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Humans of Harker: Where music meets maturity

Connie Xu uses music as a medium for growth

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Humans of Harker: Where music meets maturity

“Listening to music, it just always really, really helps get me through things. Curating playlists, playing music, and playing my instruments has always has been an outlet for emotions that are too strong to recognize. It has really always just brought me a peace of mind no matter what I'm doing,

“Listening to music, it just always really, really helps get me through things. Curating playlists, playing music, and playing my instruments has always has been an outlet for emotions that are too strong to recognize. It has really always just brought me a peace of mind no matter what I'm doing," Connie Xu (12) said.

Kathy Fang

“Listening to music, it just always really, really helps get me through things. Curating playlists, playing music, and playing my instruments has always has been an outlet for emotions that are too strong to recognize. It has really always just brought me a peace of mind no matter what I'm doing," Connie Xu (12) said.

Kathy Fang

Kathy Fang

“Listening to music, it just always really, really helps get me through things. Curating playlists, playing music, and playing my instruments has always has been an outlet for emotions that are too strong to recognize. It has really always just brought me a peace of mind no matter what I'm doing," Connie Xu (12) said.

by Andrew Chang, TALON Sports Editor

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No matter where you find her, whether it be in the library, in RPAC practicing for her next performance, or Phil’s coffee, Connie Xu (12) will always be listening to music. In fact, she creates a playlist for every mood she has, whether it be “bittersweet”, “messy”, or “golden hour.” Her love for developing playlists based on her feelings has been an evolution of her love for music from when she was a child.

Connie started on the piano when she was very young and attributes her introduction and love for this expansive hobby to her mom.

“Music has always been a really big part of my life,” she said. “And then in middle school, I discovered the magical application that is Spotify, and it’s just a database that has really everything you could think of, in terms of listening to music.”

Connie’s passion for music evolved as she grew older. When she initially discovered Spotify in middle school, she only thought of it as an app to listen to music, but over time, it’s become a platform where she expresses her distinct feelings through the playlist making feature. The plethora of music on Spotify allows her to create groups of music that perfectly reflect her moods.

“A lot of the specific moods I feel are super transient. So, a lot of the playlists I make, I don’t listen to ever again beyond that mood. I can be driving home from having a bad meal and make a playlist just because I feel unsatisfied,” Connie said. “I make them more as an in the moment thing rather than a long-term thing, which I feel like embodies me as a person because I’m pretty scattered and have a lot of thoughts and put these thoughts into my selection of music.”

Each of her close friends have seen how her peculiar playlist-making habit has evolved over time.

“Her playlists are so unique. She has playlists in literally every kind of genre. It shocks me how many songs she knows. It literally goes from classical music to hardcore rock to French,” Elizabeth Yang (12), another one of her closest friends who she met in eighth grade, said. “[The music] is everywhere, and I just don’t understand how she knows so many songs, and when she plays the song, she knows every lyric to every song.”

Lilly Anderson (12), one of Connie’s closest friends, has seen an exceptional amount of growth in Connie since her freshman year.

“So at the beginning of high school, I believed she followed the hype music and I think that everybody conforms to that because everyone wants to be part of a group and know what everyone else is talking about,” Lily said. “I was a little standoffish at first because I didn’t like that aspect, but as she’s grown, she’s been able to go off on her own way and every emotion is portrayed through a certain sound or through a certain genre of music.”

As a result of her maturing, she has also become a better friend. Kobe Howard (12) met Connie in middle school and became close friends with her, but gradually drifted apart as high school started. However, they recently reconnected in this past year.

“I only talked to her a few times in high school before junior year. She was, to me, kind of quiet.” Kobe said. “But then as soon as I got to know her, she became much more loud and outgoing. She isn’t scared and afraid to speak her mind. I think that’s what I really appreciate about her.”

Lily also recalls a specific memory of her and Connie at the Bay Club that clearly demonstrates her ability to speak her mind and let others open up to her.

“We were sitting in front of Bay Club and we just laid our heads back and just talked about how we were going to attain what we wanted in life and how people perceive us without even knowing us” Lily said. “As we were just talking, I just started developing such a respect for her because I was able to be so candid and so open about certain feelings that I don’t usually share with a lot of people. It was such a fresh friendship for me.”

This ability to speak her mind when she doesn’t agree with someone is one of the many aspects of her personality that her friends love. Elizabeth treasures Connie for her willingness to drop everything she’s doing to make sure her friends feel better.

“Like if I’m upset about anything, basically, she’ll drop everything for me.” Elizabeth said. “She will stay on the phone with me to calm me down no matter how long it takes me. She puts so much effort into her friendships that I can’t repay her back for it.

Connie’s growth and opening up to her friends ultimately stems from from her love for music.

“Listening to music, it just always really, really helps get me through things. Curating playlists, playing music, and playing my instruments has always has been an outlet for emotions that are too strong to recognize.” Connie said. “It has really always just brought me a peace of mind no matter what I’m doing.”

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Humans of Harker: Where music meets maturity