Toe-tapping commuter tunes - with benefits for the mind too

By Beth Allcock on May 13, 2014 8:30 AM |


What do Gloria Gaynor, Michael Buble and Shania Twain have in common?

The poptastic trio aren't the latest recruits for yet another reality TV show instead, they've been grouped together for Owen Redahan's latest focus - a playlist tuned into the benefits and impact of feel-good, upbeat songs on the mind.

The West India Quay councillor has chimed his belief in "the power of music" and it's mind releasing beat with his Top Twenty Toe Tappers, designed to give a high-energy boost to commuters making their way to and from E14.

He's tailored the tracks - which are primarily from the Eighties as he believes these sounds better lift the spirits -

to address issues of anxiety and stress raised by some of his Wharf-based clients.

"If we are anxious about something such as going to work then listening to upbeat music can help the brain focus on things that make us less apprehensive," said Owen, who works from a base in Cannon Workshops.

"It gives the brain a break to process things.

"And the playlist is not relaxation, it's a mind refresh.

"It's positive energy and it initiates a positive feeling

"If you can switch off and listen to positive music when you go into work you might be in a better mental state to approach work and deal with it."

But, what if you're not a fan of tracks from a decade filled with legwarmers, shoulder pads and neon style?

Owen said any mood-lifting music which prompts memories of happier times - not more mellow ones - fit the bill.

"If we are really sad we could listen to sad music and it's a bit of a luxury - I won't say it's wrong, but you have got to be careful you don't go into a downward spiral," he added.

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Our three favourites of Owen's bunch of 20 tracks.

>Gloria Gaynor, I Will Survive - The prime feel-good anthem with lyrics to shout aloud - perhaps best to chant them in your head if you're on the Tube, though

>Katrina & The Waves, Walking on Sunshine - Oh so cheesy but never fails to raise a smile, especially if it's a blistering summer's day

>The Waterboys, The Whole of the Moon - A slightly slower one, reminiscent of the latter stages of a party setlist