Summary. Music empowers people to live more joyfully and effectively. It soothes, entertains, brings healing, inspires, and energizes. In movies, the soundtrack sets the mood and energy of each scene.
Selection Process. Every month, new and old music is reviewed and considered for inclusion for the annual Heart Songs collection. Each month, selections are announced, and then at the end of the year, a compilation is chosen reflecting the best of the best. These are made available through the iTunes music store as a compilation, and are also available through other sources.
Selection Criteria. The following are characteristics of the music selected for the Heart Songs collection.
- The music and lyrics are generally uplifting and hopeful.
- Most of the songs are new, or newly rediscovered
- For some songs, the feeling of the music is similar to that of a soundtrack to an inspiring movie.
- Some of the songs may be forward looking in the anticipation of upcoming events.
- Some of the songs are reflective of the past or present.
- In general, they are songs to motivate, inspire, and energize toward forward positive action.
Genres and Categories. The Heart Songs annual selections generally include some music from the following genres and categories of music:
- foreign language (non-English)
- world music
Archives. Here is a directory listing of past Heart Songs selections.
- Heart Songs Annual Selections on iTunes [Archive]
- Heart Songs Monthly Selections on iTunes [Archive]
- Past Heart Songs Selections and Collections (prior to 200810)
Heart Songs History. Here is a brief description by Gregory Johnson about the history behind the Heart Songs collection.
Back in the 1980s, I began making occasional music mixes. They were on cassette tape at that time. I’d send these out to family and friends. This continued for years. In 2000, I created my first CD mix and called it Heart Songs because theses songs echoed my heart sentiments and insights at the time. I decided then to make a commitment to create a Heart Songs CD every year. The CD would include an artistic cover (sometimes a photo I’d taken that year), and usually there would be a title theme for the year. Printed on the inside of the the CD jacket, I’d include a short letter to friends and family summarizing the year and reflecting on the past, present, and future.
After a few years, I began selecting songs each month. Usually these were songs I’d not heard before. Often, the songs would be a reminder of a significant event when I first heard the song. For example, in 2002, I first heard the song Testify to Love at a dance marathon fundraiser event where a friend was using sign language to express and communicate the lyrics of the song. Hearing the song for the first time and seeing the lyrics in sign language impressed me.
Some of the Heart Songs express something I was feeling. Some of the songs expressed what I felt was a significant message for the time. Sometimes the music just seemed worthwhile sharing and promoting.
Ping – Social Network for Music. In December 2010, the Apple iTunes Store received a significant update to Apple’s Ping Social Music Network. As a result, the ResourcesForLife.com Heart Songs selections are now available in iTunes on our Ping Playlist page. The list is currently out of sequence and includes only May 2009 to present. In January 2011, we hope to update the page to include all past annual Heart Songs selections since 2000.