I love the Avett Brothers so much for music therapy that I decided to give them a second debut! I featured the song “Head Full of Doubt” a while back which is my absolute favorite to use in therapy. There are so many of their songs that I could talk about, but if I had to boil it down to my second favorite, I would choose “I and Love and You”.
There are two interventions that I have found to be most effective with this song:
Lyric Analysis- The lyrics of this song are fantastic for discussing vulnerability, regret, emotions, relationships and hopes for the future. “Brooklyn, Brooklyn take me in, are you aware the shape I’m in”, may be the most powerful lyrics in the song. Most people can relate to the longing of someone to understand and offer help. My second top lyric would be “3 things that became hard to say, I and Love and You”. What a great line for discussion! Is the singer portraying regret, guilt, remorse, anger, love?… That line can be deciphered many different ways to many different people, which makes it a great lyric for self projection.
Songwriting– the simplicity and repetitiveness of the melody make this a great song for songwriting with either groups or individuals. By changing certain words to make the song more personal to the group, everyone now feels a sense of ownership over the lyrics. The best part is, if you wanted to take the songwriting a step further, you can easily teach participants to perform their version on instruments because it is only a 3 chord song!
I’ve included a video with the lyrics for anyone who hasn’t heard this one. I highly suggest taking 5 minutes to check it out 🙂