|My music, nowadays, is heavily influenced by my kids and I listened to songs that sing about a father's love and role for his children.|
Growing up in a rural community known for its rolling fields and silos, it was hard to avoid the influence of country music. Some of my peers tried. Me...well...I embraced it throughout most of my life. I listened to other music, mainly rock from the 80's and 90's hair bands, but I always came back to country. My Mom always had it playing loud during the summer months. When I hear Kenny Rogers and Dolly Parton's version of "Islands in the Stream" the faint smell of pledge wafting through a slightly dusty screen door, across the dirt driveway, as it mixes with the exhaust from the "Bluebird" school bus. That is a comfortable and idylic memory of returning home from school during a warm early June day.
Country music takes me places in my mind and lately there have been some great songs put out that have taken my to great places. Fishing with my late grandfather (miss you gramp and I'm still spitting on worms.) Sitting on a buddy's tailgate while we hang with friends along a back farm field. Six kids, travelling two hours, one way, in the back of a camper van, to a hockey game while the country music was drowned out to laughter and wrestling. Back in those days seat belts were optional, but honestly, I wouldn't promote that risk.
Music lately causes me to swell and want to sing out loud. There is one problem with that, I'm not that gifted of singer. When I'm in the kitchen however, doing dishes, I can't help it and I'm sure that if you walked by the house during one of those moments you would hear how poor of singer I truly am. Driving long distances also gives me reason to sing outloud, at least when I'm alone. Today was a sunny winter day and a few times as I sat in my office, I was singing to Luke Bryan's "We Rode In Trucks." So much in the song I can relate too and that is what makes country so great. With digital capabilities now you can go way back and pull songs forward and videos just give the music that much more.
I still listen to other music. A lot of kids tunes lately thanks to my children. I enjoy christian rock too but I always come back to country when I need to smile or need a reminder of who I really am. It's not the music so much as the memories tied to the songs and I want to hold on to and cherish them for a long time to come. Hopefully I'll pass down to my kids the memories and music that my parents were gracious enough to pass down to me. My Mom's country music will always be comforting and will always sound like home.