Who helped form your musical tastes?

Some bloggers have mentioned in the comments and posts on how they got into music or a certain song…on how they come to like a song or a type of music. I always enjoy it when someone says why or how they like a certain type of music.

It’s really interesting how many different influences we all have had through life. One thing going wrong in my history…and I could be blogging about the hidden wisdom of Osmond’s music. Some had older brothers and sisters who influenced them.

I didn’t have any brothers to influence me. I have an older sister with questionable musical taste (Osmonds). To be fair though some of her music did rub off.. like the band Bread and a few good pop hits of that time. I did though have a couple of older cousins (Greg and Janean) that were brother and sister. They influenced my musical direction more than anyone.

Janean was a very pretty hippyish girl of 16 who drove a Volkswagen Bug and wore flowery clothes. She was a hero of mine at that time. Greg, her brother was a young teen guitar player who lived for music.

When I was around 6-7 Janean would tell me about seeing the Monkees in concert when she was a kid in Memphis…and I would watch the Monkee re-runs. It looked like so much fun being in a band and later on I would be. She gave me her old singles and albums like The Monkees Headquarters and their debut album. The singles she gave me included Every Mother’s Son, Turtles, Joe South, Tommy James, and many more. She took time out to spend time with a 6-year-old dork who hung on her every word. Unfortunately, she died when she was 17 in 1975 and I’ve carried her passion for music and life with me to this day. I owe her a great deal.

When I was eight in that same year Greg exposed me to the Beatles. He got me started on my Beatles quest (Meet The Beatles) and soon I was reading every book and listening to any Beatle record my allowance would buy. I was lucky to have some very nice librarians in school. One, in particular, would call me over the intercom getting me out of class just to show me a new book. They would order Beatles and baseball books for me to read.

While reading about the Beatles I found The Who, Stones, Kinks, Cream, and all of those great British bands that started before I was born. I was telling CB the other day… My “Holy Trinity” of Rock bands are The Beatles, The Stones, and The Who. It’s from those bands I found all of the others.

I will add one more base…my dad liked Merle Haggard, Waylon Jennings, George Jones, and a few others and I credit him with my country taste. It took me a long time to dive into them as much but I did with a vengeance a little later on.

I will have to admit…this community we are all in exposes me to old “new” music as well as new music that I would have never heard…I guess our musical learning never stops.

I was told by a co-worker that he was confused about my music tastes. He stated I should not like bands that were popular before I was born…that it wasn’t normal…not natural… Well…I take that as a big compliment.

Who helped form your musical tastes?

 

Author: badfinger20 (Max)

Power Pop fan, Baseball fan, old movie and tv show fan... and a songwriter, bass and guitar player.

69 thoughts on “Who helped form your musical tastes?”

  1. You had an interesting journey. It’s heartbreaking that you lost your cousin. I can’t think of any specific influences, other than my parent’s records, and the ones my uncles loaned to them. (Mamas & Papas, Arlo Guthrie, Simon & Garfunkel) In my dad’s family, it was all rockabilly and country. (Elvis, Buddy Holly, Johnny Cash, etc.) I lived in a university town, and was hugely influenced by FM radio from that time. I had a babysitter who left her guitar with me between the days she sat with us. I never became proficient, but sort of learned what it was about.

    I haven’t seen that Everclear video. It’s fun. It instantly made me think of Bowling for Soup’s ‘1985’. 😀

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    1. Instead of FM radio I heard AM radio in my sister’s car. I can see by living in a University town could have an influence. I had access to Greg’s guitar and later on when I was old enough he help teach me to play. That does make an impression when you are that young and can just hold a guitar.

      I really like that song…and yes I agree about the video. Hard to believe its nearly 20 years old.

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      1. Oh yea Sam…I hope he is reading lol.

        When I first held a guitar I was in heaven…then I figured out…this isn’t easy.

        I thought in second grade that the Monkees were still together…I was heartbroken when I learned they broke up. I was one naive kid. Greg told me right away…now the Beatles are not together anymore before I heard them.

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      2. Haha, *waving* to Sam.

        True about guitar. I realize now that I don’t have the long fingers the best guitarists have. But also, I didn’t practice, so I had no chance.

        I remember being in denial that Sonny & Cher were splitting up. I think they were already divorced by then.

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      3. The blisters on my fingers were terrible at the beginning but they finally went away. I had some one pushing me to learn so I didn’t quit…not pushing in a bad way.

        Sonny and Cher…they are one of my first memories…of Cher sitting on the piano.

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  2. That’s a great story about you carrying on a musical legacy for your cousin!
    I’m sure she would be proud Max
    I basically at about the age of 11 when I discovered Kiss in 1978 at a friends house!
    That began the journey for me as like yourself I had no older brothers or sisters. I relied on friends and myself by buying magazines and to discover this stuff on my own

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    1. Thanks Deke…we were talking about this a while back. We both attached ourselves to a band…grew from there.

      I had a few old records…it explains why my music was a generation behind me lol.

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  3. My friends were in a band that they named the Fugs and all they ever did was practice as they never got any gigs. The drummer was great, the lead guitar was decent and the group was rounded off with a bass player and a lead singer. They played a lot of Cream and I enjoyed going to watch them practice, so they said that I could be their manager. Wow, I was in a rock group!

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    1. Did you ever try to learn any instrument?

      Being a manager…that is what we always needed. Musicians usually are not “go-getters” or they wouldn’t be musicians.

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      1. when I worked as a substitute teacher and had Band class, I thought it would be easy to play the drums. This kid showed me how to hold the sticks and I couldn’t get it, as I think I am uncoordinated. You certainly don’t want to hear me sing.

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    1. I like some of that genre you were introduced to. In the eighties I listened to Black Flag and of course the Ramones.

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  4. Hey Max, I was influenced by everyone from my cousins who grew up with BeeGees, Beatles, Brit rock, to the guy who installed our stereo – he included a “Greatest Hits” album of blues. I listened to radio from a young age, and music was part of my life from before I went to school. Later, friends introduced me to different artists. I used to frequent record stores and always kept an ear open for what they played. It was a great way to get introduced to new music.

    Stay safe and enjoy your weekend,
    eden

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  5. Typical influences here: older brothers, an uncle, and a friend’s older brother. But really my interests pretty much bloomed way beyond what I ever heard at home. They lit the fuse, and my passion turned into an expensive habit on my own. As for your co-worker, does he think it’s odd that people still listen to Beethoven and Mozart? I don’t think any of us were around when they were doing their thing.

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    1. When I wrote the beginning I thought of you because you have talked about your older brothers…which that was a great thing to get you started…expensive habit yes! My allowance only found the record store.

      Oh yea I have given him grief about it believe me.

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  6. A great, and touching writeup Max. Interesting question too. I could write pages but I’ll try to be brief. My parents both loved music, usually seemed to be a radio on in house or car when I was a kid. My mom seemed to like pop, my dad back then seemed to prefer older country. First album I remember specifically was ‘Sgt Pepper’ – the cover grabbed me. My mom played it a lot when I was young. I have an older brother who was a 70s hard rock/prog rock fan and I heard things like EL&P and Pink Floyd eminating from his room. Mainly though, as a kid I was very sickly (thankfully by my college years I’d gotten to be pretty healthy as a horse, for the most part) so I was in my room, sick a lot of time and when I was about 5, I was given my own transistor radio. I had CHUM – the Toronto “top 40” station- on endlessly as a kid, listening to all that 70s AM radio stuff I still love. From there, it was my own little stereo with record player by mid-70s and began to hear FM , and then a lot of alternative rock from CFNY in Toronto in 80s, especially a 2-year stint working nights in a hotel.

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    1. Cool Dave thanks for replying…it’s interesting in all of our histories…on what could have changed it…and how we got here.
      You had your AM radio in your room…mine was mobile in my sisters car…being in your room so much you did have time to soak it in…too bad you were sick a lot though.

      You did have more of a vareity than I did for sure. I can be obsessive-compulsive at times…when I latched on to the Beatles I really latched on lol.

      I guess my cousin Greg took the place of the brother I didn’t have.

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      1. Musically I feel so lucky growing up then when AM radio was basically close to genre-less… CHUM’d be spinning Charlie Rich then BTO then Eagles then Spinners then…well, you get the idea. Exposed me to a lot of different types of sound.

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      2. I just looked up CHUM…you know I love to know what happened to things…they were around a long time… from the mid-50s to the mid-80s. You did get a huge variety.

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      3. They were an institution in Toronto… they actually published physical little pamphlets each week when I was a kid with the “top 30” , I used to have a number of them (would be a very cool collectors item if I still did). think the station might still be around, but talk radio. They launched CHUM-FM around ’72 or so I think, originally a kind of prog rock/album cuts station, by time I began listening to it it was like mainly pop rock but with some hard rock and some alternative (an 80s version of the AM station sort of… Moody Blues and Roxy Music coupled with Sex Pistols and Depeche Mode) but by late-’80s was “music at work” kind of easy listening. Not easy to me, mind you…

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      4. I love hearing about businesses like that. Talk radio really took over the airwaves for a long time everywhere. It’s like no one wanted to hear music anymore. Now with Satellite with stations tailor made for people…they don’t stand much of a chance.

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  7. Beautiful idea for a post! In my case, it mainly comes down to three people.

    I also have an older sister. For the most part unknowingly at the time, she exposed me to some beautiful music when I was 7 or 8 and she was 13 or 14. Among others, she owned the following gems on vinyl, records I dig to this day: Tapestry (Carole King), Deja Vu (Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young), Simon & Garfunkel’s Greatest Hits, America’s Greatest Hits, Santana’s Greatest Hits and Wish You Were Here (Pink Floyd). It’s actually kind of interesting, because in general, I wouldn’t say our tastes are the same, at least not from today’s perspective!

    Next I need to mention my guitar teacher, who simply was a cool dude. In addition to introducing me to the classical guitar, which let’s be honest can be a bit dry at times when you’re a 12-year-old, he showed me basic guitar chords from the get-go and songs I could play with it. The Beatles were all over the place! He also was the person who took me to my first concert, which was a great German Beatles tribute band called The Beatles Beat Band. I guess I must have been 15 or 16 at the time. When I was 17 or 18, my guitar teacher also helped me get started on the electric bass. Without him I would never have played in a band!

    Last but certainly not least I must highlight my grandpa – yep, you read that right! My grandpa was a retired high school music teacher and pianist. When he found out one of his grand children was interested in learning an instrument, he was over the moon. For years, he and his wife had unsuccessfully tried to get their own child (my dad) to pick up an instrument. I believe attempts included the flute, piano and the violin. Eventually, they realized my dad simply wasn’t interested in learning an instrument and fortunately gave up – because while it’s always great okay encourage, you really shouldn’t force it!

    Anyway, my grandpa literally financed all my instruments in the early days, including my Spanish guitar I used for classical music, an Ibanez Western guitar I own to this day (which still sounds mighty great!), and an Ibanez electric guitar (basically a copy of a Gibson Standard). There’s more. Every time he came to stay with us, one of the first things was to come to my room and listen to anything I had recently learned. And here’s the amazing thing. We’re not only talking classical music, which needless to point out was closest to his heart. He would also endure my early attempts on the electric guitar – with my Tube Screamer cranked up to the max, playing stuff like Smoke on the Water or Day Tripper.

    My grandpa was an incredibly open-minded person. Not only when it came to music but in general – a value I believe her has passed on to me. While I have to imagine he must have cringed on the inside when I would try to play electric guitar (which I never was very good at), he never showed it. What he showed my instead was his happiness that his grandchild was making a serious attempt to learn an instrument.

    Let’s put it this way, John Lennon and Paul McCartney are two of my greatest heroes of all time, and so is my grandpa!

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    1. Thank you! You Christian…had a cool grandpa! No doubt about it! Anyone that could endure Smoke on the Water by a new guitarist who is not a music store employee has got my vote for an outstanding person.

      Your sister did expose you to some good music and that made a layer in your musical tastes. I didn’t start learning guitar until I was around 15…it’s cool that you started that early. Him taking you to that concert must have really cemented the Beatles love for you.

      I started on bass in a band as well. My other guitar playing friend was better than me so I switched to bass. My first bass line was CCR Down on the Corner that I learned by myself…I was really proud.

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      1. My first band was a blues band. Frankly, these guys were much more experienced than I was. But I didn’t want to be a slacker, so I practiced like a madman and, I guess, impressed with them with how well prepared I came to the rehearsals.

        One of my first bass lines I learned as part of my role in the band was “Tin Pan Alley”. We covered the Stevie Ray Vaughan version. Our lead guitarist was a Vaughan fan and did a pretty decent job playing Stevie’s cool guitar fill-ins. He also knew how to play Scuttle Buttin. “Thrill Is Gone” was another of the early tunes I learned.

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      2. Oh cool! I was lucky…our band was all on the same level pretty much. The guitar player who was a huge Lindsey Buckingham fan…he still is…played like him and Scotty Moore combined.

        The good part is that made you better playing with those guys.

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      3. Yep, I would say it definitely helped. And it also prepared me for my second and last band, which without meaning to brag at all was a few notches up.

        The founder who is still a dear friend wrote his own songs. So we played a combination of originals and covers. At some point, we even had professional ambitions and recorded demos in his home studio. We sent the tape to a record company. That’s where things stopped, at least for the band.

        While I had a period in my early ’20s during which I dreamed to become a professional musician, in retrospect I’m glad it didn’t happen. I simply wouldn’t have been cut out for the brutal music industry, not to mention I was moderately talented at best.

        My friend actually went on to make music his profession but on the production side. He had a young partner who was a professional drummer and they produced a few things. Eventually, they specialized in audio plays. My friend is now retired.

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      4. I was in two bands that had the talent to actually make a lot of noise. We were approached by an owner of a small record company but he would have owned our self written songs and I think that is all he was after. We passed on that.

        Yea the record business is brutal…not to mention the endless touring. We were the house band at a club…playing every weekend from 8pm to 3 am in the morning. It made us tight but I was worn thin.

        It’s hard work doing that. In the early nineties I just realized…this isn’t for me anymore…well taking it seriously as a career. I still played, wrote songs, and now I Cubase to record if I want to.

        That is so cool about your friend .He got to do pretty much what he wanted…at least work in the industry.
        He must have done well to retire!

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  8. That is a great question. I think everyone was influenced by someone. I am 7 and 8 years older than my sister and brother and they have told me I have influenced their musical tastes. With me-my dad was a country music fan- I never saw an album that wasn’t country or bluegrass in his collection- and he liked the greats- Hank/ Johnny/ Merle/ Buck/ his favorite was Bill Monroe. I am fans of all of that still. In high school I met my friend Andre and he turned me on to The Beatles – after that it was pretty much a journey on my own. I would buy rock mags and books and discovered a lot of music that way. …. I think that is odd that it wasn’t normal to like music before your time. Maybe for the pedestrian music listener that is true.. I don’t know.

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    1. Just as much as listening…reading is where I found a lot of things…and you also I think. You mentioned it today in your Astral Weeks review. Reading about someone and then going to listen…whether whoever was mentioned in a book or an anecdote and seek them out…Same way about me reading a book about Clara Bow and then finding Keaton, Chaplin, and the Marx Brothers.

      The only bluegrass I was exposed to while young was on the Grand Ole Opry I would hear at my granddad’s house. I played it some while in my twenties…let me tell you…it’s NOT easy. I can see it influences everywhere after I played it.

      Sam is his name and yea I give him grief.

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      1. One influence on my musical tastes I forgot to mention- The Beatles- reading about who they liked -well if they approved of someone they must be good. I got into Dylan via The Beatles.

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      2. Same with me also… The first real book I read about them was the Hunter Davies book and that is where I found Dylan…the other books were quick publicity books.

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  9. In my late teens I went (for reasons we need not go into!) for 12 months with no radio or music player of any sort and all we sang was Gregorian Chant – every day. It had a huge effect on the sounds I hear in my head even today! At the end of the year I turned the radio on and it was playing Jose Feliciano singing “Windmills of Your Mind”. I’ve never heard anything so spectacularly magical! It’s funny all the different roads we all take, Of course, the Gregorian Chant year didn’t stop me from singing in my bad voice “Does Your Chewing Gum Lose its Flavor on the bedspost over night”!

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    1. I was hoping you would answer this. After a year of that…and I’m not putting down Gregorian Chant but from what I know about it…it’s not exactly cheerful…it’s more of a monotone…geez no wonder it sounded great.

      “Can you bend it like a fish hook just in case you get a bite”…yep I know that one! Lonnie Donegan. I found him by reading about the Beatles influences.

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  10. “Wellll … Shakin ‘It Baby Now … (Shakinitbabynow) … Twist and Shout … (Twistandshout) … Come On Come On Baby Now … (Comeonbaby)” – John roared his throat hoarse, George and Paul shook their freshly blow-dried hair in the background. They were in a good mood this afternoon on the hayloft in the farm of a small village in the Swiss midlands. They were called Robert, Klaus, and Fred, grabbing and beating imaginary chords and rhythms in the air while jumping around in the hay … It was Summer of 1963 and the world was still in order.

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  11. Interesting post. Hm… My parents were 18 & 20 when I was the accident and 19 & 21 when I appeared. They imprinted their music onto me, immediately. They were dancers…not professionally but, they shagged a lot. They could be partiers (is that a word?). Beach trips were numerous. My dad was (and you’ve already heard/read this) Elvis, Gene Pitney, Ricky Nelson, Everly Brothers, Cash, Johnny Horton, Brenda Lee, The Drifters, Beach Boys (or any beach music and the surf/drag genre)… My mom loved The Supremes (or anything Motown), Charlie Rich, The Four Seasons…later on, Boz Scaggs & George Benson. She liked disco. She couldn’t stand Elvis movies, tho…LOL! I played all of their albums & 45s.

    The house always had the radio on. First, it was what is termed now as “AM Gold”, then FM. They had this gi-nourmous Queen-Anne style radio/album stereo cabinet with woven brass speaker covers. My mom told me about laying on the floor next to it while pregnant with me. So, I was imprinted with music in the womb.

    My maternal grandmother was raised on a tobacco farm, then ran her own chicken farm. She love old bluegrass and country. And, as a Primitive Baptist, her church sang without any form of musical instruments. She adored it but, they all sounded like dying cows in a hail storm to me. I remember her having some albums like Herb Alpert (all given to her…I don’t think she ever stepped foot in a record store in her life) and country compilations. I remember hearing The Wabash Cannonball and May The Bird of Paradise Fly Up Your Nose. Speaking of, my dad had many funny records…all 45s…The Witch Doctor (David Seville), Sheb Wooley/Ben Colder pieces like The Purple People Eater or Fifteen Beers Ago. My parents made the mistake of buying me a Ray Stevens album. After the 100+ rendition of Guitarzan on my little box record player, the album disappeared. I had a family friend ask me some years later, when I was in my 20s, if I wanted it back. LOL! I didn’t remember it disappearing. LOL! I also had a large collection of Disney albums at one time (my mom got rid of a LOT of my childhood toys, books & albums).

    The very first album I ever bought on my own was a Surf & Drag compilation…that I still have to this day. The next album I wanted, with my mom’s help, was Grease. The first 45 I ever bought was Don’t Give Up On Us by David Soul at a Woolworth (remember those?).

    Past all that, I got a lot of influence from classmates and, later on, co-workers. My maternal cousins were scattered all over the place and my paternal cousins were much younger than I was (I’m old enough to be the mother of one of them). I do have a much older maternal cousin that played the guitar and I remember her playing & singing Puff The Magic Dragon to me.

    The above is why I call myself eclectic. I can find something in every genre from musicals to new age to country to rap to jazz to rock to metal to blues to funk to classical to big band to disco to punk to a cappella to folk and beyond.

    God, I’ve written a book. Sorry, Max…

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  12. That is fine… I am very surprised at the replies that I have gotten so far. I was expecting maybe 3 or 4 and I never expected this many. It’s cool that it seemed hit something with people.

    That is hilarious that the album disappeared…and I can see why! That man can get on my nerves quick. The one I remember the most is The Streak… I remembered on Hans reply that I made about the bluegrass I heard as a kid in my granddad’s house. I see that you got that also.

    Yes I do remember Woolworth. We had one in downtown Nashville. The building is still there and now they have what is called… “Woolworth on 5th”…a restaurant.

    I didn’t’ meet many people who shared my musical likes until high school. In second grade while they wanted to hear The Old Grey Goose is Dead I wanted Paperback Writer.

    A book is always welcomed.

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    1. I almost missed this. Your reply didn’t show up.

      I got a lot of music from Woolworth and a place called Stereo Village…both of which was in our only mall. Miss those days, muchly.

      I understand kids not understanding musical tastes. I remember carrying some of my dad’s 45s to a party at a neighbor’s house. The others thought I was weird. Well…I am (embraced as an adult) but, it was disconcerting as a child.

      Ray Stevens…yeah…you have to take him in small amounts. The radio wore out The Streak. Apparently, I was really attached to Guitarzan…”Shut up, baby! I’m tryin’ to sing!” LOL!

      My maternal grandmother, at one time before I came along, played a banjo and her younger brother, Charlie, played a fiddle.

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      1. I had an obsession with “Brown Eyed Girl.” I still do. When I was 18 I would play it over and over…I would do it at work or in the car with friends. If they could have trashed the tape they would have…I never get tired of it.

        I do remember Woolworths also. I didn’t go there though as much as you did. I got my records at a local place in Ashland City called Sounds and Scenes and the dime store. I really miss those places.

        Yea I remember in 3 and 4th grade my classmates listening to Elton John and I was listening to the Beatles. They couldn’t understand it…I guess at that age they wouldn’t…How I remember that I don’t know.

        Not many in my family knew how to play…just make them.

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      2. Heh. I suspect that “sha-la-la-la-la…la-tee-dah” over & over again was as annoying as the Stevens’ monkey sounds. 😆 The things we carry with us…

        In 3rd & 4th & 5th, I remember Elton all over the radio. I was still listening to my dad’s 45s & albums.

        I guess your family was all about the crafting…which is a good thing.

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      3. Yea I only have one cousin who has played piano all of his life. He was in bands that opened for Sawyer Brown and others. He is great…
        Yes Elton was everywhere…. Queen is when I started to pay attention to bands outside of the Beatles.

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  13. Great read! It is fun hearing about people’s influences. Mine was an older brother. 3 of them actually. One brother was huge in to Kiss, his whole bedroom was plastered with their pictures and posters. He has all their albums on vinyl or 8-Track and I listened to all of them. Another brother got me in to Def Leppard and then a third brother got me in to Fleetwood Mac and bands like the Bee Gees. And let’s not forget my sister as she took me to my first concert, Rick Springfield and I took her to Def Leppard concert. So I had it coming from all around with Rock and Pop.

    And my parents had a little influence too, my dad was in to New Age, world music and my mom was softer pop like Air Supply so there are hints of their taste in mine as well. My parents didn’t discourage anything I was listening to and let me be me in what I liked. But MTV was probably an even bigger influence as we got that channel in the very early 80’s.

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    1. Thanks for replying! You had a very good balance! You got it all the way around with different kind of music and that is great.

      My parents didn’t discourage anything either and that is really important. I had to go to friends houses to see MTV because we lived in a rural area when it first came on…but yes I should have added that. It introduced me to new wave.

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  14. Gosh, this is tough, but I’ll go back to the early 80s when my dad’s 1972 Wurlitzer jukebox would play The Beach Boys all night long. Then came my first cassette tape – Huey Lewis and the News, “Sports.” Then, I would build Lego to my uncle’s CD of Pink Floyd’s “The Wall.” My first CD was AC/DC’s “Who Made Who.” I got into Aerosmith big time during high school. Ben Folds Five was my first “indie” experience (plus, I’m a piano player, so…), and I’d say indie rock (The National) continues to ride with me…

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    1. The fact you got to grow up with a Wurlitzer is cool in itself. Indie rock was/is a great thing. You get a modern and older influence out of that.
      Thanks for reading Bernie. I got quite a response out of this…more than I thought I would. It’s cool to think on how we got where we are at.
      Where did Billy Joel come in?

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      1. My wife and I saw “William Joel” (haha) at Coors Field almost a year ago, and I was blown away at talent of his backup band, his charm, and his ability to practically replicate all aspects of his older hits – live! He just blew me away, so I’ve read four different bios on him, haha! I give him credit on being a human being 🙂

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      2. LOL well that makes sense. I’m reading a book right now about the year of 1973 and it tells the story of him playing in the piano bar and trying to get out of a bad deal he signed.

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      3. I would like to see him. I have never seen him or Elton John. I only really like John’s early seventies songs…love those.
        I like a longer period of Billy Joels though.

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      4. I would like to see him. I have never seen him or Elton John. I only really like John’s early seventies songs…love those.
        I like a longer period of Billy Joels though…until the mid to late eighties sound ruined radio for me.

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  15. My older cousins, all girls, hooked me on the Beatles in the early 60s. I was 7 years old. Next came Tommy James. My first transistor radio hooked me onto countless pop songs, which is why I became a radio DJ after high school, although cut short when I joined the Navy. But my biggest influence was Ms. Sweet, my Music Appreciation teacher. I loved it all. Best class ever.

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    1. That is great that you had a teacher that helped that much. My librarians really helped me. I think it’s because they were Beatle fans also because they were older than me.

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  16. Apart from classical music (of which my listening is sporadic, and I was introduced to it at a very early age by my dad), I don’t think there was any one person who introduced me to music or influenced my tastes, at least not directly. What mostly got me listening to particular music/bands, etc, were the pirate radio stations and then colleges and their gigs I went to, though some of that was in a rather round about way… Let’s see… Zeppelin I got turned on to because there was a boy in college I fancied and he was into them, so of course I had to listen! My sister and her husband took me to the Pop Proms at the Royal Albert Hall (I think it was a birthday present, not sure) at which Zeppelin, Liverpool Scene and Blodwyn Pig played – my first live gig seeing Zep, but I think I’d already heard Blodwyn Pig and Liverpool Scene at the Roundhouse. She’s not really into hard rock so it was rather a suprise – but a very special one! I subsequently saw Zep at the R.A.H. once more, and once at The Lyceum.

    Another college I went to (I went to a lot, as I missed a lot of school as a kid and so had to catch up at various colleges at age 14 onwards. I sort of made a habit of it. My fave thing about going to college was the gigs and dances, haha!) was where I got into soul, particularly Motown and Stax. They had dances and played a lot of the records at them, and my fellow students came from a wide range of countries and cultures – the ones I mixed with a lot were Jamaican, so their tastes probably influenced me.

    Radio Caroline (a pirate radio station) and Radio Luxemburg (which was difficult to tune into as its signal wavered all over the place) were the stations I listened to most in the 60s. Then later BBC radio 1 had John Peel who introduced the nation to a lot of rather obscure bands (though which of them I particularly liked at the time, I don’t recall.) I do remember going over to visit a cousin and we’d sit and listen to John Peel’s show together on the radio in his parents sitting room.

    TV shows too… Ready Steady Go, in the 60s, was excellent and later The Old Grey Whistle Test had some great bands on it. It’s worth checking that out.

    In the 1980s I was able to catch up on a lot of good music I’d missed before, from a radio station called… wait for this… Alice’s Restaurant!! It was another pirate station but played really good music- and kept being closed down. (I recently saw a site raving about how it was the UK’s most famous station which, frankly, is total rubbish! Very few people knew of it at the time.

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    1. The two things I was going to ask you about was John Peel and Radio Caroline…I mean those are great scources you had. That is why I still love The Who Sell Out because of their tribute to Pirate Radio.

      I love the soul influence mixed in with Zeppelin and everything else.

      I’ve seen The Old Grey Whistle Test and I love that one. The announcer…forgot his name but it looked like a show for the artist. They treated them with respect. I’ve seen a few Ready Steady Go with The Who.

      Alice’s Restaurant….I thought they all died in the early 70s…I love the idea of Pirate Radio.

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      1. I’m pretty sure Alice’s Restaurant started in someone’s sitting room… it was very small when it started and had to keep being moved when they kept getting busted. (And probably not just for being an illegal radio station, haha!)

        Bob Harris was the host of O.G.W.T. Some really great performances on that show. I used to particularly love their New Year shows that would go on for absolutely hours.

        Latterly (since Youtube really) I discovered Beat Club which was a German show. I never saw it on UK TV when it was broadcast, I don’t think. But it’s very similar to Ready Steady Go in format.

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      2. Yes I found the Beat Club…Grateful Dead, Chuck Berry, and many more there.

        Bob Harris yes. I love watching old shows. My cousin is a huge fan of Lynyrd Skynyrd…in the south that is not unusal but they drew their inspiration from Free, Cream and the Stones. I do like some of their music.

        I guess with Podcasts you could have your own radio station now.

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  17. I got started young on music from my mom and grandparents. Mom all of the old crooners Dean Martin, Frankie Laine, Gene Pitney, Bobby Vinton, Bobby Vee, Brenda Lee, Steve Lawrence and Edie Gourmet, Nancy Sinatra & Lee Hazelwood, Ricky Nelson, also some classical kids albums including Bambi and Peter and the Wolf. Then came Elvis & The Beatles. As a kid I was given access to the record player so I was listening and choosing tunes for myself. Once my folks divorced and we moved, I think my mom joined Columbia record club and we got a bunch of country music, Glen Campbell, Roy Clark, Buck Owens, Marty Robbins, Patsy Cline. Grandparents had Frank Sinatra, Englebert Humperdink, old 78s that I don’t remember what they were (I wonder where they all went…). In the new neighborhood (age 10) the AM radio was on at all times and top 40, Motown, Jackson 5, Osmonds, all the rest. Around 17 I started listening to FM radio and AOR. Boyfriends have had a big influence. First ltr was a guitarist and liked CSNY, Joni Mitchell, Mahavishnu Orchestra, Chick Corea, Eric Clapton, Cream, Steely Dan. This was a jumping off place for my own search for new music.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. You had a really balanced diet of music. I also joined Columbia House and that helped me as a kid.
      You had everything covered really well! One of the best I’ve seen.

      Lisa I expected maybe 4 or at the best 5 replies…I loved how all of these people developed their music.

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  18. Nice write up Max. For me it was brother. He is about 5 years older and had a big record collection. He played in bands and had (mostly!) good taste. I can thank him for guiding my early musical intuitions, principal of which was a enduring love of the stones.

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    1. Thanks for replying. It is interesting on how we got where we are at. If one or two things didn’t happen and we might be different.

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  19. Great piece Max. I think all us music lovers have similar influences. When it comes down to it, my ear is the keepe of the gate. I dont even try to disagree with it. It always works for me. Keep up the listening. Still lots of music out there.

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