Coming of Age music in the nineties

Just watching T in the Park and The Killers with adoring teens gazing up at the stage, no doubt feeling anything is possible flanked by friends, music and alcohol. It doesn’t matter who you are and where you come from everyone has a song that they link with ‘coming of age’.

For me, a teen in the nineties, there are many contenders. Guns n Roses was certainly an influence in my younger teens, particularly ‘Sweet Child O’Mine’; ‘November Rain’ and ‘Paradise City’. Manic Street Preachers and ‘My Little Empire’ (I am drawn by good guitar intros); (I’ve had to interrupt this list in disbelief that The Killers are doing a version of Tiffany’s ‘I think we’re alone now’ – I am confused that the crowd know the lyrics…has this been re-released? It was Number One when I was 8…..)

Anyway, back to the list. The Bluetones, Blur (not as keen on Oasis); Alanis Morisette; Roni Size;Armand Van Helden; Tina Moore (Never Gonna Let You Go) …mixing up musical genres quite a lot here. I liked Rock music AND Garage. Nirvana is of course there, so is Greenday and Foo Fighters. I also liked Courtney Love’s Hole Album and ‘Doll Parts’. Travis has got to be there and some Metallica. The Fugees, Lauryn Hill, Jamiroquai are all in the top 5.

But If I had to be pick just one to sum up my feelings at the peak of my teens it has to be Skunk Anansie and Hedonism..‘Just because you feel good doesn’t make you right’ genius lyrics.

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The best West End musicals

I had the pleasure today of watching a youth production of West End favourite ‘Cats’. The last time I saw it was when I was a kid in the eighties and I had forgotten how good the soundtrack was. ‘Jellicle’ cats was one of my favourites. My daughter was tapping her toes to the beat the whole way through and I kept having to remind myself that the oldest actors on stage were teenagers. ‘Memories; is another timeless classic with a melancholic verse that is sad and beautiful all at once. It is a shame it is no longer on the West End.

Starlight Express is also experiencing another come back with a tour that commences in Brighton. I really want to see it but it only runs until the beginning of January. Again, the last time I saw this I was 8. I remember everything about it was an assault on your senses – from the pyrotechnics to the costumes and the music.

Another musical I particularly enjoyed was ‘My Fair Lady’ – particularly the scene at the racecourse with amazing choreography as they sing while swinging their binoculars from one side of the stage to the other as if the racehorses have just shot past. The Woman in Black has been at the West End since the 80s and is still on show today. It is successful because it plays on the audience’s imagination with excellent acting and an electric atmosphere.

I am so glad my daughter enjoys the theatre and acting. I have always had a mild interest in theatre but her enthusiasm has rekindled a childhood enjoyment of theatre that went as years passed.

I am typing this blog while scanning you tube for some of the best band music of the past few decades. I am drawn to tracks with a phenomenal guitar intro – so far I have enjoyed:

– Manic Street Preachers – If you Tolerate this

– Biffy Clyro – Many of Horror

– Nirvana (well this is quite a long list: In Bloom, Heart shaped box, Breed and arguably the best Lounge Act)

More to add in another blog soon!

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