14 April 2011

School of Rock

One of the best things about being a parent is the ability it gives you to shape your kid in your own image, to influence their taste and style, before their peers and the world gets hold of them.

Lately, we've been doing our best to expose the Doozer to as much (and as many different kinds of) music as possible (free of inappropriate language and sexual references we'd prefer he not yet learn). In the car, at home, we're doing our best to plug him into our extensive music collection. Which currently means, playing music for him almost exclusively the computer, sadly. This kid is doomed. His whole world is wired. And we're part of the problem. He knows the iPod, but I doubt he'd recognize a CD. What have we done?

In our meager defense, our stereo is too large for our current living room and we really have nowhere else to put it, so our CD collection has yet to be unpacked since we moved (two-plus years ago now) and my vinyl collection is currently collecting dust in my parents' basement.

What a sad state of affairs.

Anyway, we have not let these circumstances deter us from our mission of developing the Doozer's interest (and good taste) in music. The fruits of our labor were realized recently when we heard the most amazing sound through the baby monitor. There's nothing quite like being awoken in the morning by the monitor's crackling, followed by your child singing at the top of his lungs: "She's got a ticket to ride . . . she's got a ticket to ride . . . my baby don't care!"

Of course, there has been the occasional setback. The minor meltdown precipitated by our inability to rewind and repeat a favorite song heard on the radio. That the radio is something different than a CD or an iPod or the iTunes library on the computer was a bit much for the little guy to grasp and he really wanted to hear that Beatles song again.

(Thankfully, we had it at home.)

And just like the books that we are forced to read over and over, the Doozer gets fixated on particular songs that we must then listen to a multitude of times. No matter how many times we try to explain to him that all of Cardinology by Ryan Adams and the Cardinals is pretty great, he still insists on just hearing "Magick" over and over and over again. Though, hearing your kid sing along to a song featuring lyrics about "missile strikes" and "mushroom clouds" is pretty hilarious.

Don't judge us.

Apparently he has not become acquainted with (or is not bothered by) the concept of a song getting stuck in your head. He seems to like that sort of thing. Little weirdo.

And while I did manage to convince him of the merits of "California" by Rufus Wainwright, I could not get him to open his mind (or his ears) to Mumford & Sons. When I played the first track of Sigh No More in the car, he actually covered his ears and told me, "That hurts my ears." I guess there is no accounting for taste. Guess we'll leave them off the growing playlist that we are compiling in order to further our son's musical education.

Though it might not be his cup of tea—yet, anyway—there is one song I'd like to put on that playlist for him. We know he's already a fan of its composer's work. If nothing else, this particular song means something to me now that it never did before. I've got my own one of these now, and so the lyrics speak to me in a much more profound, powerful way.

I'd make a terrible singer/songwriter, kid. You don't realize it yet, but I'm not a good singer. Your mother, in fact, hates my singing. She's the one with the beautiful voice in the family. Hopefully you'll take after her.

But anyway, if I were to ever write a song for you, it might go a little something like this . . .

No comments:

Post a Comment