Hi my name is Stuart and I’m a music addict. There I have said it. Phew…
Don’t know when it started. Growing up I was surrounded by various lines of music. Both mom and dad were never musos of any great proportions. I mean my dad’s idea of music was a Sunday afternoon lying flat on his back after a few too many tins blaring the bagpipes of Scotland cassette tape he had at full blast and then +1. I think the neighbours must have groaned and rolled their eyes every time. Put it this way no-one ever argued with dad in Durban. Firstly because he was a formidable human being and secondly no-one could understand a word he was saying thanks to his thick scottish accent
Mom used to love a good dance session and has a real love for music. She always played some great stuff back in the 80′s + 90′s. Roxette, Beach Boys, Eric Clapton, Roy Orbison, The Stones (Angie and Gimme Shelter are flawless), Fleetwood Mac, The Four Tops (dad’s favourite), and Phil Collins (Genesis). Man some of those tunes still make me smile when they come down the earphones into my brain lounge.
So these were my “formative” years. They were good ones. So so good. I can remember some parts that were funny looking back at them now. I had a denim jacket when i was 12 years old that had numerous Guns and Roses patches ironed onto it and I used to cruise the streets of the Bluff with an American bandana on my head or hanging loosely from my back pocket. With my latest mixtape in my hand heading to a mates house. Wow. That is tragic.
We used to create tapes off of the radio. I would sit and hear a song and run over to the tape deck to push the play and record buttons simultaneously and then hang around and try and stop it without getting to much DJ interference going. I got to 12 and Metallica took over my life for a year solid. These guys were heavy. I loved them. I would air guitar the living crap into my crotch. I used to have friends who had older brothers. They would be in their bedrooms when I visited listening to even heavier stuff and their dark rooms had the freakiest posters around. Some of those posters really burnt images into my brain, they where whack. Megadeth comes to the fore and the below poster is the culprit. As a youngster it totally threw me. It’s freaky man…
Parents divorced and we moved south. I was 13 and my music tastes got steered in a totally new direction. I had gone from the darker stuff to stuff that was groovy and timeless. My cousin Carryn who at that stage was around 17 was listening to Violent Femmes and Pearl Jam. Blister in the sun baby. I got a copy of that cd and never looked back, it was hammered and then some. Pearl Jam was the same. At that stage I remember Carryn getting the new Vitalogy Album. This was their third studio album and a good time to be a Jam fan. So from there it grew and grew. I now have a range so diverse it”s scary. I love it. I love music period.
There two parts to music. The sitting down and listening and/or sweaty writhing in the club, whichever you fancy. Secondly is live music. Taking these albums and songs and riffs and throwing them into a venue filled with sweaty people. My first ever gig of any significance was Skunk Anansie playing at the local university hall. There were some local dj’s playing support and we were off our heads after some good time drinking in the sun earlier in the day. So we in the hall now and it’s getting close to the main act, all of a sudden the lights go out. The place is pitch black. It stays this way and all of a sudden this insane bass line starts working it’s way through the crowd. It’s serious. Board short shaking bass. Charlie Big Potato is the name of the song and it’s my first taste. All of a sudden the lights start blazing and on runs Skin the lead singer. She is tiny but the voice and where it comes from leaves you just rooted to the ground and dumbfounded!! So the entire gig flies bye and I’m left at the end of it with this massive smile and memories stacked in the trunk. Wow!!! I need more.
So that is where it started. I’ve since been to close on 40/50 gigs and still going to more. Granted my heavy gigging days were in London as both availability of quality acts and price is incomparable. I’m still going to a few in Brisbane but they pricey man so you have to really pick carefully. I’ve been to most of the artists I’ve ever wanted to see but there are still a few I need to tick off and new ones pop up weekly/monthly. Some of them are below (you don’t have to read them all)
- Dave Matthews Band
- Pearl Jam
- Bruce Springsteen
- Skunk Anansie
- Ben Harper
- Eddie Vedder
- Ryan Adams
- My Morning Jacket
- Counting Crows (they were crap)
- Bryan Adams
- The Raconteurs
- John Butler Trio
- The Prodigy
- Biffy Clyro
- Johnny Clegg
- Goo Goo Dolls
- Eddy Grant
- Linkin Park
- Smashing Pumpkins
- Justin Townes Earle
- Arcade Fire
Another debate is what is good music. It’s a personal thing. You get guys wishing for a return to the 80′s. Wanting a return to the free loving days of the 60′s. Young people want heavy bass lines with catchy hooks. Old people think it sucks. Young people think old people suck. It’s a never ending circus I reckon. The reason we all so passionate about “our” taste in music though is because this music in part becomes the soundtrack to our lives. We defending our tastes cause we are so attached to them. I have attached so many feelings and emotions to music I’ve listened to over the years. I hope some of you feel the same way.
I hear Ice Ice Baby start up and I immediately transport myself back to my grans little house in Port Alfred (i must have been 11 or 12) where I would stand in front of the radio and rap back every single world whilst holding my “mic” in my hand and doing some bone grinding moves that would disable me today if I even tried. Dave Matthews’ solo album Some Devil kept me sane on the nightbus that I used to catch home at 3am every morning in London after working on the door and helped me focus on my long term goal of saving up to get married to the girl of my dreams. There are countless more and that is awesome. I’m a fan of awesome.
If you ever in need of some new music/artists/groups to listen to then give me a shout. Like wise if you feel I’m missing out on something shout even louder. I consume music full stop. It’s late now and I’m off to bed, but just give this a go. Try find a new band/artist every week and throw their album onto your iDevice or in your car and start discovering. Never stop.
A day without music is a life not fully lived