Wednesday, August 9, 2017
Heavy Metal Welcomes You!
Growing up in a small town in a house where Rock and Roll was considered “the Devils’ music” and even the Bee Gees were considered risqué, I was not exposed to a lot of choices when it came to music. There were only 2 kinds of music according to my dad, County and Western. The rest was garbage. I rebelled, of course, by listening to Michael Jackson, Cyndi Lauper, The Beatles and even Tom Petty, but that’s about as far as I would push it. Needless to say, this turned me into a person who shied away from anything “heavy”.
Sure, I liked the old-school rock and roll like AC/DC and Van Halen. They were super edgy from my narrow point of view, taboo in my house growing up and something you only heard at a friend’s house. So, as you can imagine, I had never been to a heavy metal show, nor listened to the music. Even though I had never experienced it, I made a decision early on that I just knew it wouldn’t be for me. It took until I was in my early 40’s for everything to change.
When my new boyfriend told me he owned a Heavy Metal record label called Ripple Music, I was less than enthused. The idea of listening to this music was not appealing to me at all, but I really liked him and thought I should at least give it a try. My opportunity to expand my horizons came a couple of weeks later when he invited me to go listen to this band he and his partner, Todd, were thinking of signing called Zed. My first reaction internally was “I can sit through a few songs to spend time with this cool guy”, so with a lot of trepidation, I went to see Zed.
We were meeting my boyfriend’s partner, his wife and the band at the restaurant before the show. Great, I thought, an even more intimate setting for me to be really out of place in! My first impression of the guys in this band was that they looked a bit scary, intimidating and I would have nothing to talk to them about. I didn’t really know Todd or his wife, Corinne, either. So, I sat quietly watching them interact. My boyfriend, who I knew as John but they called Pope for some reason, introduced me and we sat down to eat burgers together. What I found in a very short amount of time is that my impression of these people and the band in general could not have been more wrong. Todd and Corrine were warm and welcoming to me, even though I felt it was obvious I felt completely out of place.
The guys from Zed were funny, smart, engaging and interesting conversationalists. I found myself relaxing and feeling comfortable in this world that, before that night, was so foreign to me. Once dinner was over it was time to watch them perform and once again I thought, there is no way I will enjoy this, but I really like these people so it will be cool to see them do their thing! Once again I was wrong. What I found was that I enjoyed the show very much. It was energetic, fun and before long I felt myself moving to the music.
After the show, I was baffled and shocked at how this one night, this one band had completely changed everything I believed about this music forever. If you had told me I would ever be in the front row of a Heavy Metal show throwing devil horns before that night, I would have said you had lost your mind but today that is where you can find me quite often and I couldn’t be happier. I am forever grateful to Zed for being the wonderful people and musicians they are, and I am so very happy to call them friends. I learned a valuable lesson about staying open-minded that has translated to all kinds of different and wonderful life experiences.