Things that “might have been” and things that “became”… Part V

Starting with this blogpost, I decided to list the top 5 songs that really meant something to me over the years since I was a young boy. Songs I even remember where I was and what I did when I heard them the first time. I decided to do this for the sake of my daughter to read when Im dead so maybe (I wish) she can take care of thoose original vinyl recordings and treat them with the respect they deserve and know the reason why she should.

This is for you honey – Dad

Van Halen – Mean Street (spotify link)
I must have been about 13 -14 years old when I heard this song the first time. It was a total coincidence. As most of us at this time my musical world was a mix of AC/DC, Disharge, Blag Flag, KISS etc. A chaotic musical mix of Punk and Heavy metal
No wonder it all ended up with styles like trashmetal and hardcore years later.

I was going to visit a friend and when we went upstairs to play some computer games I just froze in the stairs.  From he’s older brothers room came a sound so different it might as well have been from another world. It was the tapping pull-off/pull-on intro from “Mean Street”.

A sound that could carve through frozen fish
I had NEVER before heard a guitar been played like that (no one had actually).
Imagine you hear music from another planet for the first time – nothing like it had ever been played or heard before. It was so exciting and then it crescendos into one of the heaviest Rock ‘n’ Roll riffs ever made. With a guitar sound that could carve through frozen fish…  It was fresh, fun, happy and yet heavy.  The rest of the afternoon was spent with my firends older brother (who in fact was a base player himself) listening to Van Halen. I lost a friend that day but I had a lot more in common with the older brother anyway.

Damn you to hell!
Van Halen was that band that made a teenager dream of beautiful girls, sunshine and Rock ‘n’ Roll fame on a beach somewhere in “Americana”. We could do it, We actually believed we could do it. Later I realised the dream would pretty much just stay a dream.
Some years later I was handing out newspapers in the pouring rain in some remote suburb in sweden shouting “Damn you Van Halen, damn you to hell!” (true story)

The love affair
Anyway, this moment started what became a long, long love affair with the band Van Halen. I own all their records (on vinyl up to around when Hagar took over). Bought their four first albums the same year and been totally into them since back around 1982.
And still 30 years later when they annonced the release of Van Halen – A Different Kind Of Truth I waited like I was 13 years old again. Van Halen – You And Your Blues can it get any better?

I could write an essay on Van Halen, but I won’t…

(Yes Honey you heard it all growing up, I stole a lot of riffs from Mr. Van Halen – Love /Dad)

Things that “might have been” and things that “became”…

It’s like the older I get, the more I have the urge to sort things out for myself.
As a young man I had no problem with the chaos inside me, I could even embrace it and feel it was a big part of my creative process whatever I did – mostly as a musician.
I wrote crazy poems, lyrics and songs. I collected notes from my wife (still do). And everything was “for the moment of things” with no plan or structure. When whatever I did was done it went down in a box almost instantly. The result beeing boxes full of papers, notebooks, drawings, ideas, lyrics and recordings of things that “might have been”. Some things “became”…

When I turned 40 something happened. I got more and more organized and structured. Not by some active choice. It just happened. So the last couple of years my creative process has been very structured. I sit myself down regularly to write new songs or lyrics for the band. I sort, organize and prioritize things around me, and things that were. I suspect this blog has something to do with it to.

Music has always been a big part of my life – I play, listen and write it. It consumes my soul, defines who I am. Sometimes it lifts me and sometimes it breaks me. Nevertheless music has, and always will be, a vital part of my life. So in the car on my way to work this morning I realized there a couple of songs that really defined me as a young man. Songs I still can remember exactly where I was when I first heard them. Like a game changer for my life. Songs that completely altered me and my perception of the world around me. So in the light of the above I realized I just have to list them.

As always in my blog I’m not sure why stuff ends up here. Maybe it’s so my youngest daughter some day when I’m gone can read this. She might smile and think to herself, “ok, now I get it, that’s why dad was the way he was”. She’s the one born in my image. She’s the reflection of me in heart and soul and she will know what this all means and what to do with it (yes you will – dad).

So over the next weeks (starting tomorrow) I’ll post my list of the top 5 songs that formed me when I was young. For my daughter to read when I’m dead. (yes you – Dad) 

Stay tuned

Rock ‘n’ roll and humor

There can be nothing more tragic when a a rock ‘n’ roll band takes themself dead serious..

That’s not the case with the American hard rock band from Boston, Massachusetts – The Upper Crust
Their major music influence is Bon Scott-era AC/DC, alongside glam rock band Kiss, and fictional heavy metal band Spinal Tap.

Rolling Stone has stated that “Dismiss Boston’s Upper Crust as a joke rock band if you must, but give them this much: They’re actually funny, and there’s as much rock as mock to their singular brand of “roque”” and that “there’s plenty of worthy riffs and double-entendre wit to go around”.

Check out  “Let Them Eat Rock”!

Still stuck in the 70’s

I’m still stuck in the mid 70’s. I was only 9 years old when Sex Pistols released Never Mind the Bollocks, Here’s the Sex Pistols but along with Jimi Hendrix they changed my life and made me the guitar player I am today.

I owe so much to the 70’s.
Another band i recently rediscovered is Radio Birdman. Check out there Iggy cover of TV eye from 1977 above – it sums up the soul purpose of playing music for me. (unfortunately there only one album available on Spotify and none of there earlier work which prevents them from being “this weeks Spotify”)