I've loved music all my life. It was a vital part of my childhood. Classical music in particular.
Both my parents loved it, but especially my Mom. She grew up with a lot of violin music around her, since her eldest brother had a large collection of records and she listened to them a lot in. Especially in a period of illness when she had to stay home from school. She told me that listening to all that wonderful music gave her great comfort and joy. And when I was a little girl, she was always accompagnied by recordings of classical music while she was doing her household chores. Especially violin music. And she sang along, too, - or rather hummed the melodies, since they were mostly without lyrics: Johannes Brahms' Hungarian dances ... Claude Debussy's "Clair de lune"... Dmitri Shostakovich's romance "The Gadfly"... Gabriel Fauré's "Après un rêve".... Antonin Dvorak's "Songs my mother taught me"... Pjotr Tchaikovsky's "Sérenade mélancholique" .... Ole Bull's "Sæterjentens søndag" .... Fritz Kreisler's "La Gitana" ... and so many, many more.
I learned to love them all, just like she did.
And then there was Grieg ... Beethoven ... Mozart ... Haydn .... Chopin .... Schumann ... I can't even begin to describe the joy that filled me when I listened to all that wonderful music! And that's exactly what's so beautiful about it: You don't have to describe it. You don't have to describe anything at all. The music speaks for itself. It can express all feelings in a way that words never can.
My mother's love for classical music opened up the whole world of music to me. In my early childhood it was available to me through my parents' tape recorder and through the radio. Not only classical music, but also other genres, like pop, jazz and rock music.
Then, a few years into the 1960s, we got a television set in our home, and a new era began. It was all in black-and-white back then, but that didn't matter. It all came very much alive to me. I watched operettas, ballets and classical concerts, but also quite a few American TV-shows and musicals, which of course had a lot of both singing and dancing in them. Danny Kaye was one of my favorites back then. And films with Shirley Temple ... Jeanette McDonald and Eddie Nelson .... Julie Andrews ... Frank Sinatra ... Fred Astaire ... I could go on and on...!
I was hooked.
I day-dreamed about becoming a singer and dancer and actor myself. It was my life! And I had no barriers back then. I sang with confidence. My Dad used to sit himself down by the piano in the evenings, playing a variety of songs, especially Christian traditional songs and hymns, but also songs like "Home on the Range", "My grandfather's clock.." and that kind of stuff.
And I sang. Sometimes alone, sometimes together with my sister. We could go on for hours, and my Mom listened to us from the kitchen and often joined in, too.
Those were happy times, for sure!
And as I grew older and became a teenager, I listened a lot to "Radio Luxembourg" in my room at night, when I was supposed to be asleeep. I turned the volume of the old Radionette way down low so I didn't wake anyone up, and listened with my ear close to the radio. That's where I heard "Bridge over troubled water" with Paul Simon & Art Garfunkel for the very first time, and it was the most beautiful song I'd ever heard. And the world of pop music opened up to me. The Carpenters, Neil Sedaka, The Beatles ... I felt like I was floating away on a white cloud in the sky. The music got under my skin. Tickled my ears. Filled me with joy.
And then there was Donny Osmond ... "Puppy Love" ... I had a crush on him for quite a few years, and the walls in my teenage room was covered with pictures of him (and of course a big poster of Liverpool FC and my favorite player at that time, Kevin Keegan), - until ABBA, Paul McCartney / Wings and Queen (among others) caught my interest more.
I got my first record player when I was 14 or 15, and my LP record collection grew slowly in the beginning, since I didn't earn much money of my own back then (the paper round I did 3 times a week didn't pay much), - but it grew more rapidly over the years, since music was a huge passion of mine and I discovered more and more artists from very different genres. In the late 1970s I also started to buy a lot of Christian music, and Larry Norman, Amy Grant, Paul Field, and Adrian Snell were among my favorites, as well as a few local Norwegian bands, like PeOBand and Kainos (from my home area). Whenever there was a Christian concert or festival in my area, I went there together with my friends, and it's a period of my life that I remember with great joy. A few of the friends from that period are people I still have contact with.
My music library in the 1980s naturally included Randy Crawford, Billy Joel, Lionel Richie, Kate Bush, Belinda Carlisle, Tanita Tikaram, T'Pau, and many, many more. As the years passed by, my list of favorites just kept on growing, and they represented very different genres. This is not covered in one day, for sure!
If you choose to follow my blog, I'll definitely be sharing more later. Hope you've enjoyed it so far!
Do you have any personal favorites? Stay tuned, and who knows: Maybe you'll find a piece about them here later.