I’m wondering if I have fallen out of love with music.
Or, to be precise, new music. The discovery of it. The giving a go of new bands. The trying something new. I seem to have become as locked into the music of my formative years as my parents were when I was a kid.
Why does that happen?
When I was a teenager (though I came to record buying late) I was an avid music consumer. I would buy a batch of records every week. Singles, EPs, LPs, picture discs, I couldn’t get enough. I can remember going to a record shop in Birmingham and spending so much money that the shop assistant was kind enough to not ring the amount up on the till to save me from embarrassment. I must have blown an entire week’s wages in one go on rare records and collectibles. That seems so obscenely hedonistic now.
In no time at all I had built up an impressive collection of literally hundreds and hundreds of records (which I still own). They took over my entire bedroom. All of them boxed, alphabetized and inventorized. It was a collection that I lavished love and time on. And each weekend I’d carefully load up my turntable with my latest acquisitions, carefully wiping the dust off them with the special cloth I had bought for this purpose and savouring each hiss and pop of the needle swinging itself into the opening groove.
It was my life.
And then somehow, in the nineties, my expenditure dropped off, my interest waned and was pulled elsewhere. I moved on and got into other things. Books, computers, gadgetry, travel. The fact that the nineties were an awful decade for decent music only hastened me out of the scene.
And now, here in 2009, I’m somehow completely on the outside of it all. On the outside looking in but unsure of where the door is or if I even have enough interest to want to open it and step inside. A few new bands have caught my ear – The Doves, The Editors – but I haven’t gone as fanatically overboard on them as I did when All About Eve arrived on the music scene in 1985 or when Kate Bush released “Hounds Of Love” in the same year.
The passion for new music has left me.
My MP3 player is proof of this. The majority of its contents have been sucked from my CD collection and I’d say that 90% of that is from the eighties. I’ve become trapped in my very own time warp.
I’m no longer “down with the kids”. I’m looking at them and frowning at the infernal noise they listen to and dare to call music – much the same way, I suspect, as when my father just couldn’t appreciate the blisteringly fierce music of The Jam’s “Funeral Pyre” and dismissed it as tuneless rubbish. At the time his music of choice was Buddy Holly and Marty Robbins.
Is this the fate that has now befallen me?
Worryingly, checking my MP3 player this morning, I can’t fail to notice that “El Paso” is already on there...
*Sigh* It’ll be “Rave On” next.
And not in a cool way either.