Have Some Cake (and Parenting of Course)

In honor of the Grammy’s I was planning on doing a post of the WORST songs ever (Rhiannon, McArthur Park, Spill the Wine, Sylvia’s Mother, Seventeen, That horrible roller skate/key song, The Thong Song, Free Bird, anything featuring Barbara Streisand, Ariana Grande, St. Vincent, or The Doobie Brothers.) I decided to skip it for something not so negative. Musical taste is so subjective.

But it was fun this summer driving across the endless Utah desert with my child, after the air conditioner had failed, listening to the worst songs ever. Let me explain…when a song on the “worst songs of all time” list came on I’d turn it up as part of my daughter’s cultural education. She listened to the entire performance of McArthur Park. I had to explain that the cake out in the rain and finding the recipe was a metaphor for lost love or some bull shit like that, while my seventeen year old child laughed out loud. We both laughed out loud in our 400 degree F car driving along about two hundred miles from the nearest town.

Everything in life isn’t good, no matter how hard you try to put that twist on your child rearing philosophy. At least there are times, like with music, when you can use humor to teach your kid about bad taste, bad judgement, bad fashion, bad friends, bad politics, and all of those weird things that come across our pathway.

Music, like art, literature, and cats, is something you can share with your kids. It brings people together. Stay with me on this because I know a lot of people hate their kids music. At least you can make an effort to understand what they like, and why they like it. Or maybe you can find something new together. Expand your horizons. Take a leap of faith and turn to a different number on the radio dial together. You might hate it. You might love it. But you did it together – with your kid.

Now for the real reason I brought up music. Yesterday I posted a story about a couple of Vampire kids in college called “Why I Hate Valentine’s Day.” Blog traffic was through the roof (because I am the Queen of Love Letters). But NOBODY, not a single person mentioned the reference to a song in the story. Oh come on guys, humor me a little.

And yes, I do love each and every one of you who reads and follows this blog.

OK, here it is. Listen and look for it.

Listen to the next songs too. Have fun even if you don’t like it. Or as your mom would say, “Don’t complain, it’s good for you.” Here are a couple of the best covers ever. Yes, listen to the Vampire – it’s good for you. Don’t complain.

By the way, the band CAKE is from Sacramento, my hometown. We’re a creative kind of place.

~ Juliette aka Vampire Maman

 

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Thoughts on Music, Rock & Roll and Sharing with Your Teens (from the Vampire Mom)

Don’t tell me that you hate your kid’s music. Tell me that you encouraged them to branch out and listen to something new. Tell me that they discovered someone you like too. Tell me that you sang along to a song together. Tell me that you talk about music with your teen.

About Teens and Concerts

I get a lot of traffic on this blog from parents wondering if it is OK to take their kids to a Black Veil Brides concert. Yes, it is. Of course it is LOUD and everyone wears BLACK but the BVB band members give a great show. They also give a safe show. And they have a good message. If your child is under 13 I would not recommend it. Concerts are loud and everyone is packed in. But check out their web site and fan pages  or CLICK here for my article. I’ve taken a lot of teens (mine and friends) to concerts over the years. If you play it safe, check out the band ahead of time, check out the venue, be cool and be safe then it will be fun.

PLEASE DO NOT be an asswipe and drop off your teen young inexperienced teen alone (your under age 17 teen) without a parent or older sibling/friend who can be with them. That is just stupid. Kids get scared and into trouble if you pull shit like that. Remember YOU are the parent (that means you are mature enough to have kids and are responsible for them until they turn 18.)

Go to the concert. Share the music. Have fun even if it kills you. Most smaller venues have places for adults to sit or stand if the kids want to be someplace else. At BIG concerts, like the Fall Out Boy/Panic! at the Disco concert we saw in San Francisco this past fall, you should sit in the stands with your kids (I sat with 8 of them.) It is fun and you can sing along even if you are old.

Black Veil Brides Church of the Wild Ones Tour - Sacramento, CA

Black Veil Brides Church of the Wild Ones Tour – Sacramento, CA

 

 Music Education

There is a lot more to music than what is played on the radio. With YouTube, Pandora and the amazing and old-fashioned but highly successful “Word of Mouth”, kids can learn about thousands of wonderful musicians and musical style options. I am delighted at the variety of music the teens in my life listen to. From Japanese Pop to Alternative Pop Punk to Indie Country to Classical – you’d be surprised what inquisitive teens are listening to and talking about. And yes, we still listen to Weird Al together (the kids and me). Encourage you teens to explore music options.

It is also your job, as an adult, to teach the kids in your life about important music in your life. What did you listen to when you were a teen? What music influences your life? What music made you feel? How did the music of the 60’s, 70’s and 80’s (or whenever) influence social history and the music the kids are thinking about today?

 

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A few more words…

In my household we have a lot of different kinds of music. My brother Andrew is an opera singer. My husband likes heavy metal and classical and punk. My kids like Punk Pop and Alternative. At the skating rink we hear the old fashioned skate music played on an organ. I like it all. OK, I’ll admit that most people think my own taste in music is weird, but it isn’t (but I’ll keep it to myself for now.)

The key, as with everything, is to talk to your kids, share with them and discuss what you’re all listening to. And for YOU the adults – try listening to something new. You might just like it. I know you will.

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Related Links on Teens, Music and maybe even a little bit of Vampire stuff (it is all entertaining and/or informative.)

 

Have fun,

~ Juliette aka Vampire Maman

 

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