|Abba - definitely not old school
While I honestly think 9 is a bit young to be dissing each other's musical tastes (!) the above, and a few other recent incidents, have made me wonder about how and whether we, as parents, influence our children's musical tastes. The death of David Bowie last week made me realise the children didn't have a clue who he was -- so I remedied that by playing them a few tracks at the weekend. (They liked "Space Oddity" and went crazy dancing to "Rebel Rebel"). Also this week, Expat Mum posted on Facebook about her 12-year-old singing "Bohemian Rhapsody" - I've tried to get the boys into that one and so far, failed.
There is a great feature-ette on BBC Radio 4's 'Saturday Live' called "Inheritance Tracks" where a celebrity talks about the music they inherited and the music they will pass on. And if you read interviews with musicians they will quite often cite the music their parents played in the house as being inspirational. But what age does this start? (And did those people actually hate their parents' music at the time, and only now recognize it as cool?)
My boys are both pretty musical, although to date their musical education has been more about learning the piano and violin and listening to a few, mostly classical, concerts at school. Very occasionally they comment on a song that's playing on the radio in the car, and as they get older this is happening more regularly. This weekend they both announced that "Stay with me" by Sam Smith is "actually quite good" and they're also quite vociferous about stuff they don't like -- so far, anything involving rap. They also love Abba (see above) since we played it in the car quite a bit last summer on holiday in Italy. But they've never been into watching MTV, like one of their cousins, and we're not the kind of hip parents who take our kids to Glastonbury or Bestival, so they probably know relatively little about modern music (other than the stuff I listen to in the car).
I sense they're at an age now where I could start to give them a bit of a musical education - not that I'm any kind of expert, but I know what I like and have, I think, fairly broad, although mainstream, tastes. But in a few years, won't this just be the equivalent of "Dad Dancing?' Is there any point in trying to get your children to appreciate the music you like? Or is liking different stuff to your parents just a perfectly normal form of teenage rebellion.....and maybe I should just let them work it out for themselves.
Oh, I asked Littleboy 2 what the mean boy did like (apart from Michael Jackson). His brother Littleboy 1 snorted before he could answer and said: "Probably One Direction."
At least he shares my opinion on that one....