I think I would have enjoyed this anyway, alto, but the fact that we share some major life soundtracks made it all the more significant to me.
My older sister introduced me to David Bowie. I couldn’t have been much older than 8 (same age she was when I was born). I didn’t know much about music at the point, but I knew Ziggy played guitar for a damned fact.
He fascinated me growing up, which was another reason for my older brother to torture me. Yes, I’m listening to fag music, blah blah blah. Fine, he blew Mick Jagger. Freddie Mercury, too? How nice. Leave me alone. Rod Stewart, as well? That’s a lot of a-list dick. Lou Reed? Oh, Lou Reed blew him. Yes, that’s lovely plot twisr. Dear brother, you sure know a lot about men blowing men. I should listen to real music like Judas Priest? Okay.
Just for reference, this is the same brother who would later refer to both Mick Jagger and David Bowie as nigger lovers. Classic, eh? Yeah.
He’s in jail now.
This is also the same idiot who once called me, after hearing Everlong, just to tell me “hey, man… I was wrong, the Foo Fighters aren’t gay…”
Seriously, that’s the asshole I grew up with.
David Bowie is in large part responsible for me finding nothing whatsoever wrong with a man possessing a sexy demeanor of the sort more commonly found in women. I’ve personally never experienced a sexual attraction to a man, but I know what sexy looks like, male or female.
That did not, however, make growing up a young man in Rankin County Mississippi any easier. No sir. It was basically an ass-kicking served on a silver platter. It’s shocking how real the urge to choke the life out of someone becomes when you’ve heard “You like like a gurl, dur hur” for the hundred-thousandth time.
I don’t recall ever hearing The Beatles played in our house. My parental influences were Elvis (I tried, but I just do not dig), Queen (oh, hell yes), Rod Stewart (not gonna lie, I’ll rock Maggie May any day), Neil Diamond(God help me, but Brother Love’s Travelling Salvation Show gets me pumped), and Bob Dylan (it took some growing up to appreciate him).
That same sister did, however give me some proto-Beatles hooks. She had a John Lennon poster from when he was all bearded out. I irreverently referred to him at that time as Lumberjack Lennon. She also sat my little sister and I down for a viewing of Sgt. Peppers Lonely Hearts Club Band, the musical, featuring Peter Frampton and The Beegees.
Yes, that was my introduction to the Beatles (weep for me). Sandy Fahrina singing Here Comes the Sun was the first Beatles song that made my young ears pay attention.
Later I would find out that my Uncle Doyle, a persona non grata to my family for no actual reason other than my dad was a dick, was a Beatles FREAK. I remember him showing me his prized 45 pressing with their name spelled The Beetles. He pointed me at the real Sgt. Peppers in what I can only assume to be moment of horrible stabbing pains in his brain at my unfortunate Beatles introduction.
So. Jesus. I wrote you an essay. That was not intentional. :D