Breaking out to get into the new

After a while, or rather, an age, I realize that people tend to grow attached to one form of music or another. Yes, that is you West Coast Swing DJs! Not everyone, just a few guilty ones. *death glare* you know who you are.
Lost in a moment...Heh
Regardless of the decade you grew up in, everyone has a music tell.
People around my parents’ age have music that range from the Beach Boys, Barry Manilow, DeepPurple, Elvis, to the Rolling Stones or Led Zepplin for the more rebellious. Which brings me to the point of this post – what is your music tell and how the hell do you break new music in?
You don’t have one? Tsk, tsk... What song pops into your head when you’re stressed or need something to sing to or are driving? A lot of people turn to the music that they grew up to and that is the music that often soothes them. A lot of dancers I know have a few pieces that they practice to, but that’s it. Once they are out of the practice room, they actually listen to a lot of music to prep choreography, incorporate different styles add flavor to their pieces.
Not many people actually break out of the musical genres that they love. I am guilty of this too. A child of the 80s, I grew up in a family that loved live music, Motown, rock, blues and slick funkadelic sounds. Music was about the beat, groove and voices that influenced generations of musicians and audiophiles. 
I loved and still love all my pop confections. They grew into a love for the 80s rockers, the gravelly angst of grunge and then in the 90s it was hello Britpop and where the hell did all these awesome bands come from? There were the happy-sounding beats but what made it so different was the lyrics were smart. There was no ‘I’m so lonesome I could die’, instead it was about girls who liked boys who need girls who are boys or boys who wanted to wear my face like you, Shiseido MAC and Maybelline and OMG, Take That! A boy band with a member who actually wrote their lyrics. Damn! Thanks to friends, I let more influences in by attending a shitload of concerts and musicals. I also briefly worked for a local music outlet whose staff resembled the staff in Empire Records. The HighFidelity characters where what we eventually grew up to be. Some of us still make mixed tapes, we have lists for almost every mood and some of us can only express our feelings through the songs of others, because, who else can be as eloquent?
But breaking out of our staid musical cycles is a journey of discovery. Only you will know what you like…I tried several times to get into the Radiohead madness but all I liked were three or four songs. I can’t fathom dance music and all its different genres, some country makes me glassy eyed and classical music, let’s not go down there. 

To break out of your cycle, I’d suggest listening to as many different types of artists that you can. Spread yourself out to different genres, ask your friends what they like and see if you like it too. Who knows what you’ll find? I found artists like Florence + the Machine, Mumford & Sons and M83. Recently, I've recently rediscovered my love for blues and am tracking down some new artitsts.
So, don’t get stuck in a rut. Try some new music today. Just like this fella...

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Ever prodded a sleeping dragon, only to have it whip up and bite you in the ass? Well, neither have I. But I advocate that you should try everything...once ;P


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