• Blue Jeans and Black T-Shirts: My Introduction To Metal

    18 Feb 2013, 20:42

    In 1983 I was introduced to heavy metal by my uncle, Steve and from then on I was never the same. I was quite a bit younger than he but he always insisted on me tagging along with him in his 68 Camaro blaring the likes of Dio and Judas Priest and Ozzy Osbourne.

    In 1985, he brought me to my first metal concert, Iron Maiden and W.A.S.P. It was a great experience. I loved this music, although I was the only one in my family to embrace the metal lifestyle. I think it was at that point on that my wardrobe consisted of mostly blue jeans and black t-shirts.

    I immersed myself into the scene. It was exploding everywhere. These were great times for heavy metal and I was a sponge absorbing it all. Bands like Def Leppard and Quiet Riot were ruling the airwaves and MTV wasnt afraid to play this style of music yet. New heavier bands began creeping out of the underground and I spent all of my allowance checking out, then lesser known bands like Metallica, Slayer, Fates Warning and Lizzy Borden through mail order advertisments in metal fan magazines. Two albums made a seroius impression on me at the time. Those were Master of Puppets and Awaken the Guardian.

    Although there were many styles within the metal scene, it was different than it is now. The term "Heavy Metal" covered the entire spectrum from the
    80's hard rock and the bands that dominated rock radio at the time to the more extreme bands of the time, like Celtic Frost, and Venom. Personally I enjoyed and continue to enjoy all of it. It was a Brotherhood then. Long hair, black concert/band tshirt, and blue jeans were our badges, the same as now. Except for the longhair I still sport the comfy ol blue jeans and tshirts. I can be seen on occasion getting puzzled looks from Hot Topic employees as I purchase my various tees featurings bands like Nightwish and Lacuna Coil. And I attend what few live shows come my way.

    These days people are hung up on labels. IMO labels are meant to divide. For the old school headbangers dont be hating on the newer kids. The Metal Torch is always passed on and we must respect that. Too many metal websites exclude so many great modern bands. Why? Over the supposed definition of "is it metal?" and bickering over a label. Surely there are others like me who love whats great in ALL the genres, and subgenres that and of the rock and metal universe? I enjoy it all from Black Sabbath to Slipknot, old to nu-metal, hard rock to hardcore, gothic and symphonic, thrash and groove, and all points in between.

    I am Metal for Life

    And I'll never abandon my blue jeans and black t-shirts.

    What was your introduction to metal and how has it shaped you?