Music

I can’t think of a time in my life when music was not a strong component of my life. I can still remember some of the ditty’s we used to sing as children, then later in life with my own kids. As a young teen, I was honoured to sing in a church choir, now, I probably would only be asked to a session down by the swamps with a group of bull frogs! It is amazing as we go through life and remember certain songs, jingles etc that were associated with either great moments or even commercials. Do you remember “You’ll wonder where the yellow went when you brushed your teeth with Pepsodent”?

Not sure what kind of music I liked but I do know that music my parents would play was usually “not my cup of tea”. My parents were great “church-going people” and my mom played the piano, so sing-alongs were always happening in our home or in the car (in this case, we left the piano at home).  I was fortunate enough to grow up in the 50’s & 60’s so I remember Elvis on Ed Sullivan, of course the Mamas & Papas, Rolling Stones, Beach Boys, Jefferson Airplane, Pink Floyd, Led Zepplin, Crowbar, The Guess who etc. We used to be able to get into concerts for a pittance – often under $8.00.

Those were the days – or were they? Yes it was great to grow up with the fabulous music of the 60’s but as a decade it was truly a period of strife and anxiety. Sometimes I think that much of the 60’s and 70’s were lost simply due to the dramatic incidents of the day. This was however, a time in my life when Music seemed to mean more! Music was more than just a song, but almost an event. Every new album by the Beatles or the Stones or whoever was truly an event as we would discuss into the night as we listened, the meaning of each song and how it contributed to life – And this was before Dope!

As we entered into the mid-seventies, music became rather confusing for me. Up until this time my state had been more towards what we now call classic rock although I truly enjoyed the light sounds of the Mamas & Papas or the melodies of “Little Deuce Coupe” however something was rather missing and I couldn’t put my finger on it. It eas at this time that I opened my first audio store. Fabulous rock groups were in abundance – Dire Straits, Elton John, Eagles, YES, Traffic and on and on but after listening to it all day in the store, it was simply dreary to listen to it all night as well. It was during this phase that I began my seach for something different. Tried Jazz, George Benson was OK, Miles Davis was Great, wasn’t really into either Duke Ellington or “Satch”, tried some blues, got a copy of John Lee Hooker in the early 80’s – the one with Carlos Santana and hated it except the 1st cut with Carlos Santana (CD titled the Healer). Obviously was not very comfortable with any genre. As careers changed and kids grew, my listening changed from LPs at home to CDs in the car – mostly because I went through 2 $600.00 cartridges within one year! A lot of money in the 1980’s

At some point, music was very much in the “background” for me. Enter 2007 and I became ill, mostly from running a pack of cellular stores for too long. My life had to change – I mean had too! It is interesting that at this point in my life, I started to listen to some jazz and blues. I had been listening to Eric Clapton and his ilk, Diana Krall and her contemporaries but now I wanted more. Satch, The Duke, Stan Getz, Ella, Count Basie, Joe Turner, “Bird” all started to be come a huge factor in my life. And I simply bowed down to blues – Remember the John Lee Hooker album I spoke about earlier – it became one of my favourite albums!

Perhaps the greatest change that happened to me was that I now made time for myself to relax, to enjoy the music. All of you who read this blog have from some interest in music to a deep bond with music. Don’t be afraid to try new artists and genres. It is simply amazing how your world can open up. Stop using music as simply background noise. Actually listen to the words and melodies. You may even fall asleep to it!  Thanks for listening.

Gord