Avicii - Gone Too Soon (A Personal Tribute)

Friday was a day of loss and rememberance for a lot of us, but it was also a day of nostalgia for me. The nostalgia stretches back more than half a decade, to 2013, which was when I experienced the magic of Avicii for the first time.

I had always been a bit of a skeptic when it came to electronic music, because it didn’t touch me in the same way that other kinds of music did.

“Why does this song not have any context?” I used to think to myself. Remember, this was a time when electronic music was just entering the mainstream in India. This was the time when Avicii’s  “Levels” hit the charts.

Almost overnight, Avicii was everywhere. His songs were being played at every happening club in town, his music booming in my friend’s car as we drove home from college, his iconic words “So Wake Me Up When It’s All Over” flooding captions over my social media feed. Avicii was my (and perhaps my whole generation’s) first tryst with electronic dance music. Before I knew it, Avicii crept to the top of my playlist.

“So wake me up when it’s all over
When I’m wiser and I’m older
All this time I was finding myself, and I
Didn’t know I was lost”

I remember looking up the lyrics to “Wake Me Up” during an exceptionally boring lecture in college – maybe it was Business Analytics? I don’t remember the exact class, but I do remember that it had a lot of numbers.

I recall myself instantly connecting to the song on a deeper level. Yes, the song was great to party to, but as a college kid who didn’t know what she was doing with her life, the song spoke to me in so many ways. It became more than just a song to dance to. Avicii’s music showed me that electronic music is not something that you can only enjoy while partying or drinking, but it’s also music that can be enjoyed in solitude, in silence, and in moments of quiet reflection.

Just like me, Aviicii fans across the world went through the same wave of emotions on Friday. First, it was shock at the news of his untimely death, followed by grief, which then evolved into a collective feeling of irreplaceable loss. OneRepublic, who played in Mumbai on Saturday, paid a special tribute to Avicii, by playing his biggest hit to a crowd that was unanimously mourning the loss of this dance music superstar. I was right there in that crowd, singing along with a teary-eyed Ryan Tedder, lost in the memory of Avicii.

Everyone remembers Avicii in their own way, for reasons known only to them. What I’ll remember is the feeling that his music evoked in me. I don’t know how to describe that feeling — perhaps attempting to explain it in words would limit its meaning, in a way that would never do justice to its power.

Somehow, Avicii’s songs evoked emotions in me that had, and continue to have, so many layers. The layers are complex, and also somehow simple, just like his music. His songs create feelings of exhilarating freedom, of infinite possibilities and unfettered youth.

My heart breaks a little to know that the world will never experience the magic of Avicii again. But that’s the beautiful thing about music — we can always retrieve a glimpse of that magic, by listening. In doing so, we remember the love that we feel for him and his art.

Avicii, you helped me discover that life’s a game made for everyone, and that love is the prize — a prize that will be yours, forever.

I’ll always be grateful for what you brought into this world.

You shall be missed.

Shruti is remembering Avicii with this playlist on Saavn. Join us in remembering him.

Tags : #Avicii #EDM #Obituary #Tribute

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