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What can we do to help our kids enjoy and discover more music?

It was very sad to see Eddie Van Halen pass away recently. He was such a super star in the guitar world and you would struggle to find a guitar player who wasn’t influenced by him!

This got me thinking after chatting with my parents about how I learnt lots of his riffs as a child through guitar magazines but also how I was so ‘into’ bands and music generally and would listen to albums over and over again. This I fear is less common than ever. It would be very interesting to see what your thoughts are on this and if you and your children get ‘into’ a certain artist or band and listen to the whole record and know it inside out.

I find that with playlists on Spotify and YouTube videos young people tend to listen to one song of an artist and then move on and so they never really discover anyone long enough to get inspired by them. I feel every act gets watered down to just the one song that’s being pushed and then you move on and forget about them.

I know I probably sound like an old man wishing things were as they used to be but I really don’t feel like that. I think it’s great that music is so accessible and easy but I think because it’s so accessible it’s almost impossible to know what to listen too and very hard to search through all the noise to get to the good stuff. And it’s especially difficult for a child to have the skills and patience to actively discover music when there are so many other distractions on screens.

In many ways I think it was easier and less distracting to have a CD in my hand and a collection in front of me and a simple choice of what to play! I actually think this makes it a lot easier when you are young. I know that even from my small experience as a parent my son loves to pick out a dvd and put it on.

A physical format is simple and clear and you don’t end up on instagram or Facebook or flicking on to the next song, and in reality not actually listening to the music you meant to listen too!

My hope and attempt with my son will most definitely be for Reuben to have a CD player and his own CDs. I think it’ll give him ownership of the music and teach him to enjoy his collection and treasure it as I did and still do. I’ve got a healthy vinyl collection these days that is slowly growing!

I’d love to know what other parents think and if this would be something you’d try? After all you can grab a CD player very cheaply these day’s and CDs are probably the cheapest format available. Even though I guess it’s more stuff in the house! How about a kids CD subscription service? A new CD album a month with notes about the record and maybe even sheet music for you to learn to play a song or two!?

Well there’s an idea! But anyway, I’d love to know if you do anything special to introduce your children to new music or if it’s just through the radio. Maybe this blog will make you think about it and you’ll try something like a family record of the week. Who knows.

I just think it’s easier than ever but for some reason it seems rarer and rarer to find kids that are really into their music. They love playing but maybe they haven’t yet discovered the love of listening.

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