When did you know that music was your passion?

Was there a specific moment in your life when you realized that music was your passion? Was there a defining, earth shattering moment while listening to a certain piece of music that stopped you dead in your tracks? For me it was when I was 12 years old. I snuck downstairs into my syster's room while she was out. I used to watch her play records so I new how to turn on the "forbiden" stereo. I took a record from its sleave, put it on the 'table, and dropped the needle. Jimmy Page's opening riff of "Whole Lotta Love" shot through me like a bullet, and I was paralized. At that moment, music sunk its hooks into me and hasn't let go since. What about you?.......
I'll go first. I was 7 or 8 when I realized I was the only one I knew who could and would do NOTHING ELSE but listen to music. It wasn't background noise for me - it was everything while I was listening.

Shortly thereafter I had some records to spin on the parent's console - Wings, Queen, and Air Supply were some of the first. :)
I was 10 when I discovered what "FM" meant on my parents'(who never listened to music) DuMont AM/FM/TV(B&W). That would have been 1958. Shortly after, Brubeck came out with 'Take Five' and I was hooked on Jazz. Four years later: I started playing guitar, DJing, listening to music much more seriously, and people started noticing I could wring the best sound possible out of whatever electronics were present. They never let me stop, so the live music(1st love) and running/repairing/modding Home and Pro audio gear has been central in my life since! Thanks for the memories. I think I'll go spin 'Time Out' now!
Ed Sullivan Show. Feb of 1964
I think I was around 6 when I really found myself (and was teased by others) always in a rocking chair near the radio and it was probably Wings and Fleetwood Mac aswell as other "pop" radio that I got hooked on. Later my step dad by example taught me how to really just sit and listen (imagine that!) and it never stopped, add that to a geekish love of electronics and I was screwed forever!
When I was around 6 or 7 years old I had this fascination with the inner workings of older electronics. I'm 51, to put this in perspective. I would dis-assemble old tube radios and such to see what they were made of. I thought those big old caps where the greatest things. I'd take them apart, and collect the resistors and caps, and I'm drifting.... This lead me to actually listening to the equipment, and trying to figure out how they all work, which eventually lead to listening how the sound was better in some, and worse in others, and why, etc. I found I liked to listen to good sounding gear, which started me down this road. I could never get enough of just listening to the radio.
A friend of mine lived across the street from the park we used to play softball at. He would put his JBL L-100's up in the windows and crank it while we played ball. We all grew up with music playing continuously. Wow, great memories...
Three things: 1. Summer vacations spent at my uncle's house in Ann Arbor MI, discovering his Beatles albums and he letting me play them on his "stereo" ! with some big 10" woofers and BASS! (which we had nothing of the sort at our house. OH what fun.
2. Seeing the movie "Yellow Submarine" on TV around 1973 when I was 12 years old, BLEW MY MIND. Psychadelic Peter Max type animation and Beatles music. I was hooked; went out and bought my first beatles album, Revolver.
3. Around 1975 or so picking up a Radio Shack catalog and musing over the raw driver section wondering what a 15" woofer would sound like... about the same time picking up a JBL catalog and "wow"-ing over the L200 and L300 and raw driver section... thus begining my facination with speakers.
4. okay okay I said 3, but... after the Beatles quickly moved on to Chicago, Elton John, CSN, Steely Dan then more progressive's like Yes, King Crimson, ELP, Camel, Jethro Tull, Deep Purple, Rush, Santana.. then around 1977 discovered jazz fusion with the likes of RTF, Weather Report, Jean Luc Ponty, etc... full blown Jazz nut by 1980 or 81... began attending symphony and buying classical throughout the 80's. These days it's Coltrane, Miles, Duke, Louis, Stan Getz, you get the idea.
When I was in the womb, my mother was an amateur opera singer.
When they slapped my rear end I didn't cry, but started to wail 'Carmen'. Apparently.
When I got a 45 rpm copy of Itsy Bitsy Teeny Weeny Yellow Polka Dot Bikini for my fifth birtday in 1962.
I had a similar story to yours. I was like 12 and used to spend summers at my grandma's place. One day a buddy of my cousin came and brought along some 'strange music'. Being younger than them I didn't dare going into the living room to hang out with them so I was in the next room but I could listen to the music...it was strange but fascinating. This guy kept singing about a musical box. After their listening session was over and they had left, I ran to the living room to check out the LPs. First one I picked up had a picture of a man with a flower around his head. It turned out to be an earlier Genesis album. I started playing some of it on the 'forbidden' stereo and I was hooked for life. Grandma gave me money the following Xmas to buy me some records: I remember buying Marillion's Real to Reel. Since then I started spending endless afternoons in record stores browsing the most eclectic sections (these records had the best covers period!) I am talking about Marillion, Gentle giant, jethro tull, genesis, king crimson, yes.....
oh boy....those were good days.
I was in the third grade and my cousing had bought a
sony walkman. I loved the sound. Then in the 4th grade,
I won my school spelling bee and won a boombox. I used
to love resting the box on my chest while I was in bed, with my head between the two speakers.
Since then, I have grown to know that this was the infamous
sweet spot.
1972, we moved out of Philly to a near by suburb that had a very strong music program. It was my first day of second grade at our new school when I walked into the "bandroom" by accident. I now believe that it was not a mistake but a subliminal action. As I entered the large room with a small theater like presence I heard the opening drum crashes of "Fanfare for the Common Man". Wide eyed and shocked that there were no musicians in the room I walked in further to see where they all were........No one in sight except for a woman sitting at her desk doing paper work. Then it happened! The first notes of the trumpet poured into the room with a sound that stirred my little soul. I knew I was in the wrong room but was frozen in my tracks. The teacher finally noticed me after about 20 seconds and motioned me to her desk. As I walked to her desk I could not take my eyes off those big wooden boxes in the front of the room. She asked me what classroom I was looking for and she would point me in the right direction. Eyes still fixed on those boxes which were now playing the full scale melody of rich brass works I held my schedule out in her direction. She was the most understanding teacher I have ever had, never spoke a word as I stood there with arm extended, paper in hand staring at the speakers in awe. She waited until the Fanfare was over then tried to regain my attention which was still fixed on those big speakers.......She was so cool that she walked me to my new homeroom and explained to my teacher that the new student had got himself lost on his first day. She then told my homeroom teacher that she wanted me brought back to the bandroom after class was over.

After class I went back to the bandroom and was introduced to Mrs. Holly, the elementary schools music director. She asked me if I liked the piece of music I heard that morning? "Yes". Had I ever heard it before? "No". With those two short answers she must have been inside my head because she wasted no time going to a locker and pulling out a trumpet, handed it to me, and walked to the turntable. Pointed to the chair that was sitting where the conductor would stand, but facing the front of the room instead of the musicians. There "they" were again! Those two enormous wooden wonders that captured my attention that morning. With a thunderous crash Fanfare for the Common Man exploded before my eyes and ears again, and when the trumpet intro began I knew immediately that the piece of bent up metal with ivory buttons I was holding in my hands was the very same instrument that I was hearing. I became a trumpet player the next day and have been ever since that day. As for the speakers, a Giant pair of Altec Lansing horns! I was hooked from that day on.......an audiophile in the making. All thanks to an elementary school music teacher with an Audiophile ear. I realized much later how awesome she was to have a nice chair sitting in the sweet spot for me to experience quality sound for the very first time............Thank You Mrs. Holly and God Bless You!
It happened just last week when my girlfriend told me that if I'd play a particular song on a particular CD, that she'd suck my....... OH, you are probably asking for the F-I-R-S-T time, instead of the most RECENT one!
Continued Happy Listening!

One of the long established radio stations (WNIA) changed formats from country to "contemporary" (for lack of a better term). I heard "Rave On" by Buddy Holly for the first time.

Slam dunk.
In the backseat of my girlfriend's 1951 Pontiac. The only way I could complete the nasty was with the radio playing WLS out of Chicago at full volume as she yodeled in my ear.
I was 6 years old in 1966 when my older sister played 96 Tears by Question Mark and the Mysterians on her record player, I was hooked.

A year or so later, she won a copy of Cream's Disraeli Gears as a door prize at a dance. She played it once on her record player, she hated it, I loved it. She gave it to me. I bugged my parents for a record player of my own until I got one for my 8th birthday.

My story is rather similar to Rodman99999's:

When I was 8 or 9 I had been begging my parents for an FM radio for my room (I only had AM) and my father found me a very nice Arvin AM/FM table radio, two way mono speaker, push button tuning, cool! I found it amusing but not compelling until THIS came along:


I'd never heard anything like it. Tull? Kraftwerk? Reverberi? Deodato? I never turned it off. I joined the grade school band, and I've been making and listening to music ever since. The first dollars I earned from my first job at 13 went toward a record player, one of those compact jobs with the fold down turntable. I still own the first album I bought - Aqualung. It's pretty trashed now.


The summer of 1966 when I fell in love. Donovan's "Sunshine Superman" and The Association's "Cherish" along with several others from that year still has an magical effect.
The summer of 57 or 58.My older cousin would come over to play ball and after lunchtime,just had to listen to the radio for his favorite song.I was forced to sit there and listen until it came on,then we could go out and play more ball.Sometime that summer,I started waiting for a song also.....after that,splendor in the grass joined the hit parade.......hey Bobgates...that was the best summer of my life[1966],glad you were there too....
Wow! I must have been really blitzed. I had a few Martinis before writing this post, so please forgive the (many) grammatical errors. I can't help but laugh while writing this.....