There are self-referential songs about how music can take you back to a certain time in your life, a memory, an era. I’m not trying to go back in time, but the older I get, the more I realize that a ton of music has shaped who I am, or at the least, what I choose to listen to these days. It’s like, why do I cry when I listen to George Strait in my office? Oh, right, because I started loving George Strait when I was 18, a senior in high school, and George reminds me of long drives (back and forth to school) and figuring out feelings and warm days with family.
I made these grossly incomplete graphics to try and map when I listened to certain artists, along with parentheses that includes who got me in to that artist, or why I listened to them at that time. My childhood is mostly genres because I wasn’t in charge of who I listened to at that time. My teenage years are an explosion of music because that’s when I discovered The Internet. And so on.
You don’t have to get anything out of this. Like Walter White, I did this for me because I liked it and was good at it. But maybe you’ll want to map out your life through music, too. And you won’t be able to fit everyone who influenced you on this map, but you’ll do the best you can with what you have. I didn’t try to include every single artist I’ve ever listened to- these are the ones who have stuck, who really stand out when I think about defining times of my life.