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Lyric Analysis and Lyric Divergence is defined as the expansion from existing songs or lyrics to any broader use, individualized topics, or generalized discussion. Lyric analysis uses live or recorded music to listen to song lyrics and prepare for discussion and counseling. Topics may focus on personal situations with questions about stressors, loneliness, isolation, coping skills, supports, and healthy alternatives to drug/alcohol use or maladaptive behaviors (Silverman, 2010).
Blackout Poetry: The specific technique of blackout poetry is elaborated upon.
Specific Counseling: This section will contain specific songs and specific questions that could accompany each selection to help guide a session with counseling.
Circling Words and Phrases: Patients will identify personally meaningful words and/or phrases while listening to the song. Individuals may then share which words and/or phrases they selected and explain their significance (Baughman).
Composer's Attitudes: After listening and following along with a song's lyrics, have the group list several topics or emotions the composer may have been thinking about while writing the song.
Cut & Paste Songwriting: Key lines from various songs will be compiled into a list to be used to form individual poetry collages.
Topical Discussion: Non-personal issues addressed in songs, "whether physical (i.e. nuclear war) or emotional (i.e. divorce)," may help a group interact appropriately before emotional topics and personal issues are able to be introduced.
- Patients will suggest songs, which offers you a wonderful opportunity to build your relationship, bring the most patient preferred materials, and often, discover a new song ripe for lyric analysis.
- Ask quiet individuals questions, or redirect monopolizing individuals to respect the contributions of others. Also remember that some people prefer to observe and will still absorb a lot through listening.
Green Book of Songs is a massive thematic guide to popular songs. Search by topic rather than keywords and refine your search by genre or "hits only." Save 40% and pay only $5.95 for an annual subscription with the coupon code: musictherapy (Erfurt, 2011).
Songfacts enables you to search for songs by category.
SongMeanings is a great website to search for song lyrics and read user submitted comments such as lyric interpretations, song or artist contextual information, or explanations of references, terminology, etc.
Song about mental illness from a Depression Wiki.
12StepRadio.com Quality music related to the AA 12 step message collected through annonymous song submissions.
Baughman, Pam. Lyric Analysis Techniques. Retrieved January 24, 2013 from http://my.ilstu.edu/~crropp/Documents/PDF%20files%20341/Lyric%20Analysis%20Techniques.pdf
Erfurt, Michelle. (May 2, 2011). Special Offer: the Green Book of Songs By Subject. [Web log comment]. Retrieved from http://musictherapytween.com/2011/05/special-offer-the-green-book-of-songs-by-subject.html
Riley, James E. (September 20, 2012). Mondegreens for Clear Communication. [Web log comment]. Retrieved from http://themangomuse.blogspot.com/2012/09/mondegreens-for-clear-communication.html
Silverman, Michael J. (July, 2010). The effect of lyric analysis intervention on withdrawal symptoms and locus of control in patients on a detoxification unit: A randomized effectiveness study. The Arts in Psychotherapy, 37(3), 197-201.
Silverman, M. J. (2011). Effects of Music Therapy on Change Readiness and Craving in Patients on a Detoxification Unit. Journal of Music Therapy, 48(4), 509-531.
Smith, Rachel. (2011). Category archive for: lyric analysis. [Blog archive]. Retrieved from http://musictherapyservices.net/?cat=56