One of the more amusing things is the way that these kids change. Often they'll first appear as babes in arms, when proud Mums and Dad's bring them down to show us. Most people who are into music want their kids to get the bug. We next see them around six or seven, when they are getting their first guitar or drumkit. We are in the lucky position that our customers trust us. It also makes the kids feel a bit special and a bit rock and roll to visit the studios.
They then disappear again until they are twelve or thirteen and come down with their first band. Proud mums and Dads lurk around, happily savouring the cacophony and visualising the day when the song reaches No 1 and the y get bought the retirement villa in Bermuda on the proceeds.
All of these visits are happy joyous, smiling encounters.
What happens next is that hormones kick in. All of a sudden the kids won't be seen dead in a room with their parents. That doesn't mean that the free taxi service is dispensed with, it's just that the parents have to park around the corner. Strange things also happen to the appearance of the kids. These beautiful bouncing babies have morphed into straggly unwashed teenagers, lank hair, ill fitting clothes and spots. Perhaps the most interesting thing is what happens to their linguistic skills. One week they will come in and say "Hello, what studio are we in today". The next week they will point to the diary and say "Is I?" or something else which only years of training can decipher. Semi Patois accents are adopted (Is this compulsory for Mill Hill County High School?). The free taxi service (AKA parents) at this point appreciate our services more than ever. We actually get the little darlings out of the house for a couple of hours. Occasionally we will have the odd comic moment. On one occasion, a teenage man mountain in torn jeans, leather jacket, with hair that hadn't made contact with a shower for at least six months lurched in. Without uttering a word he pointed at the Pork Scratchings hanging on the wall and slammed down 60p. Many an old lady would have run for cover at the mere sight of this young man. As he turned around clutching his tasty snack, all of a sudden mummy entered. He had forgotten his guitar lead and she'd come to bring it. She saw the bag of pork scratchings and exclaimed "Joshua, what would the Rabbi say if he saw you with those?". All of a sudden the man hulk was transformed back into the naughty little boy aged five, running around giggling as he bashed cymbals on the cymbal display.
I was reminded of this yeserday. The incident above happened in 1999. Yesterday Joshua turned up in his Mercedes, to give his son (mini Josh) aged five or six a drum lesson. The leather jacket is gone and the hair is washed and neatly cut. He was explaining to mini Josh how he'd been coming down since he was his age and how fantastic our new studios are. I wonder what he'll say when he catches mini Josh buying a crafty bag of pork scratchings in about ten years?
I asked big Joshua if he was still playing with anyone. He had been in a great band at university and music had been a massive part of his life. "With the kids and work, I just don't get time. The kit has been in the garage since we moved. It is just great to be down here with Josh".
Sometimes the circle of life is a wonderous thing. I had the same conversation with his Dad (Old Joshua) when Josh was about five.
I don't usually plug my business in this blog too much, but if you fancy a drum lesson, buy a drumkit or a jam with your band then check us out - http://www.millhillmusiccomplex.co.uk/ - sadly though, we no longer sell pork scratchings