And now, the conclusion as to what brought me to the present.
After hearing ‘American Idiot’; and deciding to be a ‘Punk’, I started hanging with my one Punk friend. And researching the genre. Whether by spending a few hours on a library computer, asking my parents what they knew, or reading the books that had been written on the subject.
Green Day was no longer the only band I was listening to. I started listening to what little Punk my parents had, and I listened intently to the ‘Alternative’ radio stations. That led to alot of (home-made) mixtapes with everything from Billy Idol to Teenage Head.
Around the time I was 15, I was getting alot of crap from certain members of the church for the whole Punk thing. (Apparently; a knee-length kilt, a Green Day shirt, dyed red hair, Converse, and bad-mouthing the U.S was a no-no. I soon quit.)
That led to the Goth phase and that lasted for 3 years. (I still listen to the music, but I am totally devoted to the Punk scene at this point.)
I remember exactly how I fell back in love with Punk, and how I actually got into the scene here in Hamilton.
It was a June day, and I was visiting Crash Landing. As I leaving, the owner Suzanne Kirkwood, handed me a flyer. She told me there was going to be something called a ‘Punk Rock Matinee’ that weekend at a place called the Casbah.
I took the flyer, thanked her, and left. All could think was how weird this sounded. I knew what Punk Rock was, and I knew what a matinee was, but throw them together? What the hell was that?
I finally decided to go. I figured if it’s sh*t, I don’t have to go again.
But after I made the decision to go, I started to get nervous. I read books, and I listened to ‘Ongoing History Of New Music.’ I knew Punk could get down-right violent!
I honestly thought I was going to die. The pit would crush me, the lead singer would have glass shards like Iggy and stab me….
But curiousity prevailed. I am not lying when I tell you I felt a tug and knew I had to go.
I was one of the first people there, and it was quiet. I met someone who introduced himself as Randy, and we talked a little. He assured me that the place would fill up, and I seriously doubted him.
But I shouldn’t have. The Casbah was soon packed with Punks, and I was gladly proven wrong. Even if I didn’t know that many people, it felt great to see people that looked a little like me.
From the time the first band ,(out of 4 or 5 that would play in a row), went on and I moshed, I knew something.
Wherever this music was, I was supposed to be there too.
Oh, and everything was fine. No one died, and there was no danger.
Today, I am so glad I went to that first show. Punk and the people within it have given me so many things: Wonderful friends. Great music. A place to belong. Something to contribute to.
But mostly, Punk has given me a second home.