The kids and I are driving to a restaurant for dinner. I’m playing “The 100 Best One-Hit Wonder Songs” playlist on Spotify.
It’s a favorite amongst the family, at least until we get to the end of the playlist.
My kids may only eat about three foods, pile books everywhere, and leave their damn shoes all over the house, but when it comes to music, they are fantastic:
Open-minded music lovers who love a variety of genres and do not insist upon listening only to new music.
Some of their favorite songs are decades old.
We’re pulling into the restaurant’s parking lot when “Major Tom,” a Peter Shilling one-hit-wonder from 1983 that references David Bowie’s character Major Tom from his 1969 song “Space Oddity” begins playing.
Bowie’s “Space Oddity” was originally considered a novelty song when first released and never charted well in the United States, but today it’s considered one of Bowie’s finest recordings and is one of his most popular songs.
Shilling’s “Major Tom” actually did much better when it was released, reaching #14 on the Billboard Hot 100 and topping the charts in several Europe countries and Canada.
Unlike Bowie, it’s Peter Shilling’s only hit. It’s also a song most people probably don’t remember, but Clara and Charlie immediately and simultaneously loved the song.
“What’s this?” Charlie asked.
“Yeah,” Clara said. “Who sings this?”
Their excitement was palpable.
Mine, too. Few things in this world bring me more joy than watching my children fall in love with something because of their open-minded willingness to try new things, regardless of their age, origin, or genre.
The depth and breadth of their cultural knowledge and appreciation is something I didn’t have a chance to enjoy as a child.
Lucky them. And lucky me for being able to help make it happen and watch it blossom.