Musical Motivation

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T's picture

Everyone's preparation is different. Some people like to be with others, some like to be alone. Some go through their speech twenty times, some put their headphones on and tune everything else out.

Speech is just as much a mental challenge and it is a physical performance. Getting yourself in the right state of mind to take on all of your competitor is a necessary, but difficult, task.

My motivation, inspiration, and mental preparation came from a tape (yes, a tape, one of those things you could put in a cassette player - remember those?) Every Saturday morning, my speech coach would play a tape he made the night before. The bus would start up, the donuts would be passed back, and the tape would be turned on.

The songs were always the same. They were familiar and they were all associated with past successes, past speeches, and past friendships. He played them and we remembered the wins. We remembered the speechies that graduated. We remembered why we were awake at 6 A.M. on a Saturday morning. I actually hated short bus rides because I knew the tape wouldn't be that long.

Here are a list of the songs we would listen to on the way to tournaments. If you are a coach, it might be worth trying this method. It can help lessen the nervousness of your competitors, build camaraderie within the team (nothing brings people together like singing at the top of their lungs), and create some great memories.

1. "Break My Stride" - Matthew Wilder

2. "Bye Bye Bye" - NSync

3. "Kung Fu Fighting" - Carl Douglas

4. "A Moment Like This" - Kelly Clarkson

5. "I Will Survive" - Gloria Gaynor

6. "Come on Eileen" - Dexy's Midnight Runners

7. "Brass Monkey" - Beastie Boys

8. "Regulators" - Warren G.

9. "Ice Ice Baby" - Vanilla Ice

10. "Can't Touch This" - MC Hammer

And these two must be played last (bus becomes silent, competitors spend these two songs concentrating on what they need to do in order to win)

11. "Never Surrender" - Corey Hart

12. "One Moment In Time" - Whitney Houston

Brass Monkey would serve as such a big distraction...i love it!

T's picture

At the very first tournament of my senior year, every single senior placed. We all had trophies for the way home, so we blared that song on the bus and danced with the trophies above our heads. It is one of my favorite speech memories :)

"Can't Touch This" is a nice touch!

I personally adore "Lose Yourself" by Eminem.

I can honestly say that I have never heard anyone use the word "adore" to describe an eminem song

You must be hanging out in the wrong crowds, haha.

I like listening to music that helps me get into character. Last year, since my piece was dark and creepy, some of my favorites were:
1. Change- Deftones
2. Sweet Dreams- Marilyn Manson
3. Animal I have become- Three Days Grace
4. Finale- Howard Shore
5. Let it Go- The Neighborhood
6. Seven Devils- Florence and The Machine
7. Coma White- Marilyn Manson
8. Whispers in the Dark- Skillet
9. Heart Shaped Box- Nirvana
10. Devil Within- Digital Daggers
11. Fresh Blood- Eels
12. Keep on Runnin'- Cat Power

I've always gotten weirdly pumped-up by Eye of the Tiger.

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