So today in a desperate attempt to entertain a very energetic and easily bored 1 year old I turned on my computer and cranked out some tunes. I am very lucky to have a daughter who loves music almost as much as I do, and she takes great pleasure in getting down and funky any time she hears music, whether it be in the supermarket or the kitchen. There is never a bad time to start dancing for Miss K. We were having a lovely time listening to my large catalogue of music, when suddenly one of my favourite songs as a child came on, and as Miss K and I danced away to it, a horrible realisation dawned upon me.
The song was They Don't Really Care About Us by Michael Jackson, and when I was a kid, I loved this song so much that me and two of my best friends choreographed a song to it in grade 6 to perform in front of our classmates. It was the first really angry song I had ever heard and it really struck a chord with me. At the time I wasn't allowed to listen to a lot of top 40 music as my dad hated it, and we listened to a lot of music from the 60's and 70's in our house. On the plus side I was well familiar with some classic musicians like The Beach Boys, Alice Cooper and Skyhooks. On the negative side, I knew almost nothing about bands like Guns 'n' Roses and The Red Hot Chilli Peppers.
I was actually quite sad when Michael Jackson died back in 2009. I didn't run out and make a shrine to him or cry in the streets like some of his die hard fans did, in fact I wasn't even really surprised he had died, given I'd watched his slow decline into crazy town over the past decade. But it was the end of an era the day he passed away, a fact of which I hadn't really given much thought to until I was dancing in my lounge room this afternoon with Miss K. That's when I realised that she would never understand the hysteria that he was able to cause in a room full of women. Given that she'll be looking at his life retrospectively there will be no surprise for her when she reads that he was charged with molesting a child, nor will she get as excited as I used to when she hears one of his songs on the radio. I'm sure she'll find musicians and bands of her own to idolise, but I will probably be so over popular music and old fashioned by then I'll just shake my head and smile at her.
And that's when I realised exactly how much wonderful music moments Miss K has missed out on purely because she was born in the wrong decade. All of the things I thought of as revolutionary will be dated and daggy by the time she's able to really appreciate music, and I have a horrible feeling that all musicians will have finally been replaced by computers (it's happening already) and real music will be a thing of the past. Of course anyone born in the fifties and sixties has been saying that for years and years, but this time I think it's really going to happen. And that makes me sadder than you can know.
But I can and will do something about this. For right now I have a very impressionable young mind at my disposal who is willing to take anything mum says as gospel, so her music education starts now. I will have a child who will be able to sing any Beatles song she hears, and will be able to tell the difference between the poppy, upbeat songs by Red Hot Chilli Peppers and the angry, angst filled music of the Eels. And if she wants to stay in my will, she'll also hate Nickelback.
*For anyone who has been living in a cave for the past twenty years or was born after 1996, HIStory was an album released by Michael Jackson in 1995 and the first album that I ever coveted. Of course I couldn't afford the album being 11 years old at the time, but I had a good friend whose parents loved her more than mine did obviously and they bought it for her, so I spent all my spare time over at her house listening to it.