For many music lovers, music is just a way of life, something that has always been there, but what sparks a love for music?
My earliest music memories are of my mother blaring the radio Saturday mornings while she, along with my brother and me, did our chores around the house. Even to this day, hearing classic R&B songs from the likes of Mary J. Blige, SWV, and TLC takes me right back to my childhood, procrastinating on cleaning the bathroom.
Then there were the times when I would sneak into my brother’s room while he wasn’t home and push all of the buttons on his huge boombox. I was always so impressed by its size and its ability to wow any crowd. During those days, my brother often took his boombox with him to school, for nothing else but as a conversation piece as he held court.
Then there are the memories of spending lazy afternoons at our local record and audio store. Set up in a cave-like atmosphere, you had to walk down long and dark corridors from the entrance, passing little nooks and crannies where people could buy recording gear or stereo systems. You’d have to walk – what felt like forever (at least to my small, child legs) – just to get to the part of the store that actually sold cassettes and CDs. We’d spend hours there, pouring through all of the albums and singles, pouring over song lists, and comparing album covers. It was always a special moment when we found a CD to buy. I distinctly remember meticulously going over Christina Aguilera and Britney Spears’ first albums in the record store before deciding on Christina, a decision that would mark my fandom allegiance.
Even though music plays a vivid role in those early childhood memories, I wasn’t in love with music as a child. It was always something that was just there. It wasn’t until I got a bit older that a love and passion for music began to develop out of an unlikely obsession. Our family absolutely loved(!) The Simpsons. We watched the show so frequently in our house growing up that it was both part reflection of our lives and part religion. My older brother was the Bart of the family, while I was clearly the Lisa. And as a “Lisa” should, I longed to play the saxophone just like her. And that is precisely what I did. Once I had a chance to join our middle school band, my dad surprised me with a saxophone of my very own one Christmas.
It was in learning to read, play, and create music that made me fall in love with music. The art and beauty of it all. The feeling of playing something that expresses your soul when words won’t do the trick. The muscle memory of learning to play a song, an instrument, leaving it for years, and still being able to pick up where you left off as if no time had ever passed.
I fell deep in lust with music. From devouring album after album of any music I could get my hands on (or illegally download – sorry!), to perfecting my best jazz vibrato on the saxophone and writing my own so-called masterpieces. I was completely head-over-heels in love with music, and it was the core fabric of my being.
Until it wasn’t.
My love affair with music and the saxophone lasted all throughout middle school and high school before things cooled off. I went off to college to pursue a degree outside of music and with all the things that go on in college…well, I didn’t have a lot of time to play the saxophone or write music. As I began my professional career, that part of my life seemingly dimmed. I was a musical person who continued to consume a massive amount of music – or at least as much as my iPod could fit – but I didn’t see myself as that music-obsessed girl I was in my youth.
At least not until I moved to New York City. There are so many inspiring things about living in a city like New York. The best thing, in my opinion, is the seemingly unlimited access to music. On any given day of the week, big-named artists are playing venues like The Garden or Barclays. Still, many more, smaller and up and coming acts are playing more intimate locations.
Going to concerts in NYC and meeting other people who loved music re-sparked that love and passion I felt for music all those years ago. It was going to those intimate shows that enabled me to find myself. To realize that music means so much more to me than entertainment. It is a way of life; it is in the fabric of my being, and music feeds my soul.
My love of music and the discovery or re-discovery of myself sparked me to create TAMBER. Not for the people who are fine just listening to whatever is on the radio, but for the people who need music as much as they need air and water. You know them, they’re the people that never forget their air pods or their Beats. The people who get antsy when they haven’t listened to any music in a few hours. These are the people who the TAMBER community was created for. A place where we connect with one another and bond over our shared love and need for music. These are the people we hope to inspire to change the world for the better by sharing our pure passion for music.