Peace & Mercy

Dance & Reach out!

Keep on movin

When you hear the term “soul food,” what comes to mind? African Americans, baked macaroni and cheese, collard greens with smoked neck bone, black-eyed peas and rice, grits, cheese, and butter? I grew up eating all of that and more! That’s “good eatin,” as my grandfather Big Daddy would say.

There’s another type of soul food. You don’t eat it! You experience it, you live it; it heals the body, mind, and heart.

During the post-Civil War era, traditional soul food provided comfort to the descendants of once-enslaved people. Their day-to-day lives were horrible. It was when they arrived back home to a table full of soul food that they felt great!

Soul food is comfort food! Lord knows, no part of soul food is healthful! When eaten over a lifetime, it has proved to cause all kinds of health problems.

As a songwriter, I know music to be soul food of a different variety. It’s one of the best soul foods out there! It goes right to your soul.

Humans endure so much adversity in their daily lives. The deep sorrow and pain and hurt we experience seem never-ending! The loss of a loved one, sickness, divorce, raising children, and the political climate all contribute to the state of our well-being. Our daily life experiences are cause enough for us to sit down and listen to music for the soul.

What do you need? What does your soul need? Are you in emotional pain? Let’s keep it real. I am! 

My music career, family, social media for my music, building my website, and more, all seem good from the outside looking in, but what goes on in my head is a different thing altogether!

It’s funny: I remember, back in the 1980s, that people laughed at the thought that we carried our childhood pain into adulthood.

The pain I’ve been carrying around since childhood still bubbles up! The most interesting part is, I suffered multiple deep traumas as a child. The only obvious one was the tragic loss of my brother Marc. I never knew “ass whippings” were traumatic! I just thought that’s how it was back in those days. We don’t notice the mental and emotional abuse we suffer as children. Much of it was very subtle, and how you saw life when you were a child often defined how you processed the abuse.

For example, I thought “ass whippings” were normal. My brother, though, got maybe a total of three that I can remember. He thought he was damn near being killed! Rightfully so!

As a child with all of those experiences, challenges, insecurities, self-doubt, and so on, that was more than enough to cause pain during our adult life. That pain doesn’t magically go away. Think about it. If you have an old physical childhood injury, I’m sure it still causes you pain or discomfort, though it healed years or even decades ago!

Like that physical injury, emotional injuries caused during childhood will continue to hurt well into your adult life—unless you do something about it!

In today’s world, more than ever before, we talk about healing, health, and wellness. There are literally countless ways to heal your body. Often several methods have to be used simultaneously.

Consciously listening to music as a healing practice is one of the best. Music touches many emotions and feelings. Music covers multiple subject matters.

Are you an avid listener to Back in the Dave? If so, you often hear me say, “If you don’t feel it, you can’t heal it.”

That’s such a true statement. To heal, you have to feel the pain! Music helps you feel. Let me ask you, how many times have you heard a song that reminded you of an event in your life and you responded emotionally? That made you feel the pain or joy as if you were reliving the experience again? Even though the experience may have taken place years or decades earlier!

Music is that powerful!

Music is not the only healing practice available. It’s one of many. There are countless methods to reach your soul. I personally use deep relaxation, breath work, meditation, yoga, healthy eating, journaling, and sitting still. They are not my only practices. I find I must alternate them and discover new methods. The body is always evolving and moving forward. As such, it becomes immune to the same practices done over and over again.

If your soul needs to be fed, music is a great starting point. Just keep in mind that healing your soul takes time, patience, commitment, and work.

Your life is worth effort every day. You should be happy in life. Of course, you’re not going to be happy all the time!

Happiness is not promised. What’s promised is healing.

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