As I was making pizza the other night, I was listening to A CLASSIC CASE: The London Symphony Orchestra Plays The Music Of Jethro Tull.
My son (7 years old) runs into the kitchen as Ian Anderson is going crazy on the flute and says, “Whoa! Abba, is that a new Piamenta album?”
“No, I wish. It’s actually a non-Jewish band and their music is being played by a symphony”, I answered.
“Too bad”, he said.
As I went back to pizza making I got to thinking. How cool is it that my son’s musical references are primarily based on what he listens to…Jewish music?
Just like eating Kosher food and keeping Shabbos are aspects of the only lifestyle that he’s experienced in his long seven years of existence. He has the right perspective.
As I, a BT, raise my kids as FFBs I realize it’s all about perspective.
The truth is that what we value and how we live our lives really forms and defines our perspective on things. This is true for each of us and, of course, for our families.
I have often tell myself and my kids that one has to look for mitzvah opportunities that Hashem sends our way. It’s my perspective.
I’m glad my son could show me his perspective.
Great post! it brins back a lot of memories – I was visiting a yeshiva with my son and soehow w ended up in a room playing guitar. I began playing an old Clapton song and one of the bochurim innocently said “Isn’t that a Gershon Veroba song?”
we phased out a lot of secular music when the kids were younger for a couple of reasons. Firstly, the lyrics are deeply problematic (have you really ever LISTENED to Steely Dan lyrics?) and unconsciously inculcate a non-Torah attitude in the kids. Secondly, I try to stay away from music that is beat and rhythm driven as opposed to melody driven music. The best description of what constitutes “Jewish” music is that just like we have an animal soul and a G-dly soul, music is similarly bifurcated. We need rhythm to assist indriving the melody but when pure rhythm for rhythm’s sake take’s over. . . so too with the animal soul – we need it to propel the G-dly soul through its journey in life – so we indulge it with just enough “gashmius” to enable it to take us where we need to go. But too many “lachaims” in this world and it quickly spins out of control….
I’m not a BT, but I have made certain that my children learn to appreciate Jethro Tull, so go figure.
Thanks for sharing your story, Neil.
I, too, have similar musical experiences with my children. It always causes me to pause and consider how different their perspective is with music. As a former professional touring musician, it is often difficult for me to deal with how my former career is not one which I share in too much detail with my children. The artists and venues, the whole experience, is something which I will always remember…yet I keep the memories mainly to myself. Better that they should enjoy their own music and perspective…
You mentioned raising your kids as FFB’s. As a BT, I know and my kids know that we’re different than most of their friends families (those who are FFB). It has not been an issue for the most part, but I feel that FFB wouldn’t be an accurate way to describe our kids, because their experience is different than those with FFB parents. They’re sort of a new, refreshing addition to the klal….and loving it!