I guess my love affair with music started in the backseat of a car … no not that backseat … actually the back window of my Mom’s old 1950’s Buick.
To make more room, I had shifted the big old pile of ‘78’s records from the seat to the back window shelf, where the hot summer sun beating through the large rear glass window, melted and warped them all.
My Mom was horrified and, right then and there, I realized that music meant something to people … and what I had done was sacrilege! Music meant everything to my Mom – it was her voice – and I just killed it!
That was the day that music gave birth to a brand new reality in my soul. Music had the power to move people; and seeing what it meant to my mother, it eventually became my voice too … music began speaking to me.
John Lennon once said that before Elvis, there was nothing; and that’s the way it was with me too. I can still remember as a pre-teen falling to sleep during a long car ride, as the radio belted out Elvis’ singing … “I just want to be, your teddy bear…” I don’t remember anything about music before that.
I was so hooked; I even remember being thrilled by the design of old record labels. Let me see … there was Decca, RCA with the little dog ’listening to his master’s voice’ logo; and Columbia’s label that showed twin microphones – to mention just a few. (I know it sounds silly and juvenile; but I was, after all, just a kid.) However, later when the Beatles came along, I can still remember the label design of smaller 45’s records of the Capital label and also their own ‘Apple’ label.
Personally, as a ‘Zoomer’, I had grown up at the end of two eras’ and the beginning of another. There was the ‘big band’ sound of the 1940’s (my Dad’s favourite), the early rock ’n’ roll of the Four Seasons & Elvis (my Mom’s favourite); and even though I got a piece of the Chubby Checkers and the Twist, era, it was really the ‘British invasion’ of the early 60”s that was in my sweet spot.
Actually, I was one of the last in my generation to even know who the Beatles were. It took my first real teenage kiss at a party game called ‘spin the bottle’, and the music playing ‘Eight Days a Week’ in the background, that convinced me that I really should get on board with this new sound. My head was spinning after that too … and I may not have known what day it was … but I knew that if girls liked it, then I did too!
I also realized something else. If the girls loved the music, then that went double for musicians! (Hey, maybe those old piano lessons my Mom sent me to, would finally pay off!) Next thing I knew I was in the high school band and blowing the school’s saxophone on the weekends, as part of a rock group. (Oh how sweet life can be!) Even the bad guys left us ‘musicians’ alone; because they knew that …’like bees to honey’… where we were, so were the girls!
To be continued… fredparry.ca 2011