When I was a teenager, our music teacher was Mr Hailey. A kind, helpful chap, he was the organist at the local Catholic church. Despite his name, he was very unlikely to rock around the clock and I’m afraid that despite my burning interest in music, the syllabus held little of interest to me. I was just waiting for lunchtime so I could devour the latest copy of Melody Maker or NME and plan which albums I was going to buy with the money from my paper round.
Fast forward to 2017. Yesterday, I accompanied my dilly dallying son to school. By chance, the first lesson was music. I’d heard about the music teacher who is too cool for school: she sings in a Deaf Metal band. So, after a chat with the classroom teacher, I asked if I could pay a visit to the music room. No problem, she’d take me over. On the way over, we chatted about nerdy music stuff. She was rather chuffed about the fact that she had seen Jimi Hendrix at the Gröna Lund funfair and that (also at Grönan) her future partner had been invited out on a date by one of the Ikettes. Being 17 and very bashful at the time, he had wilted at the very thought.
In the music room, the lads were putting away their guitars. The teacher is a tall statuesque Viking lass with shades of pink in her hair. They had been studying the role of the riff in rock music. The last part of the lesson was watching a clip from a programme in which Josephine Forsman, the drummer from Stockholm band Sahara Hotnights, travelled to Birmingham and met Tony Iommi to talk about Paranoid. And suddenly there was a rather aged Chris Welch from Melody Maker holding forth about the birth of metal music.
Here it was! The music lesson that I was dreaming of when I was 14.
My son of course was boooored. He was asking why Stormzy and his other grime favourites are not on the syllabus rather than all this pensioners’ music.
Anybody else have any positive or negative experiences from music lessons, either as a pupil or a teacher?