It’s Only Rock and Roll (But I Like It)

I have had a love affair with music from a very early age. It has always been a big part of my life, as anyone who has known me will tell you. Music has gotten me through hard times, good times, boredom, long deployments when in the Navy. It has been my one constant.

My first memory of music was my grandmother buying me the 45 (ask your mother what that is) of the song “Downtown” by Patti Page (again…ask your mom or dad). Apparently as a child I would roam the house singing the song, so it became my first record. This was followed by “Little Willy” by Sweet, and “Oh What a Night” by the Four Seasons. This led to my original love of the drums. My grandmother had a friend who’s daughter played drum in the high school marching band, and she gave me a Slinglerland drum kit when I was 6 years old. This was not a toy kit. It was a full sized, snare, single tom, bass, and single crash symbol. Along with that she bought me three albums; “Diane Ross presents The Jackson 5”, “Jermaine Jackson”, and “The Osmonds”, and my grandmother bought me “The Osmonds Phase Three”. I know this seriously dates me, but it was great playing along to these records, and it instilled in me a great appreciation for song writing and orchestration that followed me into later years when my tastes changed. It also gave me an appreciation of different types of music which is still in me today.

Along with these records my aunt and Mom had a stack of 45’s ranging from The Real McCoy’s (“Hang on Sloopy”, “I Can’t Explain It”), to the Dukes (“Duke of Earl”, “Kissing in the Kitchen”), to the Box Tops, the Lovin’ Spoonful, Jimi Hendrix, etc. etc. I inhaled this music, and drummed along happily to every one of them.

As you grow older, though, your tastes change. I became first a HUGE Bachman-Turner Overdrive fan for a year or two, which then, somehow, morphed into KISS (of which I am still, and always will be, a HUGE fan). Once KISS was in the picture I became more interested in the heavier side of music. My interests drifted to Ted Nugent, Boston, Angel, Black Sabbath … bands on the heavier side, but more importantly bands that put on a SHOW. I loved, and still do, when heavier bands incorporate orchestration and layers of vocals to their music. Meat Loaf (songs by Jim Steinman) was a big influence. Pink Floyd. The Moody Blues. Styx. Basically, if you named the band I had an album by them for awhile. I could even find good influences from bands like ABBA, the Bay City Rollers, Bee Gees. Anything was worth a listen to.

I graduated from the drums (I was never outstanding, though I did play in marching bands for awhile before football took over) and taught myself guitar and bass, playing in a number of bands through high school. My hair was long, curly, and definitely looked the rocker type.

I still play my guitars on occasion, but the dream of being a rock start has passed. In my baby book it is funny to read what I had answered when I was 6 years old when my Mom asked me what I wanted to be when I grew up. My answer was “Policeman or Rock Star”.

At least I was clear about my goals very young.

The love of music has continued through my whole life though, and I am glad to say this trait has passed on to my two sons. My oldest, Jonathan, plays drums in a band in Ormond Beach, and my youngest, Zak, is as eclectic in his taste as I am, but the fun thing about that is we can share music, even as he grows older. The ability to share this love of music has been a joy in my life. Currently, Polk Audio is also attempting to share a love of music in a social media platform, through their site ( By visiting this microsite, users can upload video clips or audio of themselves describing their love of music, and how music has affected their lives. It is a very interesting visit for sure, listening to each of these people describe their musical experiences. User content can be pushed live through Facebook or Twitter, so that you can connect and share with like minded people. It’s a worthwhile project, and costs nothing to participate Take a moment and visit the site. To see if you’ve been reading, the first person to tweet to @FatSlowTri, with the comment “I Loves Me Some Music” I will give a gift code to for $50 which can be used on the Polk Audio Products page. What A DEAL!!

This post is sponsored by FitFluential LLC. All opinions are my own.

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