Songs for Sound Minds are our picks of the best music that uplifts, inspires and boosts mental health. Songs written as an anthem to overcoming the storms of life. The songs that give hope in those times when we are struggling. Pick number 5 comes from Scottish singer-songwriter Emeli Sandé and her modern anthem ‘Next to Me’.
Next to Me – Emeli Sandé
These days its hard not to feel that songs about men tend to fall in to one of two categories: ego-driven tracks glorifying wealth, excess and womanising; or ones written about their roles as heart and promise breakers. Which is perhaps what makes Emeli Sandé’s track ‘Next to Me’ so unique and brilliantly uplifting.
Beyond her spectacular vocals the lyrics celebrate men (and people in general) rather than bashing them.
“I guess when I write, I always want to write things that are important to me and things I’ve experienced in my life… I’m lucky that I have had very strong men in my life and who have always been very loyal to me…” she explained to music website The Boombox.
“So I just felt, how cool would it be if I could hear a song celebrating those qualities not just in men, but in people. You know, loyalty between one another and a real uncompromising love between on another… I wanted a positive outlook on it.”
In an interview with Spinner, Sandé revealed she addresses different individuals when she performs ‘Next to Me’ depending on how she feels at the time: “…I was thinking about having somebody strong beside you. Sometimes when I sing it I’m speaking about God. I’m just speaking somebody or something that’s with you all the time. that’s constant in your life.”
Sandé’s music and lyrics honour any and all who exhibit those often rare but extremely valuable qualities of loyalty, strength and devotion. Whether you are one of those loyal people or someone who wants to thank them, ‘Next to Me’ is a song that will resonate with its powerful and inspiring lyrics.
“When the money’s spent and all my friends have vanished
And I can’t seem to find no help or love for free
I know there’s no need for me to panic
‘Cause I’ll find him, I’ll find him next to me”