Thursday, 24 April 2008

The Crap These Kids Listen To Today...

Sometimes I think that if I went back to my seven-year-old self in 1995 and played him some of the tracks I listen to these days I wouldn't have believed me. I also probably wouldn't have hung around long enough to listen to the tracks, those being the days of Stranger Danger and all that crap. Whatever happened to always relying on the kindness of strangers?

Then I think forward to the summer of 1997, when a nine-year old me bought his first single - Will Smith's fantastic 'Men In Black', from the film of the same name. If I played him a track or two of Santogold, or maybe some M.I.A. - even a little bit of Neon Neon, the young me would have ran straight back into Wimbourne Minster's little music store to get his money back. "No way am I growing up into that guy!" I would say to my parents later, "It's back to Billy Joel for me!" As it happens, I still rank Billy Joel as the greatest singer-songwriter ever to grace 20th Century music - but the point is this:

As a white, middle-class suburban kid from a village in Sussex, it never seemed possible that I would listen to some of the bands I listen to today. Even as a young teenager, when I learnt more about the world, I still wouldn't have seen the day where I could be listening to the music I listen to right now and not be a chav, or some equally blasphemous sportsgear-wearing idiot. Somehow going from Stereophonics decidedly middle-of-the-road Just Enough Education To Perform to getting bored of music in clubs because I've been listening to it for three months already didn't seem viable.

I'm glad it became viable at some point though. I have no idea when. But I like it this way - for the first time this year my Summer Mix will be split into two parts - the laid back and lazy indie that was once scattered evenly across half a cd, and the upbeat ecstacy-driven (that's the state of mind, not the drug) second cd - something for the real summer. Something I can be proud of, and my seven-year-old self can wet himself over. Hell yeah.

mp3: 'Paper Planes' by M.I.A.
mp3: 'You'll Find A Way (Switch and Sinden Remix)' by Santogold

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