“I used to be with it, but then they changed what “it” was. Now, what I’m with isn’t it, and what’s “it” seems weird and scary to me. It’ll happen to you.“
Grampa Simpson, ‘Homerpalooza‘ episode of The Simpsons (Episode 3F21, original airdate: May 1996)
I didn’t believe Grampa Simpson at the time, but in the 14 years since this episode originally aired, I find this statement applies more and more to my life.
I’ve paid attention to music since I was a little kid. I remember rocking out with my parents when my mum and dad would put their records on and turn it up. I also remember when they’d turn up the music when they were having parties and my sister and I were supposed to be sleeping. Not sure how we were supposed to sleep through “Paradise by the Dashboard Light” played at top volume, but it helped when I knew what that song was when they played it at high school dances. (I clearly remember saying “Oh my *gawd*, my *parents* used to listen to this song!”)
I used to read a lot of music magazines. I didn’t always pick up the albums the critics recommended, but I liked knowing about them, and being able to know something about who was singing the song on the radio or on TV. Now, I rarely buy new music. I may pick up the odd album that a favourite band or artist has put out, but I find I’m even doing that less and less. Good thing I didn’t end up becoming a music critic as I dreamed of being when I was in high school.
I’ve recently started tuning into the pop stations when I’m driving by myself for errands and whatnot. I’m a rocker so this feels weird to me, but it gets me out of my head for a few minutes, even if I think some of the songs on today’s playlists are dirty dirty. (Another example of me no longer being with it – where did my cane go so I can shake it at the kids while I tell them to get off my lawn?) I’ve even been known to drive around a little longer just to hear the end of a song – something I haven’t done since I was a teenager.
While I’ve been writing this I’ve been trying out Grooveshark. I was happy to find some of my old favourites, but I got a huge kick out of the Lady Gaga/Beyonce/Metallica mashup “Enter Telephone”. Maybe I will catch up with today’s music yet. Or maybe not – Sean just bought us concert tickets to see KISS – a band that made it big before either of us were even born. We’re crazy excited about it – we’ve never seen them before, and the show should be high on spectacle. Should be good value for my buck.
Because the biggest thing I’ve discovered about music since becoming an adult is that I’m a lot choosier about what I spend my money on.
Are you still up on the music of your youth? Do you pay attention to the music the kids are listening to? Does music sound as good as it did when you were a teenager? Let me know in the comments.