Growing up in the 90’s was tough. If you weren’t playing Super Mario, listening to Spice Girls or watching actual music videos on MTV – you were doing it wrong. And mix tapes…do you even have any idea how long a mix tape took to make?!?

The 90’s were also colorful and awesome. Especially, when it came to music.

I consider myself lucky to have been exposed to different music genres in high school. From Metallica and Nirvana, Beastie Boys and The Smashing Pumpkins, TLC and Dr. Dre, to Celine Dion and Lara Fabian.

My college years were a lot different. I discovered classical music. Bach’s Suite No.1 quickly became my morning go-to song. And, during the day, I would listen to Mozart and Chopin; in the evening, it was pretty much all about Schubert’s Serenade on repeat.

However, I don’t remember really being moved by a piece of music until I was in my early 20’s.

I remember the day, as if it was yesterday. I had just met a friend of my fiancé, a cello instructor. He had just seen his favorite band in concert and decided to come meet us for a drink. I had never heard of the band before. “Apocalyptica”, our friend explained. “They’re an orchestral rock band from Finland. They play a lot of covers, and they’re pretty amazing”.

I have to admit I was intrigued especially after he mentioned they do a lot of Metallica covers (Metallica being my favorite band of all time).

I immediately got tickets and went to see Apocalyptica live. At the end of Nothing Else Matters, I was in tears.

Concerts offer a different perspective and a new, greater appreciation for music we listen to digitally all day. No matter your age, location or favorite genre of music, there are always concerts and shows to be seen and new bands to be discovered. Whatever performance it may be, concert experiences can be totally unforgettable. What makes a concert memorable can be the artist’s stage performance and the feelings they bring out in you.

Our moods are also shaped by music. If I’m feeling down and listen to Billie Holiday’s Solitude, I’ll stay hidden under my covers for days. But if I listen to Jackie Wilson’s Higher and Higher instead, well, as the song suggests, it’s an upper.

For me, the only thing more fun than attending a concert is performing in one. The Summer of 2016 was my first gig at Reggie’s. Altered Stage gave me that gift. The gift of music. The gift of playing. I was the bass player. There was a lot of messing up and lots of staring at the floor. And let’s face it, I was a bit terrified too. But at the end of it, I felt like a rock star. And I’ve gotten better over the years because I practiced. Now, I love playing and embrace every chance to be on stage. It’s so much fun!

Dare to guess what I played? Nothing Else Matters, of course.

What song or artist has influenced your musical journey the most? Let us know in the comments!

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