Posted by: John McGerr | January 8, 2009

Musical Musings


I am listening to Lynyrd Skynyrd as I write this, a group I first heard of in secondary school when a classmate played me a tape of Freebird. Musical taste, or any personal taste, is difficult to account for to another. There are some groups and songs I never tire of, some I only listen to ‘when I’m in the mood’, others that I like for a time, stop liking, listen to again after a longtime and remember why I liked them in the first place. The first albums I can remember listening to on a regular basis were a best of collection of Jim Reeves songs and another collection of the Dubliners. In my grandmothers house her children listened mainly to country and western, but also had the Beach Boys and one single I loved – Up Around The Bend by Creedence Clearwater Revival. The first LP I owned was Simon & Garfunkel’s  ‘Bridge Over Troubled Waters’.

Given this background it might surprise some to find that for a good few years my musical tastes were limited to Rock, most Heavy Metal, taking in groups like AC/DC, Deep Purple, Rainbow, Motorhead, Black Sabbath and Ted Nugent. I guess this was mostly peer influence as most of my friends at the time were into this stuff as well and you always like to fit in with the crowd. As I grew older I found myself delving into a variety of different musical genres. What influenced this change? It’s hard to say, it wasn’t any single thing –  for instance I became a fan of Ritchie Blackmore’s guitar style, found him listed by some magazines at ‘the greatest guitarist’ while others made similar claims about other guitarists. So I began listening to these other guitarists – Eric Clapton, Jimi Hendrix, Jimmy Page, which in turn led me to listen to listen to the Yardbirds, Cream, Led Zeppelin, BB King and others. Friends introduced me to Pink Floyd (still my all time favourite group), Van Morrison and Steely Dan.

You can find out more about these groups by clicking on the links or visiting the Allmusic site

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