Music That Explores Recovery

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Recovery music can inspire and motivate us on the road to sobriety. Many musicians have produced songs inspired by their own addiction and recovery experience. Whether the song represents their own sobriety story or as a loved one supporting a family member’s recovery, there are hundreds of songs that explore addiction and recovery.

Here are six songs from artists who have shared their voices of hope to inspire and motivate recovery:

Sober by Pink (LISTEN)

Ah, the sun is blinding
I stayed up again
Oh, I am finding
That that’s not the way I want my story to end

Pink shared the meaning behind the lyrics: “We try to get away from ourselves, and find our ‘true selves’ and then we do these things that take us so far from the truth, I guess that ‘Sober’ is ‘How do I feel this good when it’s just me, without anything to lean on?’.”

Not Afraid by Eminem (LISTEN)

We’ll walk this road together, through the storm
Whatever weather, cold or warm
Just letting you know that, you’re not alone
Holla if you feel like you’ve been down the same road

Eminem, who has frequently produced recovery music, achieved 11 years of recovery in 2019: “As I got sober, I started re-discovering things about myself that I had forgotten for so long that I kinda suppressed down, you know, or whatever […] So, the whole theme of the record [is] as a person, I’m feeling better. See, this is how I feel; I feel good enough to be this, to say this, to do this.”

Thank You by Keith Urban (LISTEN)

I couldn’t stand to think about how
My life used to be
And how without a single warning
It all slipped away from me

Keith Urban wrote “Thank You” as a tribute to his wife Nicole Kidman for her support on his road to recovery: “(the song) became quite a confessional – much more intimate than I might have written had I intended to write about (her). It was very instinctual and very much from the heart.”

Starting Over by Macklemore (LISTEN)

Didn’t pick up the book
Doin’ it by myself didn’t turn out that good
If I can be an example of gettin’ sober
Then I can be an example of startin’ over

Macklemore is a prolific advocate for the recovery community, headlining RecoveryFest in 2018: “I wanna challenge myself, I wanna challenge society, and I wanna be the best version of myself, and the way I can do that is by expressing and talking about concepts that no one else will, that people are afraid to address. I wanna be able to talk about those openly and honestly and figure myself out and help those who listen to the records figure them out.”

Amazing by Aerosmith (LISTEN)

It’s amazing
With the blink of an eye, you finally see the light
It’s amazing
When the moment arrives that you know you’ll be alright
It’s amazing
And I’m sayin’ a prayer for the desperate hearts tonight

Aerosmith frontman Steven Tyler currently has nine years of sobriety: “All the magic that you thought worked when you were high comes out when you get sober. You realize it was always there, and your fear goes away.”

Swimming Pools by Kendrick Lamar (LISTEN)

Some people like the way it feels
Some people wanna kill their sorrows
Some people wanna fit in with the popular that was my problem

Kendrick Lamar opened up about growing up in the family cycle of addiction and his determination to break the cycle by choosing sobriety: “Sometimes you have the trends that’s not that cool. You may have certain artists portraying these trends and don’t really have that lifestyle, and then it gives off the wrong thing.”

Power your recovery with the Voices of Hope playlist on Spotify, featuring recovery music curated and inspired by Valley Hope Alumni.

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If you feel like you need help immediately, the Valley Hope team is available 24/7 at (800) 544-5101. If you or a loved one are ready to seek help, call today and begin your journey to a healthy, happy life in recovery.