Friday, 16 June 2017

Column: Musical Memories

Just over a decade ago, when myself and my group of friends were in a college,we had a weekly summer tradition. That tradition became known as Beach Monday. Every Monday during the summer holidays we would pile into whoever-could-drive's cars and make the forty minute trip to Frinton, to play such fun games as beach volleyball, football, rounders and our, quite legendary, fort building competition. Team Dave and Voice were the best! Even all that time ago I was very passionate about forcing awesome punk music into my friends ears. I took it upon myself to make a CD for the car journey and insisted that we play it every week. This became the soundtrack of summers and even now I can pretty much remember every song that was on that CD.

You might be thinking "cool story, bro" or "That's lovely. You made a CD and played it to people, what's the point of this story?" The point of that story is this. Recently I made a Beach Monday playlist on my Spotify account (we're up to date with the technology these days!) and it got me fondly remembering some of the happiest times of my life growing up. This got me thinking about how wonderful music is for soundtracking certain memories from different periods of your life.

I'm sure that anyone reading this can think back to a particular period in their life and remember exactly the songs that they loved, even if everything else you were doing is a bit hazy. Without being too deeply scientific, I think it's absolutely incredible that there is some part of a person's brain that sorts out the music you loved with different events. I'm sure it's also the same for music you hate but we like to be positive here at Colin's Punk Rock World, so let's stick with the music that you loved.

Music is this powerful force that remains with you forever. Much like a scar but far more wonderful and a lot less painful and disfiguring. Something I've done since I started going to gigs is tracked every band I've seen (and the amount of times I've seen them), every venue I've been to and who I've been to gigs with. To go along with this I've created a massive playlist on Spotify documenting my gig going history. Whilst making this playlist I've gone along with the general rule of picking a song from each band at the gig that isn't necessarily my favourite song that was played but the song that I think will give the longest serving memories. For instance, I saw Less Than Jake at Koko in March 2015 and they played Automatic and slipped in their song We're All Dudes from the Good Burger soundtrack (if you don't know the film Good Burger I'm not sure we can be pals). This was amazing, something I want to remember for a long time, so Automatic goes onto the playlist. I absolute love listening to this playlist, it's so much fun to hear these songs and think back to the many fantastic times I've had seeing my favourite bands. Or times where I've met cool people. Or times I had an interesting adventure due to a gig. Or that time I got kicked in the head at Slam Dunk watching Zebrahead. Or that other time I got kicked in the head watching Iron Chic at the Fighting Cocks in Kingston. Memories are ace. I plan to keep adding to this playlist for as long as I keep going to gigs so I can keep remembering the great times and bore whoever I might be listening to it with of stories of the past.

If anyone is interested here is that Beach Monday playlist.

This column was written by Colin Clark.