I grew up listening to music. My Dad was a child of the 60s and enjoyed bands such as The Byrds, The Rolling Stones, and The Beatles. My Mom on the other hand was a child of the 70s, and love the music of Edward Bear, Dr. Hook, and Sweeney Todd. I grew up with this music. I am forever grateful to my parents for introducing me to such great music. Bands like The Guess Who, BTO, and Trooper were a big part of my childhood. Although I didn't appreciate it as much as I do now. As a kid I didn't really have an interest in music. As I grew older a lot of different bands entered my life. Let's start with the first album I ever bought with my own money. "Weird Al" Yankovic's Bad Hair Day. I was so in love with this album, and now as an adult, I appreciate it on a higher level. Let's fast forward to 1999. I was at school in the gym for something, and someone played Green Day's Nimrod album. I had never heard of this band, but was intrigued by their music. So on one family vacation, I was able to go to a record store, and buy the album. And it changed me. I listened to the song The Grouch for hours on end. I had never heard music like this before. So fast paced and fun. It wasn't until a few years later that I really became a fan of punk. At that time I was a subscriber to Rolling Stone Magazine, and every year they would chronicle who was going into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. The year was 2003, and that was the year The Clash were inducted. I had never heard them before, but below their picture on suggested listening was the song "London Calling," I listened to it and I was hooked. I soon heard "Rock The Casbah," and I wanted to find everything out I could about this band. So on a trip to Winnipeg I had $20 in my pocket, and I bought The Essential Clash. One of the best albums I have ever bought. This band was my introduction to punk rock; songs like "Tommy Gun," "London Calling," and "Complete Control," just blew me away. I loved how fast paced and fun they were.
From there I discovered other British punk bands such as The Damned, The Buzzcocks, The Sex Pistols, and so many great others. This opened my mind and my world to punk rock. From there, I started listening to 90s punk bands such as Rancid, The Offspring, and NOFX. I wanted to learn all I could about this great music. I have watched many documentaries on the subject such as Bloodied But Unbowed, which was a look at the Vancouver BC Punk Scene. Punk—Attitude, a film by Don Letts that looked on many different bands from many different scenes. Such as the California scene with bands such as The Weirdoes and many others. It also explored Ska, which I really dug. Bands such as Madness, The Specials, and The Beat, gave me another avenue of music. Then the Documentary, The Last Pogo Jumps Again, a look at the Toronto, Ontario punk scene of the late 70s with bands such as Johnny and The G-Rays, Teenage Head, and many others. I also discovered Hardcore, a different kind of punk rock from the early 1980s. Bands like Black Flag, Bad Brains, and Minor Threat bringing their own style to the genre. I am one of those people that likes to scour the internet and find new bands. I even came across an African punk documentary, which opened me up to bands like Hog Hoggidy Hog, and The Rudimentals. Also I can't forget about third wave ska. I have always been a fan of bands who have horns in their music, so bands like, The Mighty Mighty Bosstones, Reel Big Fish, and Fishbone were right up my alley.
My favorite kind of music to listen to is punk rock. I love how fast paced and happy it is. I am the kind of guy who gets depressed, but punk rock and music in general is always there to pick me back up. And it just wasn't about the music, punk rock was, it is about staying true to your roots, and not changing who you are. Being happy with yourself, something I'm still working on. Punk also taught me about DIY (Do It Yourself), the concept of, if nothing is going to happen, you have to make it happen yourself. This is a creed I definitely follow. In short, punk rock has made my life better, I listen to all kinds of music, but to me punk is the best. All I can say is Thank You. Thank you to Green Day for opening the door, and thank you to all the bands whose songs make my life better.