Stay Home, Make Music: Things To Do To Make Quarantine Time More Musically Productive

Apr 13, 2020

The COVID-19 has dramatically affected the everyday lives of many across the globe. Life, as we know it, has temporarily come to a pause — busy streets are now virtually empty and most people are confined in their own homes.

In the country — with President Rodrigo Duterte extending the Luzon-wide enhanced community quarantine until April 30 in an effort to contain the infectious disease — the majority of the Filipinos will have to spend a few more weeks in their respective abodes.

While this pandemic has brought forth changes that have both short- and long-term impacts on various levels, people are still encouraged to make their time productive while staying safe at their homes. In this feature, we’re rounding up tips on how to make the most of your time through music — whether you’re a seasoned artist, an aspiring one, or simply an avid fan of the art form.

Widen your musical horizons

Music, especially during tough times, is an essential form of entertainment and more importantly, a vital source of inspiration.

While in quarantine, grab the chance to explore other genres — gospel and praise music included — and serve something new to your musical palate.

You can also go retro by checking out your parents’ vinyl record or cassette collection. If you’re one of those lucky people who get to spend this time with their loved ones at home, make discovering music an experience that can strengthen your bond.

Stream music legally

If you are to indulge in music digitally, make sure to access songs through legal platforms.

As the pandemic has negatively impacted the music scene — with concerts and music festivals being cancelled or postponed — one way to continue supporting the industry is to stream and buy songs legally.

Music streaming platforms like Spotify and SoundCloud have also launched campaigns to raise funds for the people working in the music circuit who have temporarily lost their sources of income.

Sharpen your musical skills

Got a music instrument at home? Use your time to learn and practice playing it. Take advantage of the technology and search for tutorial videos online or download mobile apps that offer music-playing lessons.

To help keep aspiring musicians busy while the world fights against COVID-19, music brands and instrument sellers have also started offering free lessons. For instance, Gibson has teamed up with Amped Guitar Learning and Sweetwater to offer free guitar lessons via the Amped Guitar app for up to three months.

Be inspired

Thanks to modern technology, you can also access other music-related materials like audiobooks, podcasts, films, and TV interview and concert archives right at the tip of your fingers.

Use your time to learn more about your favorite acts and songs to keep that musical inspiration coming. And to take a break from binge-watching your favorite series, you can also stream documentaries that relive the careers of music icons (“How The Beatles Changed The World,” “Oasis: Supersonic”) and give a glimpse of music stars beyond the stage (Taylor Swift’s “Miss Americana,” “Gaga: Five Foot Two”).

Uplift each other through music

At a time when billions of people throughout the world are advised to stay home, music has never been more relevant in terms of spreading positivity and uplifting one another.

From artists creating new songs to holding at-home concerts, music can be used in various ways to relay important messages of hope and gather funds for the benefit of the frontliners and the underprivileged.

Like how many international artists are doing, our own local acts are also staging digital gigs-for-a-cause. For example, folk-pop ensemble Ben&Ben held a Facebook Live concert called “Puhon” in March where donations will be used to buy personal protective equipment for the frontliners, COVID-19 testing kits, meals, and relief goods. As of writing, the campaign has already raised over PhP4.2 million.

READ: Bringing People Together Virtually Through Music: Ryan Cayabyab, Ben&Ben, and More Perform For COVID-19 Donations

Try your hand at music-making

Been meaning to compose your very first original composition? Challenge your excuses, overcome your fear, and don’t hesitate to write what you feel. Unleash your creativity and pour out your emotions into a song that you can (finally) call your own.

Check out episodes of Wishcovery Originals — Wish 107.5’s own singing-songwriting competition — and get music-making tips from the show’s judges Jungee Marcelo, Monty Macalino of Mayonnaise, and Jay R.

Besides crafting an original tune, you can also create a bucket list of musical things that you’d want to further accomplish such as making music with household items, creating a song in response to your favorite track, or collaborating online with your musical buddies.

Challenge yourself

If you are a seasoned musical artist, you can maximize your stay at home by doing music-related challenges.

Try writing an EP’s (or a full album’s) worth of songs or go live on social media and challenge yourself to a series of impromptu thematic songwriting. You can also connect with your fans by hosting live broadcasts where you can perform a couple of songs, or share an interesting thing or two about them.

Curate your personal “health and hygiene” playlist

With the quarantine notice (lockdown in other parts of the globe), a Spotify report shows that more people are now collaborating in curating playlists.

If you are to create one with your loved ones, why not try putting up a selection of tracks you can listen to while taking daily showers or cleaning and disinfecting your house?

And in line with bringing hygiene and music together, you can also sing your heart out to your favorite songs while you wash your hands for at least 20 to 30 seconds. According to health experts, you need this much time to wash your hands properly in order to help protect yourself from viruses and bacteria.

Sing and dance it out

Music has a healing power. Throughout the years, studies have proven how singing — group singing, especially — helps relieve feelings of anxiety through the release of the hormones oxytocin and endorphin.

While being on quarantine, battling an unseen enemy in the form of the new coronavirus, getting stressed out is unsurprising. Sing your worries away by belting out to your favorite hits (and Wishclusives!). Better yet, serenade your loved ones via a video call — or do a karaoke-style video conferencing.

And if singing is not yet enough, you can groove to the rhythm of your favorite upbeat tracks. After all, it’s important to boost your immune system by exercising and keeping active while indoors.

Put your brain on percolate

Speaking of exercising, it’s not only your body muscles that should be stretched — you should also put your brain on percolate while staying at home.

You can use music to enhance your memory by learning and memorizing the full lyrics (and guitar chords) of a newly discovered song or by playing musical games like name-that-tune and lyric-linking (colloquially known as dugtungan ng kanta).

Bring out your artsy and neat side

One way to boost your overall well-being is to let your creative juices flow!

Blend music with your other artistic pursuits — try recreating or drawing your favorite album’s artworks or writing your well-loved song lyrics in calligraphy.

You can also use your time to give your entertainment nook a much-needed makeover. After redecorating and disinfecting this part of your home, try arranging your old CDs and music magazines alphabetically or by genre.

Share a ray of sunshine on social media

While physical social distancing is in effect to help contain COVID-19, it doesn’t mean that you should stop connecting with others.

Especially now that social media timelines can be quite toxic, do your part and share a ray of sunshine — choose your favorite line from an uplifting song and share it on your account, or share your playlists or your list of recommended music-themed films and documentaries.

In these trying times, let us fill our hearts with love and songs that spark hope and togetherness. Let us always keep on wishing and praying.

Should you have any medical concerns, UNTV — a BMPI-operated TV network and Wish 107.5’s sister company — is offering free consultation via its 24/7 digital clinic hotlines: 0915-189-7007 (Globe), 0918-438-8988 (Smart), 0943-411-8001 (Sun), and +63918-438-8988 (Viber).

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