How often do we see people on social media posting their music related tattoos these days? It’s become a real thing! Whereas in the past you didn’t tell anyone about your tattoo, nowadays it’s something to be proud of. It’s something you can share openly, most of the time. It’s a way to honour your love for a song, a band, a genre, or an album. It’s a way to have a memory on your skin for all eternity. It’s a way to start a conversation about your passion for music too!
Sometimes a song or band hits you so hard with emotions, that you can’t do anything else but have that feeling eternalized on your body. They got under your skin and the ink solidifies that feeling.
I got my first two tattoos in 2009, one of which is music related. It’s a simple ankle tattoo of part of a Lifehouse (Blyss) song, but it still means the world to me.I did not regret doing that, not even for one second. It’s mine. It belongs to me. It’s part of who I am now. It quickly and directly tells me that you will only regret the things you didn’t do.
It took something sad to spark my second lyric tattoo. A friend got me to listen to The Script’s album No Sound Without Silence. One song in particular stood out. In tough and even tougher times, the lyrics to “The Energy Never Dies” reaffirm what I believe to be true. I knew almost a year before I got my third tattoo what the words would be. It took me a while longer to figure out the design. When I look at this tattoo on my lower arm, I am reminded of a year full of heartbreak, love, loss, letting go, hope, laughter, togetherness, fragility, and magic. It reminds me to live life as I see fit, because it’s my life, and it’s already so short. It also reminds me of the bond between loved ones that sometimes really is unbreakable.
I have seen so many gorgeous, inspiring, breathtaking, painful, complex, simple, weird, funny, and creepy tattoos that I don’t know where to begin. Whether it’s a stunning back piece inspired by an album cover, a full sleeve of imagery and lyrics, or just one single word relevant for a band or song, it doesn’t matter. When ink feels right, it simply feels right. It doesn’t matter whether it’s a Britney song, a Justin portrait, a declaration of love to Taylor Swift, part of a Slayer song,a meaningful lyric, a fun lyric, or an autograph (even if you might want to reconsider a couple of these). What matters is that you are sure you want to keep it under your skin for the rest of your life. What matters is that it’s meant to stay. It’s meant to never leave you.
Instagram is always a wonderful place to start if you are looking for a music inspired tattoo. Pinterest has a world of ideas too. There’s so much amazing music out there that I could have my entire body tattooed with lyrics to songs that changed me, that helped me, and that make me smile or cry. I would need extra space on my body to include all the ideas in my head. Let’s face it, I could have a 1000 wrist tattoos, yet I only have two wrists.
To me, the abundance of lyric/music tattoos shows me that we are all connected in a weird but beautiful way: Music affects us. Music affects us so much that we want it with us forever, whether we lose the mp3, whether iTunes goes bankrupt, or whether a band quits. Some words and images never fade. Some things are indeed forever. Some things settle in your heart and soul and really never fade. Coldplay said it beautifully: “got a tattoo and the pain’s all right/ Just want a way of keeping you inside.” What are your music related tattoos? Do you regret them or would you not want it any other way?