Forever Young-by Alphaville
Holden feels the need to preserve youth, and believes that children are extremely innocent that have not been casted out by society yet. Holden envies the liberty that children have, and contrasts it with the pressure brought upon him from obligations. Holden is still an immature adult, and wishes that life was as easy as his childhood. He thinks the youth have not all necessarily felt the negative aspects from society.“…I’m standing on the edge of some crazy cliff. What I have to do, I have to catch everybody if they start to go over the cliff-I mean if they’re running and they don’t look where they’re going I have to come out from somewhere and catch them. That’s all I’d do all day. I’d just be the catcher in the rye and all. I know it’s crazy, but that’s the only thing I’d really like to be… (173)”. This song is about hope and to preserve the youth, and to tackle great opportunities.
Knockin' on Heaven's Door- by Guns and Roses
Holden has experienced two traumatic events in his life that can be considered too severe. Holden's younger brother passed away from cancer, and the other event of 'witnessing' a school student commit suicide. Guns and Roses' "Knockin' on Heaven's Door" illustrates that Holden has seen death and needs treatment to deal with these experiences. Holden 'knocks on heaven's door' but cannot admit to himself Allie has passed away. When speaking to Phoebe, Holden can only think about Allie“I like Allie.”
“Allie’s dead – You always say that! If somebody’s dead and everything, and in Heaven, then it isn’t really–”
“I know he’s dead! Don’t you think I know that? I can still like him, though, can’t I? Just because somebody’s dead, you don’t just stop liking them, for God’s sake – especially if they were about a thousand times nicer than the people you know that are alive and all". Holden thinks of Allie as some sort of hero, because he is in need of a role model in his life. However, Allie has died, and Holden needs to stop knocking on heaven's door and accept the fact.
Awake My Soul- by Mumford and Sons
Holden has lost the reason for existence and natural beauty in life, which is highly important. I think it is important in life to appreciate the little things in life, and not rush actions so we may forget about them in the future. Positive thoughts/vibes can really warm the heart and really be all that is needed for a happy day in life, which in my opinion is deep and important. Holden's soul is no doubt in damage and is in need for repair, but it is vital for his heart to keep on beating, figuratively and literally. Melancholy is winter, and it is bitter, unforgiving, and ice cold, but just as always, spring rolls around and begins to refurbish and renew beings that once were not there during winter. This is exactly what Holden needs to do with his soul and inner happiness. Sure everyone goes through a rough time in life, but we all seem to have our spring season afterward. The lyrics I find compelling and spiritual in a way are: “Lend me your hand and we’ll conquer them all, but lend me your heart and I’ll just let you fall, lend me your eyes, I can change what you see, but your soul you must keep, totally free.” Let these words of wisdom be a learning tool and guide to Holden
All My Days- by Alexi Murdoch
Internally, there is no doubt that Holden is substantially unstable with his emotions, which causes a sort of bipolar behavior in himself. Asking questions to himself and no one else, Holden is experiencing loneliness, which then causes him to be socially unattractive with others, or socially awkward. In my opinion, this song represents wandering to a location after you have no idea where to turn to next. In chapters 10-12, Holden vastly explores New York City, not looking forward to telling his parents that he had been kicked out from his educational Boarding School, and has no one to turn to for help in his sense of loneliness. Lyrics from the song that Holden can undeniably relate to are:“I have been trying to find, what’s been on my mind, as the days keep turning into night". I can just visualize Holden walking down New York streets, conflicting himself, and feeling the sense of loneliness. For example,“New York’s terrible when somebody laughs on the street very late at night. You can hear it for miles. It makes you feel so lonesome and depressed. I kept wishing I could go home and shoot the bull for a while with old Phoebe (12.1)", shows the real struggle to be happy again with himself, but keeps finding his way back to loneliness.
Careless Whisper- George Michael
This song I feel like would be on repeat for Holden. Although this song is about never dancing again with a significant other, the is more to the message. The lyrics "Time can never mend, the careless whispers of a good friend", can definitely compare to the loss of Allie, and as well as the dearly missed Phoebe conversations he and her had. Another set of lyrics from Michael are: "There is no comfort in the truth, pain is all you will find", illustrate the significant loss of his dearly admired younger brother who passed away from cancer, 'pain is all you will find' when Holden can finally acknowledge it. There is an obvious abyss of darkness and sadness inside the emotions of Holden, but can be overcome if Holden learns to not 'hide the truth' from his parents, so he can retrieve his old happy self again. Holden can no doubt return to his natural state of immature and happiness, but his inner conscience contradicts himself telling him to stay in the streets of New York, drinking alcohol, and 'carelessly' and aimlessly hurting his social skills. I know Holden can conquer through his vast valley of emotions and loneliness, in due time, he can mend what he has desired for a long time: his old self again.