Every couple of months I find some new song I want to listen to in my car. What this means is I have to make a new mix CD for my car, and whatever I have thrown together will become the anthem for my children until I cut them off. I must be very careful what kinds of songs I choose. . .
I have always been somewhat of a connoisseur of music, not exactly an expert or visionary, but I like what I like and will go out of my way to like new and different stuff that no one has ever heard of. It used to be cooler when I actually went to music stores and stood there, listening to albums, holding them in my hands, studying the cover art. Now I just go to iTunes and they tell me what I will like, so I don’t have to shop around. This method is not as fun, but I will admit, it is efficient.
In my music library I have a chronology of songs that have been my favorites for years, and all the new songs that I will probably like for a couple of weeks before I forget why I bought them. Any number of these old and new songs can make it onto the car CD. My husband, who finds my taste in music to be questionable if not moderately unconscionable, has reserved the right to turn the song at any given point. I have developed a method by which we bleep out the swear words I always seem to forget about. Sometimes this involves yelling out a different word at the same time the artist, sometimes it is a scream, an animal sound, could be anything, this act is very much like musical Tourette’s syndrome. Sometimes I just turn the sound all the way down for one second. It wasn’t always so important, for about 3 years the little kid in the back seat didn’t know what the word was. For all intents and purposes the kids still don’t know, but now Thing One is old enough to ask, and Thing Two will undoubtedly repeat expletive at the most inappropriate times.
I can’t stop making these CDs. It is one of the quirks of my generation that we refuse to grow up. We start our own companies with the base model that no one will ever have to wear a suit. We manufacture and purchase onesies for our babies that mimic our favorite band t-shirts: The Ramones, Bob Marley, Nirvana. It will always be appropriate to wear Converse All-Stars with formal wear. We will never give in and listen to that crappy kids’ music they try to sell on TV. Never! But, I can see where there may be a problem when my kid is sitting in the back seat of the car bopping her head along to David Guetta and Akon singing Sexy Bitch.
One answer to the generational music dilemma was solved by the company that makes Rock-a-Bye Baby, lullaby music by your favorite bands. I’ll bet you never thought Tool could be as soothing as when they are played on the vibraphone. Now, I get to listen to Opiate, my favorite Tool song, and sing the words in my head while my kids fall asleep in the back. For about 3 months the baby version of Clocks by Coldplay was on constant repeat in my car, which is fortunately better than the original. The next song that got unlimited play was the baby version of In Bloom by Nirvana. You can’t help but sing along when you know the lyrics. Both my husband and I would sing the lyrics along with the little music box version so much that Thing One actually learned the words having never heard the original. To her, that version is the original.
I suppose the point of all this is that I want my kids to like what I like. No matter what happens, they will like at least 1 out of 10 options, and that’s a start. Tonight driving home we listened to Home by Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeroes on repeat, as per request from the backseat. I’ll take that as proof that my plan is working.