Friday, October 07, 2011
Pop a top with top o' the pops. Again.
It's late at night in the middle of the week.
You're drinking beer and playing this stuff -- the original half-century-old 45 RPM vinyl records, a ritual extending the full breadth of your recollection -- and you're contemplating life and this week's edition of 3 Chords & the Truth.
In that moment of being lost in yourself, in your memories, in the music (and perhaps in the beer), you are keenly aware of two things.
ONE. You were blessed with -- by accident of time, place and class -- an amazingly good foundation in popular music.
Two. You, by God, are a Southern boy, through and through. Even if, at present, you do a passable imitation of a middle-aged Midwesterner.
In the cold light of day, other thoughts worm their way into the keyboard and onto the blog. In particular, what is the equivalent for those a generation or two younger than a fool such as I?
What today, musically or otherwise, sets in stone one's sense of place, of culture, of identity? When does it happen -- mine happened at about the age of three, I reckon -- and what does it mean in these postmodern times?
What are the things -- the sounds -- that bypass the mind of the millennial and head straight for the soul? Do they understand identity and culture in the same way as their forebears? Indeed, does a young person in Omaha understand who and what he is in anything resembling that of a 50-year-old in Baton Rouge? Or a 20-year-old in Pascagoula?
Who am I? Of what am I? What do I hold dear? Hold sacred?
Eternal questions. I suspect how we answer them only has the whole world riding on it.
Welcome to the intersection of Culture and Everything.