Tuesday, November 20, 2012
In the absence of a decent stereo right now I'm listening to music in the kitchen on the computer. If I'm happy music will be on often. If I'm not then it isn't. That's the thing about music isn't it? It can be a huge indicator into how you're feeling. I have my own favourite happy, uplifting music (artists such as Pink, Fleetwood Mac, Madonna, Jack Johnson, Red Hot Chilli Peppers and dare I say it, Britney - most effective for getting ready to go out or to get that cleaning done), angry music (Tool) and that blur in between of mood evoking music (James Blunt, Neil Young, Pete Murray, The Eagles or old time crooners).
I don't know if I ever could have been musical. I have an average voice, that made the school choir, but seems to irritate my kids when I sing. I played the recorder in school, learnt a few simple songs on the piano at a rental we lived in once and knew a tune or two on the guitar. My parents income didn't stretch enough for music lessons. But they did instill in me the love of music. Supertramp, The Beach Boys, America, John Denver, James Taylor, Dire Straits, Crosby Stills Nash and Young or Tears for Fears will immediately transport me back to my childhood. A time when the record or tape player was almost always on. Happy memories. It is the music I listen to now when I need the reassurance of something familiar.
During the era of Roxette and a little later, my brother and I would set the alarm early on a Saturday morning to watch Rage's Top 40. It was the golden era of Rage, in my opinion, and I don't think you could let your young kids do that these days.
Which makes me wonder. Where does our musical taste come from? Is it nature or nurture that shapes our taste? Funnily enough I can listen to the same music from my teen years that I patiently waited to record off the radio, and still like it. Clothing tastes might change and friendhips fade away, but I still love those particular 90's hits.
When I met Daniel music was always in the background. Usually blaring loudly from the stereo of his shiny ute. Our tastes were fairly similar, as I'm sure many couples are and we shared a love of Nirvana, Marcy Playground, Offspring and the Wedding Singer soundtrack. I wonder how many other couples have tested their compatibility while comparing music tastes? Could it in an unspoken way represent similar tastes and shared values in life?
I hope one gift I can pass onto my kids is the love of music. We listen to a broad range of music here, mostly older stuff, but some new, depending on the mood. So while their current favourite may be Gangnam Style, Julia's preferred genre is kid's christmas music, and Violet loves to dance to anything with a strong beat, it does makes me smile that their own personal tastes are emerging. In future years they may choose to learn an instrument or dancing, or just enjoy music for it's own sake.
If the music we listen to is the soundtrack of our lives, as they say, then it is us as parents that are hitting the play button on the music that will be our children's. For their generation will have it's own music, but it is likely that the music we listen to now, will in some way influence them for the rest of their lives and in turn shape their own individual love of music in the years to come.
So tell me, what is your music past?
Do you still listen to the music from your chilhood? Teenage years?
Who are you listening to now?