The Sonic Journey... Is it by design, or by default...?
This will hopefully be an interesting post, maybe a little long for some, but thought provoking for others...
In the past few years, I’ve been attending particular concerts largely due to the youngest member of my family, Daisy (or as I often refer to her as Delores Disaster...). These events have been for bands and artistes that I probably would never have heard of, or even latched onto, they would have simply passed me by for one reason, or another.
However, what started as a parental obligation turned into a desire to seek new beginnings, so recognising that she is following a similar path in musical taste, as I did at her age, the ventures allowed me to renew my ticket on the sonic train journey forcing me to stand back in wonderment, marvel and with envy at what she is going through...
I’ve seen her taste change from what many would consider the norm, to a fairly diverse choice of listening and visual performances, particularly in these formative years.
This ultimately led me to looking back in time as to how I, along with many of you, perhaps arrived on this musical venture to where we are today; and where it will take us from here (in which some of you will recognise the synergy between us all in musical influences and tastes through many personal discussions...).
As previously mentioned, in attending these concerts with Daisy, I’ve recently seen the likes of All Time Low, You Me At Six, The Marmozets, Tonight Alive, Black Stone Cherry and many others; interesting bands with a modern take, or twist on rock (and rock being the operative word as they are certainly not a million miles away from bands that I happen to be into today, or grew up with), but Daisy had simply latched onto this genre without any particular influence from her peers, she simply discovered the bands herself.
Is this in her genes?
I know we're all wired differently, but I have other children (I lost count, hey I'm a family man, I've started several...) who didn’t 'choose' this path.
So, I started thinking of what did I listen to way back when, before the shops were open 24/7 and decimalisation was still considered a swearword, to what made an Instant impact on me leading up to; and at the same age of fourteen.
I, like many of you, received unwitting assistance in this area, whether it be from an older, younger sibling or parent(s) and simply curious as to what they were listening to.
I had an older sibling and to a degree was also fortunate that he was (and is still) a working DJ of the day, so I would have the opportunity to hear the latest releases at the time of, or near enough after release date.
Those songs varied from Rock, Pop, Glam and other general chart material of the day, but I was also fortunate that he introduced me to bands that would lead me on the strain of my particular genres for the future.
For example, I was listening to the likes of The Move, Procol Harum, Roxy Music (well before they went pappy!) and Yes at quite a young age, where perhaps they wouldn’t have been comprehensible by today's 'music' standards. I still recall listening to T-Rex's Telegram Sam and Queen's Seven Seas of Rye on the day of release and thinking that’s where I want to be...
I was open to many forms of music, so much has stayed with me and some not so much.
My musical tastes vary through various genres, including many classical composers thrown into the mix (and I have a particular fondness for Dvorak), but I am still in awe of the bands of the late 60's and 70's who were the 'mothers of invention' in their particular arenas - please note that I am of course referencing bands and artistes from pre-1974, before the advent of the holy trinity and such other great bands that followed.
So my main point here is, If I had not been around a sibling (again taking into account that we are talking early 70's and no 'instant' gratification via technology, particularly the Wibbly Wobbly Wormhole) would I have pursued the music that has been with me through the sonic journey that I’m still on today?
With that thought, and considering that many of you reading this will be of lesser years than I (and perhaps some a little more elevated in years), think back to when you were tender age of fourteen and compile ten songs that made either an instant impact on you musically, lyrically, or perhaps both and have stayed with you all these years. It's not a competition and I imagine that all the lists would be very different depending on the current trend of the era where you would have been the age in this discussion.
I have my ten, it could have been many more, but my list of ten has been, and is still with me right up until today for both reference and pure pleasure.
Some of you may think this is quite easy, and like me you may come from a particular time at that age where the cogs of music were growing and generating more power, rock was as diverse then as it is today, very unlike the bland R&B we have to suffer with today across the pop (pap!) radio waves, but back then, the music industry was not so driven about looks, or selling musician's souls for the sake of a percentage from business paraphernalia, but it was a time when we did depend on the music press of the day (Sounds, NME, Melody Maker etc.) and whatever was available on the television at the time (as in the old grey chicken breast, sorry Old Grey Whistle Test...).
I will leave you to ponder and certainly welcome any of your thoughtful comments; and of course as always, thank you for reading.
In the meantime, I will jump back in my time machine...