Tall Drink of Nerd: I’ve Got the Music in Me

 In *Archives, Amy Robinson

.

a blogumn by Amy Robinson

Music.  It’s everywhere.

Every day music is all around you; morning alarm, drive to work, soundtrack under your fav TV show.  Heck, Ernessa even does a daily blog about guessing song lyrics.  Sorry cotton, music is the real fabric of our lives.

Photo by Epiclectic
Photo by Epiclectic

Today I’m wondering who your musical influences are.  That’s a standard question usually reserved for rock stars when they make the cover of the Rolling Stone.  They answer with timeless, occasionally obscure, musicians in history but what I’m wondering is who, in your life, has influenced your musical taste?  Who introduced you to Opera or Punk or Reggae? Who took you to your first concert or gave you your first Parliament CD?

My Dad was my first influence.  He wanted to be a crooner, like Eddy Arnold, but life didn’t work out that way.  Though Dad’s job was construction, and being a father to 5 ornery Henrys, he had an overwhelming compulsion to croon. From the time my little pink ears could determine noise, I remember him constantly warbling snippets of old cowboy tunes or spirituals.  He has yet to sing a full song, of anything, all the way through. He wanders around the house intoning the first verse of Peace in the Valley, and then hums a little before moving into El Paso.  Because of him, I know half of the cowboy songs ever written.  Or I should say, I know half of the lyrics to half of the cowboy songs ever written.

My siblings contributed to the play list in my brain too.  My brothers brought in the 70’s roots rock, Sister #1 added Barry Manilow and Bob Seger then Sister #2 piled Styx and Journey on top of the list.

Sister #2, the ever-martyred middle child Janet, used to make up dances with me in our basement.  Since I was smaller when I was 7 and she was 11, and she was much nicer, she let me be the girl and would lift and spin me.  We were the definition of Solid Gold.

Various and sundry college roommates, boyfriends and girl friends brought in The Cure, The Smiths, Pink Floyd, Sarah Vaughn, Stephen Sondheim, Trip Shakespeare and a host of musical multitudes.  Which brings me to the biggest influence on the turntable, my husband, Seen.

When I met Seen, he was a rocker.  I was not.  He understood Megadeth, Metallica, Iron Maiden and Black Sabbath.  I mocked him for his “heavy” taste.  Then I listened as he discussed the music and why he liked it; the history, the production, the unique sound of each instrument and the talent behind it. I started to really listen.  He opened my ears and I savored each note, as I never had before.  We still have long discussions about what makes a piece of music, from classical to metal, work.  Now I relish each flavor within the music instead of just gulping it in whole tasteless pieces.

Then, there was Maria, the singing nanny who father brought in from the convent…oh wait… that’s somebody else’s story.

So who brought the music into your life, or the life into your music?  Who helped create the soundtrack of your life?

Recent Posts
Showing 8 comments
  • Janicpanny

    Yes, my early years were influenced by Dad and the music my older siblings listened to. My hubby & I liked much of the same music, but because of him I actually know who is singing the 70s and 80s songs I love. His library of tapes & albums was a large part of our "courting" and continued to grow with us. There was Lionel Ritchie, Huey Lewis and Genesis for our dating years and then our kids dancing with us to Gloria Estevan or listening to Moody Blues as we prepared for a night out. Now, I usually let my teenagers pick the station and SOMETIMES the volume when we're driving. For my son, it's classic rock including Black Sabbath or ACDC, but Boston is our middle ground – we're both addicted. My daughter prefers the upbeat Christian rock station – great way to lift the spirits.

  • Janicpanny

    Yes, my early years were influenced by Dad and the music my older siblings listened to. My hubby & I liked much of the same music, but because of him I actually know who is singing the 70s and 80s songs I love. His library of tapes & albums was a large part of our "courting" and continued to grow with us. There was Lionel Ritchie, Huey Lewis and Genesis for our dating years and then our kids dancing with us to Gloria Estevan or listening to Moody Blues as we prepared for a night out. Now, I usually let my teenagers pick the station and SOMETIMES the volume when we're driving. For my son, it's classic rock including Black Sabbath or ACDC, but Boston is our middle ground – we're both addicted. My daughter prefers the upbeat Christian rock station – great way to lift the spirits.

  • Janicpanny

    Yes, my early years were influenced by Dad and the music my older siblings listened to. My hubby & I liked much of the same music, but because of him I actually know who is singing the 70s and 80s songs I love. His library of tapes & albums was a large part of our "courting" and continued to grow with us. There was Lionel Ritchie, Huey Lewis and Genesis for our dating years and then our kids dancing with us to Gloria Estevan or listening to Moody Blues as we prepared for a night out. Now, I usually let my teenagers pick the station and SOMETIMES the volume when we're driving. For my son, it's classic rock including Black Sabbath or ACDC, but Boston is our middle ground – we're both addicted. My daughter prefers the upbeat Christian rock station – great way to lift the spirits.

  • Janicpanny

    Yes, my early years were influenced by Dad and the music my older siblings listened to. My hubby & I liked much of the same music, but because of him I actually know who is singing the 70s and 80s songs I love. His library of tapes & albums was a large part of our "courting" and continued to grow with us. There was Lionel Ritchie, Huey Lewis and Genesis for our dating years and then our kids dancing with us to Gloria Estevan or listening to Moody Blues as we prepared for a night out. Now, I usually let my teenagers pick the station and SOMETIMES the volume when we're driving. For my son, it's classic rock including Black Sabbath or ACDC, but Boston is our middle ground – we're both addicted. My daughter prefers the upbeat Christian rock station – great way to lift the spirits.

  • ernessa

    Sorry, that it took me so long to comment on this, but I've been thinking about this question all week. Strangely enough, I think the biggest influence on my musical upbringing was the fact that I had no musical upbringing. My parents had exactly 2 albums: Al Green and the soundtrack to "My Fair Lady." They also tended to listen to the news in the car, so everything that I discovered growing up, was b/c i took a shine to MTV and shows like "Friday Night Videos." Later on I worked in a music store and then in college, I would just buy the albums that I liked that my friends owned. ITunes, however, changed my life. Now I just buy stuff to buy stuff and a lot of of sticks. But weirdly enough, I would have to same that my hugest musical influence has been my own curiosity and open ears. And I just hope that my daughter will love music as much as I do, even if she's exposed to it all of the time.

  • ernessa

    Sorry, that it took me so long to comment on this, but I've been thinking about this question all week. Strangely enough, I think the biggest influence on my musical upbringing was the fact that I had no musical upbringing. My parents had exactly 2 albums: Al Green and the soundtrack to "My Fair Lady." They also tended to listen to the news in the car, so everything that I discovered growing up, was b/c i took a shine to MTV and shows like "Friday Night Videos." Later on I worked in a music store and then in college, I would just buy the albums that I liked that my friends owned. ITunes, however, changed my life. Now I just buy stuff to buy stuff and a lot of of sticks. But weirdly enough, I would have to same that my hugest musical influence has been my own curiosity and open ears. And I just hope that my daughter will love music as much as I do, even if she's exposed to it all of the time.

  • ernessa

    Sorry, that it took me so long to comment on this, but I've been thinking about this question all week. Strangely enough, I think the biggest influence on my musical upbringing was the fact that I had no musical upbringing. My parents had exactly 2 albums: Al Green and the soundtrack to "My Fair Lady." They also tended to listen to the news in the car, so everything that I discovered growing up, was b/c i took a shine to MTV and shows like "Friday Night Videos." Later on I worked in a music store and then in college, I would just buy the albums that I liked that my friends owned. ITunes, however, changed my life. Now I just buy stuff to buy stuff and a lot of of sticks. But weirdly enough, I would have to same that my hugest musical influence has been my own curiosity and open ears. And I just hope that my daughter will love music as much as I do, even if she's exposed to it all of the time.

  • ernessa

    Sorry, that it took me so long to comment on this, but I've been thinking about this question all week. Strangely enough, I think the biggest influence on my musical upbringing was the fact that I had no musical upbringing. My parents had exactly 2 albums: Al Green and the soundtrack to "My Fair Lady." They also tended to listen to the news in the car, so everything that I discovered growing up, was b/c i took a shine to MTV and shows like "Friday Night Videos." Later on I worked in a music store and then in college, I would just buy the albums that I liked that my friends owned. ITunes, however, changed my life. Now I just buy stuff to buy stuff and a lot of of sticks. But weirdly enough, I would have to same that my hugest musical influence has been my own curiosity and open ears. And I just hope that my daughter will love music as much as I do, even if she's exposed to it all of the time.

Contact Us

We'd love to hear from you. Please send us an email and we'll get back to you, asap.

0

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This