By Joshua Blake
It’s just about 3:00 a.m. here while I’m on vacation down in Florida, and I can’t help but think of the title to my blog – more importantly, what it means.
Music has played an integral role in shaping the person I’ve become even at this very moment in time. I believe it’s always given me piece from my mind’s consistent woes. Although I didn’t become the music addict that I am today until I was 14 or 15 years old, and everyone has their favorite bands for their reasons.
That’s when I discovered Guns N’ Roses for the first time, and they subsequently became my favorite band. I’ve watched their MTV concert from The Ritz in 1988 possibly a thousand times, and it still brings me back to the moment when I was 15 – I thank my father for that. “You’ve never heard ‘Nightrain’ or ‘Rocket Queen?'” he asked me.
Guns N’ Roses are the reason why I like Rock music. They inhibited free-will and freedom of expression – to the likes of which I’ve never seen until that day on YouTube watching that concert. I branched out to other artists, too, like Ozzy, Van Halen, Iron Maiden, Judas Priest, and Mötley Crüe.
Mötley’s stuck with me, too, however. They are an extremely close second to Guns. Mötley Crüe is the anthithesis of what rock stars are – and what a rock band is. And I love their songs, and some of their lyrics are great. It’s why bassist Nikki Sixx is my idol – his lyrics can penetrate the depths of one’s mind. This especially comes out with his other band, Sixx:A.M. – where the lyrics are heartfelt and amazing.
Once my adolescent days were long gone and I was in college, I took a history of rock n roll class. That was so eye-opening to me – more over was the fact that rock was always being scrutinized by the general public. Elvis was too flashy – as was Little Richard – because of their performance abilities. Many artists back in the 50’s and 60’s were gay, and rock music was their escape from a judgemental society – especially back then.
You don’t see that judgement in music so much anymore, but different still scares others. Lorde is amazingly talented, and some people don’t understand her. It’s because she speaks her mind and doesn’t care about what society says – that’s about as rock n roll as you can get.
Lady Gaga’s like that, too. She’s always been talented – and different – while pushing boundaries. I have great admiration and respect for her. I wouldn’t of said that five or six years ago, but as a musician and a writer myself, I respect so many other artists now. I love words and the way they can sink into your skin. But I always seem to find that untapped, uncanny ability to make people second guess themselves in rock music.
PVRIS is my go-to band at the moment. Lyndsey Gunnulfsen is a thought-provoking writer. This girl is 21-years-old, and she just fucking hits you like a ton-of-bricks. “You give me something to think about that’s not the shit in my head. You’re a miracle.” She sings in the chorus of “St. Patrick.” It’s a song about love and the impact someone can have on us and our thoughts – and how people give us comfort.
“I’m watching, I’m waiting, I’m aching, suffocating. I’m breathing, I’m speaking. Can you hear me? I’m screaming for you,” she sings in “White Noise.” The level of emotion in her voice as soothing as it is heartbreaking.
There’s just something about music that is so relatable to how you feel, and each of us have our own taste in music that tells our story. What type of music speaks to you?