The kind of music we listen to depends upon our mood and even determines the same. Listening to music can be therapeutic. Emmy Award-winning violinist and composer Sumeet Sarkar has been using music as a remedy for mental health. The Los Angeles-based composer, whose works have been released on different platforms including Netflix and Apple TV, released an album recently which focuses on using music as therapy. In an exclusive conversation with News18 Showsha, Sumeet talked about the same and explained how music invokes emotions which helps everyone in healing mental health.
“The same way you watch a movie and it invokes emotions, there is a very special skill in composing – we have been able to narrate feelings and stories. When you watch films now, compared to cartoons where you hear sounds of what’s being done, for instance in Tom and Jerry, there are more emotive movies out there that evoke feelings that you cannot express in words. I feel that in all my experience of how to compose music, I have been spending my time writing ambiance minimal music that can help for deeper feelings. For instance, I will compose (music for) the feelings of insomnia and take my audience on a journey that goes really deep and help them understand (what has been happening to them),” Sumeet said.
He also mentioned how he has not only been composing music that helps people deal with mental trauma but also anxiety or anger or grief. “I have been writing music about panic, music that evokes feelings to deal with panic attacks and going through all these phases of grief or anger and resolving all of it at the end,” he shared.
Sumeet Sarkar also talked about how he has been hosting online concerts and performances with the aim to help people undergoing depression. “Imagine an audience where the seats are beds that they can lie down and relax on during a five-hour performance on sound healing therapy in the form of composition,” he said.
The Emmy Award-winning violinist and composer further shared that such therapeutic music keeps people motivated and positive. He also shared that the last two years of the coronavirus pandemic have been difficult for all of us and therefore the need for such music has increased. “What inspired this most of all in the lockdown itself (is that) a lot of artists are going through terrible phases of depression having lost their careers during covid, not having a stage to perform and being locked in a room with so long wit all that musical instruments. You have to stay at home, you are not allowed to walk out,” he said.
On being asked if people share their stories with him about his music helping them overcome depression, the composer said, “Yes, I have had many friends in my community. I have had many messages from people saying my music has helped them through their exam stress. It helps people stay motivated.”
Sumeet Sarkar said healing via music is not underrated but an unnoticed aspect. “Healing via music is an unnoticed aspect. I think we are healing every day by what we hear and it is a sense in our body, the same as touch, smell or sight. You can imagine being in a room that smells hard versus a room that has the right aroma. It’s the same with audio. Until you really notice it, we can start to form a niche and categorise it. It can help us more. Because you won’t just open Spotify and hit a random song to try and get productive.”