I was on a web site the other day and there was this demographic poll, I decided to skew everything and go ahead fill it out. Well, when it came time to fill in the age I had to stop. 50 + was the last box. Oh no, I’m now in the last box. That’s right, I turned 50 last month.
I know what you are thinking, “What? You don’t look a day over 40.” I know! That’s why this birthday has been a little harder than I expected. 50 is supposed to be old. I don’t feel old. Heck, what 50-year-old goes to see Mumford & Sons live? Me. But still, here I am checking that stupid last box.
I think checking that box means that I have lived and experienced a lot of change. I was thinking about when I first fell in love with music. I had the turntable and about 150 LPs sitting between the speakers and the amp. After saving my money and going to Tower Records to lay down my hard earned $5 for the latest release I had been waiting for, I would go home and put the speakers on the floor and listen with my head strategically placed between them. Music would take over as I read every word on that 12” sleeve. Music moved me.
It still does. The purchasing experience is different – now I sit behind a desk and surf through iTunes or Amazon looking for the newest and latest. Or sometimes I stand behind my son as he plays me this latest find. But it’s usually through a good pair of computer speakers instead of stereo components. The time to lay on the floor and let the music take over has changed, but good music still can take over.
When I first walked into a recording studio in 1978 (yeah, I know you weren’t even alive then) there were 24 track tape machines played back through a 72 channel Trident board with stacks and stacks of outboard gear. The studio had iso booths and tracking rooms so the sound would be pristine. Today most records are made in a Mac computer with all the gear in Pro Tools or Logic and you would be lucky if there was more than one room in the “studio.” Heck, most studios nowadays are basements or rooms over the garage. Even though the recording method has change, great music still lives on.
What I realized hitting this age is that throughout my life music has moved me. Even though the way it is recorded, sold, marketed and consumed has changed music still moves me in ways that no other art can. Even though it has moved from Supertramp and Boston to Damien Rice and Mumford & Sons I still get a thrill from hearing great music.
I feel incredibly grateful that I have spent over 30 years working in an industry I absolutely love. Even though I have moved from being the young punk to “industry veteran” there is still a thrill in listening to great music.
What about you? What music moves you?
By the way, I lied. I checked the 40-49.
I was in denial.