Music, My Stories

Community

My dad always said to me that “you learn outside the classroom”. The classroom to him (after Primary School), was a way to create robots for the degree factories. There was no learning happening there, just do as your told type of obedience.

“You would have to write an essay on a topic that’s been picked for you, a summary on a book that’s been picked for you and a book which you also had to read. You are taught a history that some faceless person decided you needed to know.” That’s what my Dad said.

“Where are the life skills about taxes, the share market and the property market?” my Dad would say. “And teachers are meant to plant the seed for expanding your mind. Not enclosing it.”

As my dad put it, he had to learn/figure out what to do. And when it came to money it was an expensive mistake, because he was financially illiterate. There was no one around to teach him or show him. Only people to get rich from selling debt.

And he would tell me, how many people learned to change a tyre for the first time was when they got a flat?

Its all trial and error.

Like when you pick up that hammer and chisel and decide to do some chiselling. When you start doing this, you realise that you are pretty crap at it, because you end up missing the chisel and hitting your hand with the hammer. It hurts like a MF, but you learn from it and suddenly, you are an expert at using a chisel with a hammer.

And the best form of learning is music. You know instantly if you are doing the right thing or not, by the sounds. If you hit a bum note, the feedback is instant, telling you, “hey, hang on for a second there, you hit a F# instead of an F”.

By learning it opens the doors to forming an identity.

Heavy Metal and Hard Rock music opened up my eyes to a lot of things and the songs opened up doors for my learning. The imagery of the album covers and the lyrics of bands, it more or less set the tone for the kind of movies I would also gravitate to.

And the community I grew up in, also assisted in my identity. Creating a metal and rock lifestyle. And then we grew up and got out of the town and now that community is so fragmented.

But it’s still a community.

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A to Z of Making It, Influenced, Music, My Stories, Unsung Heroes

Learning

Dee Snider once said “nothing lasts forever”. You are on top today and forgotten the next. The news cycle is so fast that no one even remembers what happened last week.

And I’m constantly in a state of learning. I like to read and learn new things. I like to acquire new skills. More so now than ever before.

I’ve always told everyone that Maiden made me want to learn, because of their songs. And I always got blank stares when I said that.

So I started to explain.

I read the Bible because of “Revelations” and “Number Of the Beast”.

I researched “Alexander The Great” because of the song. I read the poem of the Ancient Mariner because of them and the story of the “Phantom Of The Opera” and the mythology of the “Flight Of Icarus”.

I got an A when we studied Ancient Egypt because “Powerslave” made me interested in that era. I read up on the Battle Of Britain because of “Aces High”. I got to understand the Doomsday Clock and what it actually meant to forecast “Two Minutes To Midnight”.

“Mother Russia” got me reading up on the Tsars. “The Trooper” got me reading up on the “Crimean War” and “Where Eagles Dare” got me interested in World War II again, hence the reason why I kept getting A’s in history. Plus let’s not forget Churchill’s speech which is used to great effect in “Live After Death”. As I type this I’m hearing “we will never surrender” as the band launches into “Aces High”.

“Genghis Khan” was an unknown name back then so I had to check it out and I had to look up the meaning for “Purgatory”.

And the covers. I stared at em for long periods of time and tried to draw em myself. Another source of learning a new skill. Same deal with the logo.

That band was huge in getting me curious.

And I see that same sense of learning happening with my children today. From the TV shows and movies they’ve watched, they have built their own LEGO creations, wrote their own stories and filmed their own stop motion movies.

Be influenced and never stop learning.

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