My Musical Awakening

Back when I was younger.  A lot younger. (No, younger than that.) My musical tastes was pretty much limited to the softest of rock, love songs and ballads, and, well, things like this:

The “Donny and Marie” show was on the air and, yep, I was a big fan.  Which should tell you pretty much all you need to know about my musical tastes back then.

About the time I was going into the Air Force, MTV (yes, they used to play music) was founded.  Now, most of the places I was stationed I didn’t have cable.  But at some point I encountered this video–best guess is it was while I was stationed in England:

The “story” in the video is what roped me in but it got me to listen, actually listen, to a different style of music than I had paid attention to before.  I started listening to more “Rock and Roll” in addition to the softer love songs and ballads–which I still enjoyed and still do.

So this was the first break in the wall, the first glimmer of light passing through my eyelids in the course of waking up.

More years passed and I ended up in a place that actually had cable both MTV and VH1.  And I encountered this one:

Okay, it was the babe with the sword that drew much of my attention here but still, my musical horizons expanded still more.  I had previously been rather dismissive of The Artist Formerly Known as the Artist Formerly Known as Prince.  The reasons don’t really matter but here, once again, I actually paid attention.

More years passed.  I encounter work by John Ringo.  if you don’t know who he is, no he isn’t a musician.  He’s a writer.  My first encounter with his work was in his “Posleen Trilogy” (which turned into four books then expanded into a series including other co-authors and so forth). Music played a roll in that by reference–a gimmick was that certain styles of music “fit” as a movement cadence for…well, the details don’t matter.  And here I got this one:

Later, I picked up another of his books, Ghost. Look, I’ll warn you, this book is not for everybody.  It’s violent.  It contains explicit fetish sex, including non-consensual.  The main character is not a nice man. (It also won a romance award, but that’s another story.) But what it, and the series that spawned from it, did do was introduce me to several artists and music genres that I had not encountered before and I was just…wow.

There was this piece by the Dark Wave group The Cruxshadow. (It was called “Goth” in the book and marks when I started thinking of myself as “goth” and breaking out of the bad advice I had received many years before.)

In addition to the dark wave, that same series introduce me to power metal:

And Symphonic metal:

And with those as starting points I started some explorations of my own:

Evanescence:

Hammerfall:

And, continuing my Goth exploration, I tried Bauhaus:

However, I didn’t much care for Bauhaus.  An interesting change of pace, but not something I’d listen to much.  Thought I’d have to turn in my Goth card (while still being allowed to keep my Metalhead card).  But then I discovered some others.

The Sisters of Mercy:

The 69 Eyes:

Type O Negative:

And that’s where I am now.  So maybe I get to keep my goth card after all.

One thought on “My Musical Awakening”

  1. Growing up in the late 70’s-80’s, much of my background music was classic rock, Motown, and and blues.
    When I got to high school, hair metal was all the rage, and I was an Guns & Roses fan for a bit. But, I found that what I liked in them, I could find more of it in Led Zeppelin. So, me and most of my cohort moved into classic 70’s rock & prog- Led Zep, Rush, Pink Floyd, and so on.
    Around that time, I picked up the bass guitar, and started reading related periodicals. Those introduced me to the world of Jazz, and the great players like Jaco, Stanley, Nathan East, Anthony Jackson, and so on. Plus, I also began a new appreciation of the great musicianship of the old R&B, Soul, Funk, and Motown guys like James Jamerson, Duck Dunn, Chuck Rainey, and so on.
    While in college, I happened across a used recording of the Who’s “Live at Leeds”, and that was mind blowing.

    I’ll pretty much listen to most anything these days that isn’t mass manufactured kiddy bubblegum.

    Like

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