not to be overly conventional, but let’s start this at the obvious place.
my dad loves music in a crazy way. and my older brother is much the same. so i can probably put part of the blame for my “condition” on genetics. and, of course, growing up in a house where there was so much loved of music meant that there was always music being played. both nature and nurture conspired to turn me into what i am. fortunately, the music they were listening to was pretty good.
dad teethed me on bowie, hendrix, joplin, the velvet underground, and all those other things your classic rock station plays or your adult contemporary station mixes in with the newer stuff. i wasn’t allowed to touch the reel-to-reel, so i had to wait for him if i wanted something other than a record or cassette. but he once had these pulsing lights plugged into the stereo so that we could lay on the floor in the living room and watch the lights pulse with the music. he was the person who introduced me to the concept of underground music and who would happily turn up “walk on the wild side” when it was just the two of us in the car. i’m fairly certain he was the one who gave me the “rise and fall of ziggy stardust and the spiders from mars” record. he is certainly the person who made sure i always had some device of my own for listening to music until i was into my 20s. which is really good of him when you consider that he didn’t really approve of all my music as i got older.
my brother was a little more cutting edge. i am pretty sure that i learned to dance in his bedroom whilst “safety dance” was on the radio. and i wore out his bowie “tonight” cassette multiple times. and feared breaking his cure records. and, honestly, loved this one quiet riot poster he had…i clearly recall, when i was quite young, realising that his musical tastes were part of what caused me to feel free to listen to and explore any music i wanted. he might not love to hear it, but that time we were driving through the streets of anchorage in the early 80s and i saw a boy with a mohican and wanted that hair for myself…it was my older brother’s influence that inclined me to feel pretty okay about that.
those are the early years. i’ll get to the pre-teen and older years later. though i think we’ll have to pass through a story about hearing loss first. but now you know why it was inevitable that i end up in love with music, and with rock music in particular. just in case you were curious…