behind and most of its people. I wanted a fresh start. 

When this memory fades
I'm gonna make sure it's replaced
With chances taken,
Hope embraced.
- Miracle!



Brand New Eyes



The same tricks that, that once fooled me
They won't get you anywhere
I'm not the same kid from your memory
Well, now I can fend for myself.
-Ignorance


Two years later, nearly after breaking up due to internal issues, Paramore released "Brand New Eyes". I was already in college and had been estranged from once-close friends and family members, but had also overcome trouble and saved other friendships. 

Paramore’s new songs addressed relationships and how fragile it can all become, how it hurts more when friends become strangers. The songs also dealt with facing problems rather than running away, trying to risk a little and to be ourselves in a world where everyone seems to point fingers. This album portrayed survival, but the kind of survival you’re not so sure how long will last. You’re grateful nonetheless, but still unsure about the future.

I often felt like I needed an escape, and so "Misguided Ghost" became that anthem I would sing along to. "Careful" became my go-to song when I was doubtful about making a life-changing decision and "Brick by Boring Brick" helped me keep my feet on the ground. "Looking Up" would remind me of not taking things for granted.

One year away from finishing my Bachelor’s Degree, I saw the band play live for the first time in 2011. It was very little time after two of the founding members had left the band. I also met them and, to this date, they are still the most down-to-earth people I’ve ever met.

Uncertainty about future was everywhere, but somehow Paramore’s music helped me keep it together.

You can't tell me to feel.
The truth never set me free so I did it myself.

You can't be too careful anymore
When all that is waiting for you
Won't come any closer,
You've got to reach out a little bit more.
- Careful




Self-titled album







Lost the battle, win the war. I’m bringing my sinking ship back to the shore.
Starting over. We're head back in. There’s a time and a place to die, but this ain't it.
- Now


In 2013, a year in which I was battling anxiety and family issues, Paramore released their self-titled album. Once again, it aligned with everything I was living through. It was a survival album, but this time, the kind of survival you’re sure will last because you have grown up and you’re hopeful for the future. A more upbeat rhythm and more hopeful lyrics made it different from past records while also showing a needed evolution. 

Paramore wouldn’t drown in depression and be stuck in the past, they would move on and fight to make things better. It made me realize that no one can help you if you don’t help yourself. Sometimes, you’re the only one who can save you. And so I did. I saved myself. I left behind what was slowing me down and that year I was hired at my first official full-time job. Officially an “adult with a job”, I started to save money -as I always do- and would go into my first vacations. Later I would find out those vacations would casually be with Paramore.

In 2014, PARAHOY! happened. It was a 4-day cruise ship exclusively for Paramore fans featuring two concerts and activities with the band. At first I was hesitant to go, I wasn’t sure if I should spend that amount of money. But my closed ones encouraged me to do it. I was earning my own money after graduating and working hard. I ended up going to the cruise and it’s been one of the most amazing experiences I have ever lived.

Meanwhile, “Last Hope” would remind me to let things happen, “Hate To See Your Heart Break” would tell me to keep on living for the joy that is to come, and “I’m not Angry Anymore” helped me not to let old grudges control my life.

So I'm writing the future
I'm leaving a key here.
Something won't always be missing
It won't always feel empty, here.
- Future




After Laugther




It's 2017 and wow, things are different. 2015 and 2016 were chaotic, full of ups and downs, sadness and happiness. I lost people, I gained courage, I changed, I moved away, I grew up. I have a more careless attitude, I risk more, I live in the moment. Yet, when I listened to “Hard Times”, the first single off “After Laughter”, I asked myself, “why did they change?” Now I know. If I changed so much, why they wouldn’t? 

It’s been four years since the last album. The band again lost a member, while an old one rejoined. The music is pop, upbeat -showing positivism towards the future- yet the lyrics address how incredibly hard the past years have been. Just like what has been happening in my life. They have fallen but got up. They have survived and, while hard times will always be around, they want to dance the bad moments away. Just like I do. They say they don’t want to make head-banging music anymore. And, while for me a good rock song is always more than welcome, I can’t wait to listen to this new album.

And I still don’t know how I even survived.
- Hard Times


But I did. I want to go through hard times dancing, live in the moment and see what the future holds.

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* I didn't include their first album "All I Know is Falling" because -although I completely love it- I didn't knew about Paramore until the release of their second album so it (sadly) didn't fit the article's topic.

I hope you liked this new type of content. I might be doing a review of the album once it comes out on May 12. In the meantime, you can listen to Paramore on Spotify and pre-order their new album.

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