I soared through my grade two piano exam with flying colors and dropped it the day the certificate arrived in the mail, never plunking another key.
I stem from a long line of Irish singers and entertainers and there are times I can belt one out like an angel, although, the next note from my mouth could send you running for the hills. Clearly, I didn’t join the clan, despite the fortitude of flatteries flowing from my mum.
I grew up listening to my parents’ Beatles, The Police, Clapton, Joplin, Dylan, Richards, Hook and Van Morrison; the tunes blaring from the four foot tall floor speakers as I toiled through chores; the melodies making the tasks somewhat less agonizing.
Overjoyed to induct their longstanding turntable atop my dainty dresser at twelve, my age and stage soon drew me away from their vinyls and bewitched me with pop radio, spurring endless calls to the local station to request Bryan Adams’ Heaven.
Sleepy Saturday mornings saw my Dad and I devouring syrup soaked pancakes, butter-smothered toast and bacon, savory omelets with sizzling sausage all the while gorging on Celine Dion, The Rankins, Air Supply, Rita McNeil and Enya. Okay, it was a transitional time.
I cruised the strip with cavorting companions, consuming Sheena Easton, Pat Benatar, Whitney Houston, Van Halen, The Bangles and later, Queen, Yaz, The Cult, The Cure, Depeche Mode, Duran Duran, HoJo and Erasure.
I ate pizza, painted my nails and tied lace ribbon in my hair while memorizing the lyrics to Crazy For You…
As a young adult I guzzled U2, The Eagles, Billy Joel, Sinead O’Connor, Jewel and the Eurythmics while harboring some kind of twisted half crush on Michael Jackson.
Despite my ambiguous relationship with instrumentals, I’m an absolute sucker for a rock ‘em, sock ‘em voice. I don’t always have to fall in love with the song, the genre doesn’t always have to be up my alley and I don’t even have to like the singer.
Something about the voice can convert me. If it prickles my skin, stirs superfluous surges, ravages my mood or awakens my senses, I’m in, and I’ve never seemed to give a busted string what song everyone else is singing.