My one true friend

This post is kind of a tribute to the thing that has always got me through everything. Been there through it all, right from when I was a kid. Held me through the tough times, embraced me through the lonely times. Without it, I’m not entirely sure I’d be here today. I definitely wouldn’t be the person I am now.

The thing I talk about; the powerful friend throughout my life….has simply been music.

When I was 6 or 7 I got a clock radio for Christmas. And that was the start of the most rewarding and honest relationship I’ve ever been in. I soon discovered the sleep button: 59 minutes of glorious music – plenty to keep me going until I fell asleep. Often I’d wake in the middle of the night, and switch it on for another 59 minutes. My local radio at that time was Radio Broadland, and they had a late night show called Love Around Midnight. It’s been almost 30 years and I remember it vividly.

I would lay there in the middle of the night learning what love was from such beautiful songs, like Dean Friedman’s Lydia. That song still gives me goosebumps all these years later. Another Broadland favourite was Guardian Angel, by Nino D’Angelo.

From then on, whenever I was in my bedroom I was accompanied by music. As I grew older I discovered that the world was full of music. So many different sounds. So many different beats. And they all took me to such different places.

I grew up opposite a pub, and used to get the old records out of their juke box. By now it was the late 80s, and the selection was very random: Tina Turner, Terry Jacks, Kenny Rogers & Dolly Parton and Madness, to name but a few. I loved them all.

For the next 20 years or do I dipped in and out of most genres. I can’t be defined by one type of music. I have been shaped by so many kinds: rock, reggae, folk, classical, pop, rap, r&b – the list is endless, and each one has played an important part in bringing me here today.

My iPod has such a range of music on it – I know I won’t have to cope with anything alone. I can play Lydia, and feel it’s gentle caress. Then I feel as safe as I did as a child, awake in the night.

So, if you see a kid on the bus and can hear the music escaping from their ear phones, don’t get mad. They just might be taking comfort from the only friend they have.

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