When I was kid, I listened to the radio. I also overheard the sounds of rock & roll emanating from my brother's room like the smell of bacon or coffee wafting through the house. Yes, music to me was just as awe inspiring as bacon or coffee is to many of you. Maybe I had some predisposition to loving music or had it in my veins or DNA or blood or whatever, but I think it's more likely that I got turned onto music by what was around me and especially by my brother (I have him to thank for the monster created).
Have any of you listened to the radio recently? Not NPR, not KEXP, but whatever is popular, whatever stations kids are listening to. Probably not. We're old and it's too depressing. We have no tolerance or patience to wade through the sea of stale garbage that is out there and presented (or crammed down our throats) to us today as music. Generic, boring, same-sounding, often guitar-less, sometimes talent-less, repetitive crap. Maybe I'm being harsh and maybe it's that same old generational gap, but I would feel far less inspired by music as a kid growing up today. I probably wouldn't care at all. There's no feeling, no soul, and it all sounds the same. The songwriting is all about the same few subjects: love, sex, or how cool whatever "artist" who's "singing" is, and the song structure is short and repetitive, maybe verse, chorus, same verse, then repeat chorus ad nauseam.
What I am suggesting here is that the love of music is much like the art of story telling. It has to be passed down and shared around by US to continue to live and grow. Maybe, as a guitar teacher, one of my jobs is to turn kids on to new music that they would otherwise never hear. I can do this through teaching them new songs on guitar, making them CDs, recommending music they might like (or might not), and encouraging their parents to expose them to music. So parents, I challenge you to expose your kids to all the things you love (if you're not already doing so) including diverse styles of music. If anyone has other ideas on how this can be done, I'd love to hear from you.
The point is that it's our jobs as adults to nurture kids and give them options and opportunities, so that they can see that there is more out there for them. It is our job to help foster a love of music, art, each other, stewardship toward themselves, the world and others and all the other good things out there that we feel are important. Creativity and love of music are no less important in this list than anything else. They are just like reading. They lead to so many other things and open up so many doors to the rest of the world.