Friday, August 12, 2011

Growing Into Your Music

I can't believe how many different styles of music I've listened to throughout my life. This came to mind when The Tragically Hip's Courage came on the radio. As a Canadian I have to love The Tragically Hip, as a young adult I really do love them. However, if you would have asked me whether I liked them 10 years ago as a high school student I would have probably said no.

High School is where I really discovered music as something that represented who I am, who I would become. That's not to say that music is the only thing that defines me, but I am a firm believer that you can tell a lot about a person based on the music they do - or don't - listen to!

As a child I listened to what my parents listened to; golden oldies, soft rock, some classic rock. Thanks to them, I know all the words to (Sittin' On) The Dock Of The Bay by Otis Redding.

As a pre-teen I listened to the bubblegum pop groups; Backstreet Boys (who I saw in concert 3 times!), Spice Girls, The Moffats, Hanson, the list goes on.

Once I got into my teens I started listening to more complicated music where the lyrics actually mattered and the music wasn't over-produced. I listened to a lot of Green Day (Dookie, Nimrod, and Insomniac especially), Goo Goo Dolls were also frequently playing in my CD Walkman. I'd say though, that my favourite band in that era of my life was Our Lady Peace. My two favourite albums of theirs were and always will be Clumsy and Happiness...Is Not A Fish You Can Catch. These two CDs were permanent residents in my stereo or Walkman.

I stuck to the alternative style throughout most of high school but I also listened to whatever my friends were listening to; country, classic rock, even some christian rock. I enjoyed their music but never really identified to it the way they did - how angsty of me.

After high school I stuck with alternative but went into a different direction with it. I was finished with the angsty, anti-authority music that Green Day and co. had to offer; I moved toward a more mellow branch in the alternative world. I've pretty much stuck with this style although I really do listen to a bit of everything these days. My favourite artists from this genre are, without a doubt, Dave Matthews Band, Jack Johnson and Ben Harper.

I'm sure that as I continue to grow up my tastes will change at least a few more times. I'll listen to less pop/hip hop and more soft rock, I'll forget the lyrics to songs that I related to so well as a teen. Who knows, maybe I'll start listening to heavy metal...not likely.

Looking for Caller No. 9!

I'm sure we've all done it - tried to be that certain caller to win that amazing prize from the local radio station. Some of us have been lucky, some not so much.

I've been lucky a couple of times; I've won CDs, passes to local events, but my best and most memorable prize was concert tickets! It was quite a long time ago now - 2004 I think - and 93.9 Bob FM (in Ottawa, ON) was giving away REM tickets every time they played one of their songs. I'm not a huge REM fan but I do really enjoy their music and I was determined to win! I had the radio on in my room almost 24/7 and anytime an REM song came on I'd call the number. Most of the time I got a busy signal, once I was caller number 2 (they were looking for a different caller, though I don't remember which anymore). Finally, on the second or third day of the contest, I made it through and I was the right caller! I had one the tickets! I did it! I remember being so excited to have won!

After winning the tickets I called Jeff and told him. He said "you're kidding right?" I was a little miffed at his answer, why wouldn't he think that I could win a simple contest? He came over later that day and asked me again, "you really won the tickets?" I told him that yes, I had won the tickets and he looked disappointed. I asked him what was wrong and he pulled out a piece of paper. He had bought me tickets to the concert that morning, knowing how much I'd wanted to go to the show!

I was so thankful that he'd bought me the tickets, really it was so sweet of him, but at the same time I kind of shook my head, "why would you buy me tickets when you knew I was trying to win them?" I'd asked. He just shrugged and said he didn't think I'd actually win. Silly boys.

In the end it all worked out; I took a friend and we used the tickets I won and Jeff took a friend and they used the bought tickets. We all had lots of fun and it's one of those stories that I'll never forget!

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Hip Hopping Through Summer

As the days of summer start to trickle away and turn into the cool breezy days of automn, I take a look back at the past few weeks. What has kept me so busy? What have I enjoyed? What do I wish I'd gotten to do?

Life has kept me busy! Between being back to work, taking care of Jude, cleaning the house, visiting friends and family...time fills up quickly! I've enjoyed going to the cottage, reading quite a few books, spending some quality time with the people I love. I wish I'd gotten to do a bit more travelling, even around the area, just get out and explore the world around us. I made it out to Upper Canada Village last weekend and we got up to the cottage for Canada Day, but that's it. Hopefully during my holidays next week we'll manage to go somewhere. Maybe to Calypso Water Park or to Montreal for a day trip.

As for summer music, what do you listen to? I usually like something musically interesting; Jack Johnson, Dave Matthews Band, etc. This year, however, I have really been enjoying more of a dance beat; from Nicki Minaj to Ke$ha, Cee Lo Green and Bad Meets Evil. I think this is because I'm driving a lot - to and from work - so I need something to keep me going on my commute.

So enjoy the rest of your summer. Listen to some good music. Read some good books. Try to do at least one more thing that you wish you'd done this summer!