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Help in building a music Library

Sashoir

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Hullo everybody! I'm soliciting opinions here because I gather from reading many threads that there's a diverse set of musical tastes among the membership.
I'm hoping to put together a sort of "sampler" music library as I'm about to have a baby and I want her to be able to form her own musical tastes by exploration of it when she's a little older.
I have a fairly substantial library, but unsurprisingly, I don't have much music I don't care for, because I've already had the opportunity to explore much of what's out there and form my tastes. Obviously there's also music that I've never even heard of, so I'm sure it might be educational for me as well.

I'm looking for an album (maybe two) which are either: seminal/innovative in their genre in some sense; representative of the genre or period; or, representative of "important" artists. They don't need to be "the best"; just enough for her be a point of departure. The theory being that if you've been exposed to and really liked, say, Cream and Jimi Hendrix, you'd probably be able to find the Who and Mötörhead, & cetera on your own.

So I'm going to put down genres/styles that I'm aware exist and don't really care for/have representatives of, and what I think might be candidate albums (if I have any notions of what might be). For the pre-LP era I'll just find a compilation: I don't expect a kid in the 2020s is going to end up an Al Jolson fan, but I think it's still interesting to see how popular music evolves over time.

Happy to take suggestions for non-anglophone pop music if it's sufficiently differentiated (e.g. Tom Jobim or Georges Brassens, but probably not Johnny Hallyday).

1910s:
No idea. I have some vague notion that ragtime, dixie, barbershop, and Ivor Novello were big

1920s:
Pop
Something by Al Jolson?
Something by Eddie Cantor?
Jazz
Something by Fats Waller?
Something by the New Orleans Rhythm Kings?
Something by Jack Teagarden?

1930s:
Pop
Something by George Formby?
Something by Bing Crosby?
Country
Something by Hank Williams?

1940s:
Pop
Something by Gracie Fields?
Something by Cab Calloway?
Something by the Andrews Sisters?
Gospel
Something by the Golden Gate Quartet?
Something by the Five Blind Boys of Mississisppi?

1950s:
Pop
Something by Patti Page?
Something by Bobby Darin?
Rock
Something by Buddy Holly & the Crickets?
Something by Little Richard?
Something by Fats Domino?

1960s:
Pop
Something by the Monkees?
Pet sounds, The Beach Boys
Folk
The times they are a-changin', Bob Dylan
Parsley, Sage, Rosemary and Thyme, Simon & Garfunkel
Garage
Something by the Rascals or the Kingsmen?
Psychadelic
Something by Jefferson Airplane?
Something by the Byrds?
Reggae
Jimmy Cliff, Jimmy Cliff
Country
Something by Johnny Cash?
Something by Merle Haggerd?

1970s:
Country
Something by Dolly Parton?
Something by Willie Nelson?
Reggae
Something by Bob Marley and the Wailers?
Punk
Something by the Ramones?
Something by the Clash?

1980s:
Rap
8th wonder, Sugarhill Gang
Grandmaster Flash and his adventures on the wheels of steel, Grandmaster Flash & the Furious Five
Dance
Slave to the rhythm, Grace Jones
Country
Something by Dwight Yoakam?
Electronic
No idea.

1990s:
Pop
No idea.
Alternative
Something by Primus?
Something by the Pixies?
Rap
Midnight marauders, A Tribe Called Quest
Fear of a black planet, Public Enemy
(I know that ganster rap was also big here, but I'm not quite open-minded enough to buy that or death metal for my daughter)
Electronic
Something by the Orb?
Dance
Something by Frankie Knuckles?
Something by Technotronic?
Something by Jazzanova?

2000s:
No idea.

2010s:
No idea. Pop music pretty much all sounds like variations of 5 (not very good) songs to me. Happy to be corrected. Maybe I'm just old.

"Important" artists I know of but don't have any music by (and who aren't covered above):
Madonna
The Boss
U2
Crosby, Stills, & Nash
Leonard Cohen
Kate Bush
Michael Jackson
The Red Hot Chili Peppers

Thanks in advance,

S.
 

Chuckv

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Dude. Every teenager I know does NOT listen to popular music. In fact some despise pop. They fully embrace authentic passionate soulful excellence irrespective of general “importance”or “period”.

They spend time on mixtape websites as much Spotify. I think 6 months of no responses required one small opinion as to possibly the reason you received no responses.

The way we listened to music is sunsetting dude.

I’m in socal USA maybe your part of the world it’s different.

admire your effort to compile this historical list though. well done.
 

Galliardist

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This is a great project to educate yourself, but I don't think you need to do it for your daughter.
Make sure that she has music around her as she grows up. Start with the simple tunes and songs of children's entertainers - that sort of music exists for a reason, it's attractive to young minds - but have the music you, your partner and your friends love around her as well. Give opportunities to learn to play an instrument - no compulsion - and to dance.

The music you love is the music you can give her.

Anything else will seem forced. What's "good for her" or "educational", I don't think will cut it.

I think if we were to all talk about how we came to music (there's a thread idea!) you'd find that we fall into a couple of groups, those who absorbed music in their childhoods and never stopped, and those for whom a type of music accompanied their teenage growth/rebellion.
 
OP
Sashoir

Sashoir

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Thank you, both. Good points, well made.
 

aedagnino

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I agree with all of the above... my daughter's 10 and my son's 5 and I've sometimes felt the urge to 'educate' them but they'll mostly be slightly interested for a while and then quickly drift away. What I find has helped immensely is not caving or pandering exclusively to what's marketed as "kids music". Sure, there's lots of that that's actually great and makes them excited (which is a must) but for most of the time I just expose them to all kinds of music, "grown up" music, from all eras. The main hi fi system is in the living room where we spend most our time (even the dog) so they've been exposed all their lives to anything from Louis Armstrong's Hot Fives to Maria Schneider's Orchestra, Buddy Holly to King Gizzard and the Lizard Wizzard, Vivaldi to Louis Andriessen, Violeta Parra to Caetano Veloso... you get the drift. Just share the passion, they'll find the passion themselves. If they do, if not, well, just support whatever that is.
EDIT: Forgot to add that the main effect of this has been that it really keeps their minds open to new musical experiences, like when another kid labels something "weird" or "boring", my kids will just say "huh, sounds like jazz, or that big music without singers my dad listens to" or they are constantly (especially my eldest) trying to map out where some piece of music fits into genres ("is this jazz?" "is this funk or soul?"). Whatever else, it will help them do their own exploration further down the line when they'll finally find something "of their own".
 
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Helicopter

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They didn't really have albums in the contemporary sense before the LP medium necessitated it. The term comes from thise books of record sleeves that hold a collection of 78s like a photo album. The album as a cohesive artistic work came afterward.

That said, Woody Guthrie's Dust Bowl Balads is a great album, a thematic compilation that came much later than the recordings.

Hank Williams, George Jones, and Loretta Lynn are other great country artists.

My 4 year old boy loves Iron Maiden, George Thorogood, and King Missile, all from me playing them. My little girls like anything they can dance to that is loud with a strong beat. They all like the Frozen soundtracks. If they have fun while the music plays, then they like it.
 

JRS

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That's quite the list--no specific suggestions for the 60's but no albums from either the Stones or Beatles seems an oversight. Who too. For J. Airplane, Surrealistic Pillow is the seminal release which typifies the burgeoning psychedelic phase of the era. For Cash, Live from Folsom Prison is the one that revived his failing career due to drug addiction. Anyway just a few random thoughts, oh two others: perhaps a Presly album and some Bossa Nove to fill out late 50's early 60's--Stan Getz and J. Gilberto might be a nice addition

I applaud your effort, once upon a time I hoped to do the same thing. For Rock at least, might wish to look at The Rolling Stone's Greatest 500 albums of all time. IIRC Marvin Gaye tops the list and would add some R&B to the list.

. I'd love to see the readership here take on such a project that also values recording quality. There is a thread devoted to female vocalists that may be of potential interest.
 

Killingbeans

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My prediction:

The first half of her teens she'll be a mess of hormones and confusion. She'll listen to whatever you play for her, but will not be able to form any substantial opinions about it. She'll mostly listen to the same mindless drivel as her friends. Music will be a social tool for her. Whether it makes her "fit in" or not is far more important than actual preference.

The last half of her teens, the hormones and confusion will shift towards ego inflation, anxiety and rebelion. She'll listen some of the music you play, but only if she thinks it fits her desperate search for an identity. Mostly she'll listen to music that she thinks you hate. You'll probably like some of it, but she'll see you as an old idiot who doesn't really know what it's all about. It's the idea of you hating it, that's important. Sometimes she'll strike gold by pure chance, but most of the music will be a thin veneer of rebelion covering nothing but hot air.

In her 20s she'll finally beging to listen to stuff that she actually likes. Her choices will mainly be based on the accidental gold she found in her late teens. Some of the mindless drivel from her early teens will also have influence when she forms her guilty pleasures. She'll find a new interest in the music you played during her childhood. She'll gravitate towards the stuff that contributed to positive feelings in family situations.

In other words, she'll have no problem constructing her own understanding of preference and quality. Any conscious attempt from your side at "forming" it will be futile :D
 

JoeBrooklyn

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I can only suggest what worked for me as a kid: play the music you like and give her complete access to your library.

Let her go down every rabbit hole she finds - even if it lasts for weeks. Listen with her to whatever she likes when she offers (Disney, cartoon etc). Give her plenty of chances to pick the music in the car.

Share with her why you like a piece she likes or is curious about in your library when she asks, but don't preach or try to "educate". Tell here about who you were when that piece was first important you - in high school, traveling with friends, in college, first apartment, dating your spouse, etc. That will mean more than the music and will encourage her love music for herself in her own way.

At least that's what my parents did for me and it worked. They had hundreds of LPs, tapes and 45's ,and let me have at it. They also used me as free labor to keep their records clean and organized :)
 
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JRS

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My prediction:

The first half of her teens she'll be a mess of hormones and confusion. She'll listen to whatever you play for her, but will not be able to form any substantial opinions about it. She'll mostly listen to the same mindless drivel as her friends. Music will be a social tool for her. Whether it makes her "fit in" or not is far more important than actual preference.

The last half of her teens, the hormones and confusion will shift towards ego inflation, anxiety and rebelion. She'll listen some of the music you play, but only if she thinks it fits her desperate search for an identity. Mostly she'll listen to music that she thinks you hate. You'll probably like some of it, but she'll see you as an old idiot who doesn't really know what it's all about. It's the idea of you hating it, that's important. Sometimes she'll strike gold by pure chance, but most of the music will be a thin veneer of rebelion covering nothing but hot air.

In her 20s she'll finally beging to listen to stuff that she actually likes. Her choices will mainly be based on the accidental gold she found in her late teens. Some of the mindless drivel from her early teens will also have influence when she forms her guilty pleasures. She'll find a new interest in the music you played during her childhood. She'll gravitate towards the stuff that contributed to positive feelings in family situations.

In other words, she'll have no problem constructing her own understanding of preference and quality. Any conscious attempt from your side at "forming" it will be futile :D
As a psychiatrist and dad, I heartily concur. I see this effort as more of childhood exposure--when you hear great musicians talk about their childhoods, seems there is most always a strong influence as a kid, often to a wide variety of music. Gotta get those neural music pathways formed. I imagined once of bequeathing a thumb drive full of the greatest music to my late twenty something daughter, and decided it was a foolish fantasy--most likely scanned and then put in a drawer.

Edit: Oh and make a point of dancing with them while you expose them--the kinesthesia aspect reinforces learning and of course rhythm (and bonding!!) Reminds me there is a greta netflix doc on modern drummers that is terrific--many of these guys (and gals!) were drawn to drumming at a very early age, which I found fascinating.
 

pozz

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@Sashoir My dad made a collection for me. I ignored it until my late teens, and then I went through it all in detail. Some of my friends have done similar things and I've made lists of books, movies and music for the same reasons.

So expect it to gather dust until she's ready.

(1997) Biosphere - Substrata
 

Jimbob54

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Just give her access to whatever replaces Spotify and play music in your house a lot. As others have said, trying to educate won't work, give her the tools to educate herself.

EDIT- my boy is 7. We listen on car journeys. Half the journeys I listen to his choices (think Amazon's Kid Friendly Pop station), the other half he endures mine (everything good from the last 70 years :rolleyes:)- he has yet to like anything of mine and vice versa.
 
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Mansinthe86

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Don't expect she will like the music that you enjoy.

My stepdaughter is 13 this year. And I know her since she was 7. She went from children's music (YouTube stuff ) to Japanese pop and anime music to Korean girl and boy bands that are popular at the moment.

She listens to all that through her iPad or Bluetooth earphones and doesn't care at all for quality audio equipment or bands that I suggest to her.

What's the most important thing is that the artists have social media and sell cute stickers and posters that she is able to collect.
 
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