A Musical Education
by Michele Christopher

By The Germ

Getting into music is one of the best experiences in my life. Well, I think it is one of the best experiences in many people's lives. Some of you probably remember the first time you realized you were hooked to music as clear as a bell, I don't remember exactly, but I have a reason. I was five. Most kids don't REALLY get into it until around their teenage years, my friends didn't, a lot of people I know didn't. Maybe I'm not the only one, but really how many of you took music seriously when you were a kid. You usually listened to whatever had an upbeat and made you happy. But me, I had three older brothers who, at that age, were 9, 12, and 13. They definitely were into music. You may not believe me, but I'm not lying.

kid-hair.jpgIt started for me when I was two. I don't have really many memories from that age. But, according to my brothers, I would attempt to sing along with "Smells Like Teen Spirit". Apparently they also taught me a nifty maneuver called headbanging. I had good brothers, I think. 1994-1995 though were easily the years that got me into music. The magic three bands were Nirvana, The Offspring, and Green Day*, yes Green Day. My brothers collectively had albums like Nevermind, Siamese Dream, Mellon Collie and the Infinite Sadness, Smash, Ignition, Dookie, Insomniac, Superuknown, and Core. All those famous 90's bands and albums. They were played over and over. Then I just seemed to really get into this stuff, I was always asking to borrow an album. I begged my parents for a CD player until their heads exploded. All this time though I never really knew what punk was at all.

Learning about punk music was the ONLY good thing about middle school (which is bullshit, seriously, how can you be late to lunch, then get detention for it). And it all started with, you guessed it, Green Day. They were on some television show and were talking about their influences. Then the magical words that spilled out of (of all people) Billie Joe's mouth that changed my life (Well not that dramatic, but it changed how I looked at music). He mentioned the Ramones, and Clash. I quickly asked, "Who are they?" to myself. After that I was asking people who they were all day long. I found out about the Ramones, but it was kind of on accident. I was watching the movie "Carpool" and "I Wanna Be Sedated" came on. After that I watched the credits until I found out who did that song. BOOM! the Ramones. I was hooked. I got Ramones Mania soon after that.

punk-ass-kids.jpgI found out about The Clash from my brother who had bought the Singles album. So to make that story short, hooked. I listened to that album to no end. For many years after that I slowly got into punk, band after band, getting deeper into it as time went by. Every band just led to another great band. I was on a high. Along the way. though, I was listening to some music that was regrettable. But since then my music tastes have changed, the high has gone away, and I mostly don't listen to same music I used to when I was a kid. But the Ramones and Clash will always have a special place in my heart. And I realize that I have some cool brothers, with a wide variety of music tastes. Their music tastes have changed some too and we all went in different directions, so we all end up arguing and recommending music a lot. Here are their approximate music tastes.

Oldest brother - He likes basically a little of all kinds of rock. Screamo, Emo, Classic Rock, Punk, Pop Punk, Metal, Industrial. Whatever, he likes some of it.

Older brother #2 - He likes everything, and I'm not kidding. Have you ever meet someone with She Daisy and Megadeath is the same music collection? Then you got to meet him. Brittany Spears, Dead Kennedys, Snoop Dogg, NIN, The Dicks, Cyndi Lauper, Led Zeppelin. he likes everything.

Older brother #3 - He likes Metal basically. New stuff, old stuff, and Classic Rock. Pretty much sums it up. Oh, he also likes some rap.

Me - Punk, Post-Punk, British Invasion (Beatles etc.), Pre-Punk, some Classic Rock, Rockabilly. Pretty much my tastes.

It's fun to live in a family who loves music.

Later Days,
The Germ

:) <------ yeah I'm cool

* The Germ still listens to Green Day and says "yeah yeah, I don't flaunt it or even really defend the band at all. So bite me, I don't care, it's my really guilty pleasure."

Guest Author Archives


yay germ! hi hi hi!


hi kali


dear god germ you make me feel so old. i was in high school when nirvana came to town and smells like teen spirit was on the radio. i also had to walk to school barefoot both ways. uphill.


Yeah, feeling old here, too. I was 5 years out of hight school when Nevermind came out.

The good news is that my 8 and 10 year old boys have discovered Nirvana. Good boys.


Hi Germ! I've always wondered how you knew so much.


I'm a lot like your older brother, I like almost all kinds of music. I figure I can find whatever I want to suit my mood, you know?

I remember when I started to make my own music choices, and then again, when I made my own "rebellious" music choices (the stuff my parents didn't want me to listen to). It was an amazing experience, and those bands will always stay with me.


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