Then and now…Yesterday, my sons and I cleaned the house and did a ton of laundry. Chores like that require you to crank the tunes, and so of course we had the XBox 360 blaring through the TV speakers the current heavy-rotation favourite: Midnight Oil.
I find it fascinating that three boys born in 1994, 1997 and 2000 could love this 1980s-90s band, and find nothing unusual about that. Back when I was 15, any song that was older than 6 months was “old” , never to be heard on the radio again unless it was part of a “discumentary” or perhaps the countdown of the year’s best songs. We’d hang onto our favourite artists through our record collections, but old records were hard to come by unless you had a big brother or sister.
Now, it seems to be pretty common to pick and choose your favourite artist from any era, thanks to 3 generations of rock and roll, combined with the magic of the Internet. Sure, there will always be kids who like the current batch of pop music the best, even if it is manufactured commercial music like Justin Bieber, Katy Perry or Bruno Mars. But since digital media makes music from any time and any country so much more available, why not pick exactly what you want?
I love our world where Peter Garrett rocks on like he’s not yet an Australian senator; where “War of the Worlds” is more likely to be a 1938 radio play, 1979 record or even an 1898 book than a 2005 movie; where good music in specific and good culture in general can be found anywhere and everywhere.
Now I have to go plug in my smartphone so that I can read Pride and Prejudice in bed, with the Kindle app on my Android…