by Amy Atkins
As a teen, I didn't understand my grandparents' taste in music. The music they listened to seemed so archaic. And though my father introduced me to rock and roll (the Beatles, the Stones, Kiss), I thought even his tastes were a bit prehistoric.
But the other day when I put "Conflicting Emotions" by Split Enz on my brand-new ION USB turntable I realized two things: One, I actually asked for and got a new turntable for my last birthday. Yes, owning a record player and possessing a record collection have some vintage cred, but that's not why I have them. Two, I have a better understanding of why my foregrandfathers liked the music they like. I own a record player for the same reason I like music of the '80s. Those are the sounds that swirled around my head during a very pivotal point in my life: my teens. I have no desire to go back nor do I spend much time waxing nostalgic on that period. There's just something about the time when music first starts to make sense to you; when it becomes an important part of everything you do; even helps define who you are that sticks with you. And Split Enz sticks with me. As does the desire to hear them--and plenty of others--on vinyl. However, I asked for the ION becuase I'm not a caveman. Woman. Technology exists that makes some of favorite music portable and who am I to turn my back on technology?
I mentioned Split Enz's 1983 "Conflicting Emotions" specifically because the songs on this album that spoke to me when I was younger still speak to me. Bob Lefsetz says why better than I do: Silent Letter