Turn down the music? YouaEUR( tm) d better ask my punk parents
4 months, 4 days ago
Having hardcore punk musicians for parents has been a noisy pleasure for Holly MacHenry and an education
Its Tuesday evening. I am watching the posters in my bedroom, wondering if this time they will manage to cling to the vibrating walls. One peels free of its Blu-Tack shackles and falls to the floor. Again. Tuesday is my parents band-practice night and as my bedroom is positioned directly above the living room( their practice space ), I am reminded of the power of music on a weekly basis. Every Tuesday, I am acutely is conscious that my room has two chimneys operating up through it, which channel musical vibrations upward like a giant church organ.
My parents post-punk band is called Mwstard, and they like to practice at full volume. I will often hear Dad calling to Mum, trying to attain his voice heard above the noise of bass and snare drums, the high hat and the cowbell solos. But while shes physically still in the living room, her mind is far away. In most families, it is the parents hollering up the stairs telling the teenagers to turn their music down, but in our household the music is my mothers. It is non-optional and always very, very loud.
Some might say hardcore punk( and even the slightly more tuneful post-punk) is unsuitable for children, but I disagree. Both my mothers have been in punk bands since the 80 s; Ive grown up surrounded by punks and their political music. It has shaped my core values and notions, and Im grateful for its positive influence. While a lot of kids were becoming slowly immune to violence from watching too many cartoons, I was being kept fully alert by defiant lyrics.
This education began before I was born. My parents satisfied through the punk scene and began to get to know each other when Dad asked Mum to be the drummer in the band he was starting. Twenty-five years on, its own history as a couple and my history, too is interwoven with the bands they were in. Most of the time, they have played in separate bands while mutually supporting one another.
When Mum was pregnant with me, Dad drove her, five other feisty punk women and a cello around Europe on a Witchknot tour( Witchknot was one of her earlier punk bands ).