asktab asked: At what age did you really start getting and understanding the power of music?
I still don’t get/understand it. I still keep finding records that just grab me, and I always wonder, “How does that work?”
My grandparents had a Country-Western band and they used to take me to shows when I was little. My mom played the drums here and there. My family was always trying to teach me to play an instrument (piano, harmonica, oboe, guitar), but I just don’t have the knack. It’s weird because I was a creative kid, I was always drawing pictures, painting, writing, sculpting, making damn near anything other than music, so it strikes me as terribly ironic that the older I get the more fascinated I become by music. It’s an obsession that’s been getting worse with every passing year, and I’ve been assured by music nuts older than myself that it just keeps getting worse with age. I’m twenty-eight now. Maybe by the time I’m seventy-three I’ll understand music.
One thing, though, about the power of music: I served two tours in Iraq as a line medic, right? It sucks, but I finally get home, I leave Active Duty, and after awhile I decide to talk to a shrink at the V.A. about some problems I was having and she says, “We should come up with a plan. What do you do to cope when you get stressed or angry?” And I didn’t really know what to say, except “Smoke pot, listen to records, play with my pet guinea pigs, and write about something.” She can’t document “smoke pot” as an official recommendation, of course, but now I’ve got a piece of paper from a licensed psychiatrist prescribing me to write and listen to music as a way to cope with PTSD. How crazy is that?
Thanks for writing & keep on rockin’ in the Free World, dude—