I’m reminded of my first memory of music as I prepare to start my MA in music. My parents split when I was young and we lived thousands of miles away from my dad. He had a natural talent and could play guitar by ear and was an incredible musician. My mother remarried and I loved my stepdad very much. He was a huge fan of classic rock and oldies, like the Beatles. I remember how my parents would play vinyls of LED Zeppelin, Queen, Jimi Hendrix and Fleetwood Mac. Lots of music and concerts during my youth.
I picked up the guitar at age 13 for Mr. Vale’s class at Rutter Jr. High. I was discouraged by the bloody fingers, but still did well in the class. He exposed us to a lot of folk rock like Creedance Clearwater Revival and Bob Dylan. After I completed the class, my parents asked me if I wanted to carry on private lessons and I asked if I could get a drum set instead. The answer was no. It would have upset the middle class image, I’m sure. But I caved and suggested the piano as a compromise. The terms were accepted; I began private lessons and loved it. As you can imagine, life happened and began to take a different turn when I entered the army.
I’ve recently spoke to my oldest daughter who is working her way through college back home. She is definitely a musician, innately. She announced she was going to the Shins concert in California. She giggled and said, “Momma, do you remember who turned me on to them?” I smiled and said, “Yes I do, Presha” She mentions all the bands she’s heard from her step daddy and grins from ear to ear. Then she’s lovingly reminded of her real daddy, who passed away recently from cancer. He exposed her to Guns and Roses, Nirvana and Black Sabbath. We talk about all the music her daddy loved and wanted to share with her. It’s a bond that will always stay with her and will never be broken. All because of music.