Why do you listen to the music that you do? How did you get into that stuff? These are questions I get asked all the time. They’re almost always asked by adults. I remember sitting in math class when our TA asked me what concert shirt I was wearing. (The kid behind me was trying to figure out what state ON was…) I said Whitesnake. He was shocked, in a good way, because he didn’t think I listened to that kind of music. The same thing happened when I shadowed Trish Gazall, a radio host at KEZK, last year. We were talking about target audiences, and she said, “…and you probably listen to Z107.7?” She was surprised when I said that I listened to KSHE.
Anyway, how I got into this music started out as a joke. My dad decided to put some 80s music onto my MP3 player when I was about seven. So, I had Hannah Montanna, Taylor Swift, A Flock of Seagulls, The Bangles, Queen, and Rick Springfield on my MP3 player. I also had that one song “867-5309 (Jenny)” on there too. Yes, I was that one kid walking down the sidewalk singing “Jenny I got your number. I need to make you mine…” My parents thought this was hilarious. After about a year of this music, I decided to see what other songs my dad had. For some reason, I got hooked on Queen. I made my dad put all of the queen songs he had (only a couple) onto my MP3 player. Over the next couple of years, I still listened to pop music, but I was slowly introducing myself to some of the classics. There came a point where I just requested Metallica every time I got into the car. From there, I never listened to another pop song again (voluntarily).
That one long winter break we had, which lasted about two weeks, was when I really got into more bands. I had gotten an iTunes giftcard for christmas; it took me no time at all to spend that. Apple had just introduced iTunes Radio. I had a bunch of stations in my favorites, but Queen Radio was most frequently played. One time I was listening to it, and I heard an amazing voice. It was the voice of Tommy Shaw, frontman for Styx. The song was “Too Much Time on My Hands.” It was the first Styx song I had ever heard (except for Mr. roboto…who doesn’t know that song?) That was how I discovered my favorite band. For this reason, I like to call Queen my “gateway band”. It was a domino effect from there; Styx led to Journey, Journey led to REO Speedwagon, REO led to Foreigner, and so on.
Even just in the past year, my music taste has expanded. Now, I listen to anything from ’50s Blues and Rockabilly to Grunge and Metal. My phone has over 2,500 songs on it and about 19GB of music. All of it is older Rock (except that stupid Adell song that won’t let me delete it).