Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Our Own Yellow Submarine

It must have been the fourth or fifth grade, I don't remember which. But I remember feeling quite clever for figuring out how to play my parents records and record them on the tape deck, remember those old ones that were the size of a cake box with all the indicator lights and extra buttons.

I had spent a whole weekend converting classic rock from Vintage Vinyl to "modern cassette " for my state of the art Walkman for the very long bus ride home.

I will never forget the first time in my life anyone ever asked me what I was listening to. For two reasons; first because she was so cute and I had a massive crush on her. Second and more importantly because when I said "the Beatles" she said "WHO?"

Crush terminated...

I had always stammered a bit whenever we made conversation during the long ride home. Usually because I was nervous, but not this time. This time I hesitated, and stammered because I had never met anyone who didn't know who the Beatles were. Where had this poor sheltered girl been living?

As it turns out, I was the one who was out of touch with current events and popular culture. Apparently the Beatles were not within the acceptable boundaries of my generation. For the rest of the ride home and several more to come, we fired band names and song titles back and forth trying to find a common ground. As it turned out I was only into "her parents kind of music".

But it made sense, as I had learned everything I knew about music by my parents extensive record collection. My mom would open all the doors and windows and turn up stereo way too loud for someone her age. Later I spent hours going through every single record, song by song and finding so many gems that touched my soul.

They don't make music like that anymore.

When we first got Rock Band for the kids I wasn't interested. Not really into video games and I was in a real band once and that was enough. But they would always come a ask me to help them out with some "really old song" no one in the house had ever heard before and of course, I always knew it. Well that was all it took, I was hooked and blew off chores for a couple of days until I got my fix.

But it turned out to be a really fun family activity and we were able to share music with our kids, we have our own family band, now we all play and sing songs together. It reminded me of the way my parents were. Music was a big part of daily life, it always has been and always will be.

Claudia is not your average Mexican chick which is why I love her so much. She loves music as much as I do, maybe more. That argument continues. But not only did she know and love the Beatles but all the old school classics. Even ones like John Fogerty, James Taylor and CCR.

So I married her.

The whole family was eagerly counting the days till the Beatles Rock Band was released, and now playing those old classics was a flashback to my childhood, some really really good memories. The idea that my kids like these songs as much as we do and now we're all singing and playing them together, making new childhood memories is just so incredibly special.

Perhaps the most powerful hereditary magic there is.

Coo Coo Cachoo.


Anonymous said...

Right on bro! I have the same memories, I remember diging through the wooden fruit crate of clasic vinyl too... thats were I discovered Alan Parson's, Sly and the Family Stone, Ry Cooter, and Sabath... the list goes on and on, it ends with Queen (I was 8 or so). Today I spent the day in the park with Dom, we started at the slides terrorized the ducks and ended up in the mud puddles together, ...I remember that too, Im glad that Dom had me to do that with. He'll remember that, I hope when he's a dad he'll be able to throw his arms up in the air and say, "Oh well, what the heck" and give it a go for glorious memory sake! because shouting about not getting wet or dirty will prove to be futile at times... gotta just let go and remember who we were at that age. I had... we had fun!!

Anonymous said...

Funny you should mention this.

In about 1983, my son came home from high school all excited about this great new music he had just discovered, "Ya gotta listen to this, Mom, it's really amazing!"

I expected something I would find over-frenetic and confusing. But what did he play? "Eleanor Rigby."

I didn't have the heart to tell him.