Music you grew up with - What music did you grow up listening to?

All topics musical, not specifically piano-related

Postby Stretto » Wed Nov 30, 2005 4:42 pm

I've read a lot here and there on this board regarding the importance of music listening. The recent posts from Dr. Leland and Loveapiano in the Piano Teaching Tips forum prompted me to post this question. I have often thought back on all the music I listened to from an early age and how it influenced my preferences in the music I gravitate toward today whether listening to, playing it on the piano, or composing. Long before I ever knew I would take up an instrument, etc., I spent hours listening to music at home that still as I said influences me today. It intrigues me everytime I think about it.

What music did you grow up listening to? Do you remember specific recordings, performances, etc? What influence did the music you listened to early on have on you musically today?
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Postby 108-1121887355 » Wed Nov 30, 2005 7:29 pm

I have answered your question, recently on a post. I do feel that listening to music when growing up is important. I don't think that one has to grow up listening to one style of music and only enjoy that music. I think it opens a world of music to explore and find your favorites as you hear all kinds of music. (I just hope my granddaughter moves on from the popular music of today!)
Another thought - play music as your children fall asleep. They will remember. Musical memories stay forever and bring continued joy.
:;):
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Postby pianoannie » Wed Nov 30, 2005 9:04 pm

The music I grew up in is pretty different from what I enjoy now! My parents always had the country music station on. That's not something I go out of my way to hear these days! (although I did enjoy "Walk the Line," the new movie about the life of Johnny Cash--those songs took me back to childhood!).
The other music I heard a lot in childhood was Herb Alpert and The Tijuana Brass. My parents had every album of theirs. I do still really enjoy that music. They really had a great sound!
I wasn't familiar with classical or jazz or Broadway as a child---all styles that I love now.
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Postby 108-1121887355 » Thu Dec 01, 2005 11:06 am

I really think 'music is music' and whatever your preferences, it is all good.(Well, maybe not all). It is good to have a variety of styles and then you have the choice.
I didn't get into country until about 20 years ago. My second husband was a BIG fan (that and football). He had lots of tapes and he played them often. I found some songs I really enjoyed - some great love songs I still play and smile as I think of him. He died 4 yrs ago this month. I still play the country station in the car often. (I like Lone Star).
My daughter says is is all tragic and sad but her daughter likes it. She used to sit outside from 6 months on, next to my husband listening to the country station on the radio, bouncing and dancing to the music. She asks me to put the country station on in my car although in her car it is the 'new teen' music - most of which I could do without.
Maybe some of our choices come from personal and emotional reasons.
I have so many popular songs that my Mother and I sang and loved..."Always", 'I'll See You Again", "As Time Goes By" and on and on....
I have a favorite opera and other classics that I love to hear and play.
I always love, "Somewhere Over the Rainbow" and followed Judy Garland's career.
Happy December
Joan :;):
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Postby Dr. Bill Leland » Thu Dec 01, 2005 3:12 pm

I've mentioned before--here and even in my first interview of ten years ago--that I was very, very fortunate as a child because I came from a musical family that provided my brother and me with a variety of music from different sources.
I participated in music practically from babyhood, sitting next to my grandfather on his piano bench while my mother, brother, uncles and cousins stood around singing Gilbert and Sullivan, old college songs and church music. Grandpa was organist/choirmaster of an Episcopal church in West Philadelphia, and it wasn't long before I was in the Junior and then Senior Choir. He had also had a book and music store at one time, and so we inherited old records of Caruso, Heifetz (as a prodigy!), Kreisler, Casals and others.

But my brother and I also collected records of all the great swing bands--Dorsey, Goodman, Artie Shaw, Cab Calloway, Krupa, Harry James, et al--and we occasionally went to hear them in person when they played Philly (Spike Jones was--is--my favorite!) And, of course, I fell in love with Judy Garland ("Over the etc.") in "Wizard of Oz", then with Julie Andrews and all the rest.

Best of all, I regularly got to hear the Philadelphia Orchestra from an early age, which made such a profound and permanent impression that to this day I remain an unregenerate bigot in insisting that their sound of the 1950s and 60s was the most magnificent sound in the history of music.

Maybe country music is sad all the time because it comes from extreme poverty, and at its best it can be profoundly moving. Jazz comes out of poverty, to. I love Louis Armstrong--his singing and playing had a lot of pain in them, and he used the same inflections with his trumpet as with his voice. Some TV shows have been revisiting all that, with the current tragedy of New Orleans.

Then there's Dave Brubeck----but this post is getting long and boring, so I'll quit.

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Postby minorkey » Thu Dec 01, 2005 7:09 pm

Stretto wrote:What music did you grow up listening to? Do you remember specific recordings, performances, etc? What influence did the music you listened to early on have on you musically today?

As a young child, I listened to all the classics- Beatles, Stones, Beach Boys, Elvis, Roy Orbison, The Doors, etc. etc. :D One of my earliest memories is singing with my father into a reel-to-reel tape recorder along with some early country and rock and roll songs. (Listening back, I've been told that I had a better sense of rythym and timing at age 3 than he did as an adult!) And I was lucky enough to see THE performance of all time: The Beatles on Ed Sullivan! It was electrifying. Being such a rock fan, guitar was my first instrument (age 8).
I eventually gravitated to piano, and strangely, I prefer to play classical music on piano rather than pop- although to be sure, pop music has its place and I'm sure I could do it. I'd also really like to play some blues-style music one day, which is probably derived from my love of early rock music.
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Postby 108-1121887355 » Thu Dec 01, 2005 8:12 pm

Oh, yes, Gilbert and Sullivan - how could I forget. I played Patience in G&S my senior year in high school and joined a group in New Jersey after I was married. Also saw several in NYC and my sister as a child and we said, "Never, no never" over and over for MANY years after seeing "H.M.S. Pinafore". I took my three children into Boston years ago to see "Pinafore" They didn't enjoy it as much as I'd hoped.
Your post was NOT boring. I just loved reading it as it brought back so many memories from Spike Jones to Caruso!
I have a story about a ride home with Jimmy - Judy Garland's chauffeur - I can e mail you, if you'd like. I really was a big fan and was in music school in NYC when whe was at the Palace. Also loved Al Jolson after seeing the movie. Lots of records of both. (Not much homework done.)
Thanks for you and the message board for making this a heppy day!
Joan
:D
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Postby Beckywy » Fri Dec 02, 2005 11:34 pm

I've always listened to rock, alternative rock, hard rock...

I find that everytime I listen to classical music - I end up analyzing them in my head...probably from my music history and music analysis classes.

Rock music on the other hand, it is simple - based on only 3-4 chords and I can just enjoy it.
"The real purpose of studying music-to unite ourselves with our special gifts in such a way that one would add strength to the other" Seymour Bernstein
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Postby 108-1121887355 » Sat Dec 03, 2005 5:22 pm

Beckywy,
You can have all the rock music - I could not listen to it long and it would not be relaxing or enjoyable for me. :p I guess that is why we have all kinds of music as we all have different tastes. Perhaps it is because my analyzing of classical music is so far behind me that I can just relax and enjoy...though I think I always left the theory class behind and just enjoyed the sounds.
I like to sing, so enjoy the pop and country music. I do try to appreciate the rock my granddaughter listens to but it is hard.
I imagine you expose your children to all styles of music.
Keep on rockin'! :D
Joan
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Postby Beckywy » Sun Dec 04, 2005 7:22 pm

Hi Joan:

Fortunately- my girls are only 2, and the only music they listen to are the kid songs and children CDs. Even in the car, they are only exposed to the children CDs. But I have to admit, while in-utero, we did go see Bon Jovi when I was 6 months pregnant. Wow, I suffered for that. The girls kicked like you wouldn't believe.
"The real purpose of studying music-to unite ourselves with our special gifts in such a way that one would add strength to the other" Seymour Bernstein
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Postby Chilly » Fri Jul 21, 2006 3:10 am

Different music styles are great! There's pretty much something for whatever mood you're in. Some music is energizing, some relaxing, and some cheers your soul!

I must say that i have no personal preference. I grew up with classical - and ABBA - and kids music. My dad is a Classical purist - he doesn't like anything else, though he does have his gospel collection, but it tends more to the classical side, or opera.

I haven't got any kids yet, but would defiatley play them a huge variety. Classical, rock, pop, blues/jazz etc.
Actually, this morning on my way to work, i was listening to some hiphop/rap, and while it's not normally what i would tend to, i really got into it, and didn't want to get out my car when i got to work because i just wanted to sit there and listen - the amount of words that those guys fit into that fast rythm is quite something. But then you couldn't really play that on your piano. I find that music is just so intense - i.e. there's soo much to it and you learn to appreciate different sounds/instruments / rythms / voices etc in different music styles.

I LOVE IT!! :laugh:
Chilly
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Postby 108-1121887355 » Fri Jul 21, 2006 11:56 am

My granddaugher, 10 1/2 would agree with you. I am afraid I cannot quite appreciate it as music - must be the generation gap! I can't get all the words, either. When she is in my car, she will ask for 'her' station, unless I have been smart enough to bring a CD she enjoys. She sings popular music and plays classical and pop on the piano, and she enjoys it but I guess it is 'normal' to listen to the "music" of the day.

:p
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Postby Glissando88keys » Fri Jul 21, 2006 4:13 pm

Stretto wrote:.
What music did you grow up listening to? Do you remember specific recordings, performances, etc? What influence did the music you listened to early on have on you musically today?

My earliest memory of listening to music is hearing the songs "Purple People Eater" and Yellow Polka Dot Bikini coming from a shiny box in the kitchen. It was the late 50's to early 60's and those were the popular radio songs of the day. (I remember naiively asking her what a purple people eater is, and my mother giggled.) I occasionally hear them on the radio, now, which brings me back to that day, and I laugh to myself. :p

I remember my grandfather singing parts of melodies all the time, but I didn't recognize any of them. Some of his ancestors went to conservatories in Italy. He was a composer, so I wonder if those were his own tunes that I heard. As soon as I received the gift of a piano from my parents, I sat down and, by trial and error, picked out the notes from tunes I heard in my head, complete with left hand accompaniment and dischords. He was delighted to hear my cute little tunes, and of course, suggested to my mother that I go to the conservatory to continue my music studies.

My father listened to classical and opera (Caruso), big-band, swing, the Inkblots and Gershwin. He used to sing me to sleep with "You are My Sunshine," "Bicycle Built for Two," and "Five-Foot Two" My mom's favorites were Nat King Cole, Johnny Mathis and Harry Belafonte. My aunt had a thing for Frank Sinatra, The Four Seasons and "a capella" vocals. My friends and I later formed a vocal group, singing "a capella" harmonies whenever we were together. Dad bought me a "45" of The Mikado. Some of it was strange, but fascinating. This might account for my interest in world music.

I remember my mom kept me home from school on my twelfth birthday. She took me to the movies to see "The Sound of Music." I immediately went home and taught myself to play. "The hills are alive, la-da-da-da," and "Doe a Dear." In my Sight Singing class I re-discovered the meaning of this song. We went to Radio City Music Hall in NYC to see the stage shows. I remember feeling wonderfully overwhelmed by the awesome sound of the organ. Now, I love to switch my keyboard to the organ mode to play some of the music I'm working on, especially Bach and some hymns. She also bought my first Beatles album when they emerged on the rock scene, and took me to see "A Hard Day's Night." I became very busy learning to play the Beatles songs, by ear. When I mentioned the Beatles to my piano teacher, a concert pianist, we discussed the orchestral arrangement of "Eleanor Rigby." (My teen-aged son also fell in love with this song, in between head-banging.)

At my elementary school I remember singing alot. Songs like "This Land is Your Land", "America", "The Star-Spangled Banner", to name a few. We did rounds at assembly, and in the classroom we learned to play recorders. My sixth grade teacher sent me home with a book of Rogers and Hammerstein music, and asked me to learn, "You'll Never Walk Alone" which I played at graduation. I kept it for a few weeks, and I learned every song in the book. I became captivated with Rogers and Hammerstein, and Broadway showtunes. In college, I arranged and accompanied an original children's musical theatre adaptation of "Alice and Wonderland" I currently play show tunes as well as patriotic songs and old standards for seniors at community centers in my area.

I was trained in the classics at the Conservatory. I spent years at performance class every Saturday, listening to countless performances. There aren't many pieces written for piano that I have not heard. My piano teacher's lineage goes back to Franz Liszt. My overall preference in piano repertoire is the Romantic Era, Chopin and Liszt, who were contemporaries. I also love Aaron Copeland.

In High School I was influenced by classic choral music, and showtunes, which we sang in chorus. Just recently, I transferred this experience to improvising keyboard arrangements at church.

While in college I played piano and sang in a Rock band. The music I listened to most: Moody Blues, Pink Floyd, Procol Harem and The Kinks. At parties you could always find me at the piano playing requests. Even if I'd never played the song before, I could play it by ear.


I listened to a huge variety of music growing up. This has definitely influenced my musical tastes and those of my children. I play classical, liturgical arrangements, popular, showtunes, Patriotic, and I'm interested in the evolution of American music. I've begun to study world music, which takes adjusting to because the scales are not based on the pentatonic scale used in Western Music. I'm beginning to see music emerging in my grandchildren, too, who are only a little over one year old. But that is the beginning of another story. :D




Edited By Glissando88keys on 1153520234
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Postby Stretto » Fri Jul 21, 2006 5:07 pm

Glissando,
All I can say is, Wow!!! (That is quite impressive).

I enjoyed reading your post.

Stretto
:)
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Postby Dr. Bill Leland » Sat Jul 22, 2006 9:32 am

I was lucky, being born into a musical family. My grandfather was a church organist, and we all sang in the choir. Then there were frequent gatherings around his grand piano for singing of old college and folk songs and lots of Gilbert and Sullivan. My grandfather had also been the owner of a music store, so we inherited lots of records of Caruso, Kreisler, Mischa Elman, Casals, etc. Best of all, I started around the age of eight going to concerts of the Philadelphia Orchestra (when we could afford it!)--what a sound to grow up with! I still think of that sound as the greatest sound in the history of music. And soloists like Heifetz, Horowitz, Rubinstein, Kapell, Arrau.....

But also my brother and I collected records of the best pop music of the day: Crosby, Sinatra, Rosemary Clooney, Nat King Cole, The Andrew Sisters, et al, and the big bands like Tommy Dorsey, Benny Goodman, Artie Shaw, Cab Calloway, Glenn Miller, and that great genius Spike Jones (saw him in person once). How could you not go into music as a vocation with all that around?

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