i was the quiet kid in a family of great extroverted conversationalists. the community was conservative and somehow i wasn't. there was affluence there, and we weren't a part of it. you'd get snubbed if you didn't fit the criteria, but i didn't care because my world was tramping through the woods and ravines, mostly alone.
music changed my life and altered my course when i was 4 or 5 ...elvis on... ed sullivan, buddy holly on jack parr or steve allen. i got my plastic mickey mouse hand crank guitar (it played "pop goes the weasel") and did an elvis impersonation...singing "hound dog" for my parents & grand parents. they howled with delight, and i kinda liked that.
both mom and dad worked, so we needed baby sitters after school. ours came from a "home for wayward girls", young ladies who had been in some kind of trouble or another, and made wards of the state.
they were poodleskirted, saddle shoed, bobby soxers and had hoodlum boyfriends. back then American Bandstand was on everyday, and featured the rock-n-roll artists of the era in spotlighted performances. so...i would come home from grade school and the babysitters had it on, thus exposing me to the likes of Jerry Lee Lewis, Buddy Holly, Eddie Cochran, Carl Perkins, Little Richard, Gene Vincent, etc. et. al; at an age when my classmates were watching Ding Dong School. the babysitters boyfriends would come over and they'd grab some of Mom's smokes, and steal a bit of Dad's liqour and go disappear off into the woods out back. so there i was, sitting in front of the box watching bandstand and being moved by all of this great music. then Chuck Berry came on one day, and he was smiling and doing the" duck walk" from one side of the screen to the other. that's when it hit me; "THAT is what i wanna do!" and any ideas of being a policeman, steam shovel operator, fireman, or even President of the USA went out the window.