Tuesday, November 8, 2011

It's time to make my boys a mix tape.

I have a lot of moments where the past intersects with the present in completely opposite ways.

Music, is so much more that the radio, where all I hear is Sleep Country commercials and "Black Hole Sun"

Music is so much more than a means to name drop the cool groups you listen to.

It's part of my DNA, and in someways, OK many ways, I am a bit autistic about music.

But that's a good thing!!!

I don't mean this to be boastful, braggy, or without modesty. I started playing by ear when I was 3. Soon piano lessons followed, and as it turned out I could carry a tune vocally as well. That's from my mother. She is a lovely soprano.I had a lot of fun singing at weddings and being the acolyte who led the church hymnals after a night of partays and sneaking out. So if you've known me a long time, you know most of brain storage is shelved with music. I can remember keys in the songs of life,up in my head, and often as a kid ,I would run to the piano to verify that it was indeed the same note. If you're going to have music in your head all day, it's a bonus when it's in the right key.

Now I ask you this:

Do you ever have those moments where you're with your 5 year old, or your 7 year old and you think you've entered the Twilight Zone of, "I can't believe I'm pushing my offspring around in a grocery cart listening to INXS "The One Thing" and I can't believe that this is what they are playing at the grocery store!!! Don't read me wrong. Total upgrade!!! I went to Trader Joes and rocked out to Billy Idol "Don't need a Gun" and The Kinks "Come Dancing" while my kids screamed for Pirate Booty and candy. The Kinks made the melt downs less annoying.

I've worked for the same company long enough to see a "Before": muzak and excessive piano renditions of "Satin Doll" And an "After" tasteful interludes of piano standards that we love and treasure ,co-mingling with Radiohead,"Let Down", a magical piece from OK Computer that was the highlight of my afternoon while getting coffee. This morning was an expception, the AM playlist (prior to store opening) was some sort of Time/LIFE Soft Sounds Mix (Micheal McDonald "What a Fool Believes"....I like that tune, and Air Supply "Lost in Love"...whatever.

I have to giggle sometimes when I'm doing my job, matching a foundation shade and listening to Led Zeppelin "D'yer Maker". I wanna belt out like Robert Plant, and I am thinking how many bottles of Bartles & James got drank up to this as a teenager, while some kids parents were out of town for the weekend. I just roll with it, when I'm talking about anti aging and "Boys Don't Cry" strums up... it's a bit surreal. But I love it!

My boys need mix tapes. Not a laptop that shuffles. Not a playlist where I have dragged the mouse and put songs in a certain order and there it sits on a screen. I will go to my dad's old pawnshop. Where I always got my gear as a kid. Our friend bought it from my brother after my dad died. Cassettes, or cd's to cassette. Whatever. I think it's still possible. I can't believe that I don't even know if something I did quite compulsively is still operational, without too much hassle! The hassle doesn't bother me.

I just want Wyatt & Charlie to experience how you can find music and keep music like you keep books. I will decorate them all colorfully and put some tunes together. I have not a clue if they will like the mix.

Wyatt, he's a mystery. Very little in the way of revelations about songs that make him smile. I do know that he likes "Heroes & Villains" by The Beach Boys. As well as "Boggis, Bunce & Bean", but if you start to sing along the auditory clamor is too much and he basically tells me to STFU.

Charlie, well he's my musical theatre fella. He could end up like his mom and spend many years in local productions of "Oliver", "A Christmas Carol" and "South Pacific". He doesn't mind if I sing to him.

A few years back I bought them "Maurice Sendak's Really Rosie". I had so many fun times listening to this. I had a grand time revisiting "Chicken Soup With Rice"! They were non plussed. Although, if you ever read the book "Pierre: A Cautionary Tale" you would almost think that kid was somewhere on the spectrum.

Tonight as we were driving home from Tacoma, all 4 us in the Ford, I had a hankering to listen to a few songs by The Verve: "Sonnet" & "The Drugs Don't Work". I remember being 22,23, I was Clay's girlfriend and this was the shit! That's a whole nother mix tape.

2011, here we are, on our way home, kids strapped in car seats, yelling about various sensory related pet peeves (all 4 of us), and I'm almost 37! I could end this by saying it's a bittersweet symphony, but I have heard it too many times. So have you.

I'll end this by saying that this: If my kids can figure out how to hold my phone hostage, and beat the angry birds out of it, they can learn how to press record and play.

Clay will show them how to make some RAD cover art ,with TMBG classics, saturated heavily on the playlist. But I will certainly be there to ensure a confusing blend of Hall n' Oates "Kiss on my List" and The Cure "Six Different Ways". Essentials every 6 year old should have in their tape recorder.

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