As many people in the UK are, we’re still concerned and affected by the war in the Ukraine here in the YY&M office. It got us thinking long and hard about what we would do if we had to leave – very suddenly – from our homes, like so many of the Ukrainian people. We have recently packed up the office to move our Yorkshire base (read more about where we’re headed here) and even in much calmer circumstances, any move is a big and potentially stressful deal.

Specifically, we've been thinking about the things that we could (or couldn’t) take with us if we had to move quickly… There is no doubt that being displaced from your home in traumatic times would mean a lot would have to be left behind. You may have enough money to be able to flee, but that certainly doesn’t mean that you know where you will end up or what the journey will be like to get to where you’re headed (if you can find somewhere to go). The Ukrainian people face so much uncertainty going forwards and you can read about how to support them in our previous Music Makes Lives Better article.

But what people DO inevitably take with them is a sense of who they are – a sense of their own identity, which cannot be taken away from them. And part of what makes up that identity is the music people connect and fall in love with.

We clearly can’t and don’t want to even begin to compare our own lives to the lives of the Ukrainian people, but it can be said that there is much more of a transience than before in the UK; people tend to move around a lot more – more so than they did in the last century. One of the things they take with them is their musical taste, as it can offer that real sense of who they are as people. For some balance, we've also created a more lighthearted look at moving in our latest Sounds Like... playlist...

But in times like these, we think it helps to remember other people’s humanity in challenging times. Music does make lives better, but for now, let’s hope it can provide a much-needed lifeline and sense of self for all those displaced by war.