Rock music is for old men…?

Now I may be twenty years old (going on twenty one), but I wouldn’t describe myself, nor will I ever be able to describe myself, as the sort of person who is able to keep up with, let alone to comprehend the latest trends in music. I consider myself to be a sort of semi-musician; I own a guitar and I enjoy playing it, but I’m not much good… Thus, instead of focusing my attention on becoming a rock star, I put this to the back of my mind, leaving the thought as something which often comes to me in a dream, always tempting but never nurtured.

Perhaps I was a realistic, if not pessimistic, teenager; once my dream of being a famous musician had been cast aside I took to rifling through my father’s record collection. So many hours of my teenage years were spent in blissful ignorance of any studying that I was supposed to be doing, preferring to spend my time exploring the annals of rock and roll history. Instead of Eminem or Britney Spears, I was nurtured on the music of such greats as Led Zeppelin, Pink Floyd and David Bowie. If you find yourself completely lost at the mention of these names then I don’t feel that I can blame you, as most of my friends used to turn around and laugh at me. If, on the other hand, there is some sort of bell ringing at the back of your mind which says “hang on, weren’t Led Zeppelin that band that did a song about some sort of stairway that leads to heaven or something?”, then you’re on the right track.

Even as I sit here furiously typing away now, I am attached to a pair of headphones which is blasting away the music of Led Zeppelin at a most likely unhealthy volume. Friends at school would often say, “You know, you really should have a chat with my dad, he loves that kind of music”. I had always thought that this was a bad thing, yet now I realise that if you love a certain kind of music and truly have a passion for it, then you are most likely to meet some very interesting people on your musical journey. I could sit here and write something about all of the new bands that are around at the moment, but I would a) have to lie about any knowledge in the subject area and b) be missing the bigger picture, that we should listen to the music we enjoy, not necessarily what someone else tells you is good.

As much as I sit here and talk about how good classic rock music is, the most interesting thing about music is that it is all about personal taste. I could never adequately describe just how important the bands that I listen to have been in shaping me as a person and influencing the choices that I have made. This is for me what is really so magical about music. No matter how diverse everyone’s tastes may be, we can all agree that we listen to the music that we enjoy, not only because we like it but also because it makes us feel something in a way that nothing else is able to.

I’m not saying that classic rock music is the only kind of music that you should be listening to, because that would be completely wrong, along with the fact that it isn’t the only type of music that I listen to. No one should be judged on the kind of music that they enjoy, even though mine may make me seem like an old man (old man Fry they called me at school), but once you’ve made a choice I’d applaud you more for sticking by it rather than allowing yourself to be influenced by others. I consider myself quite an open-minded person, a lot of friends have introduced me to bands that I would never have thought of listening to, but I still crawl back to good old classic rock when the times are tough.

Music is something that we take comfort in, like an old friend; we all have favourite songs or bands for the different emotions that we may be going through. I tried new things, some of them I didn’t like but a lot of which I ended up buying the CD, putting it on my MP3 player and listening to it on the bus on the way to school on a rainy English morning (which is pretty much every morning between October and April). Thus I would like to encourage you to step out of your comfort zone and try a bit of good old classic rock, you never know, you just might like it…