Is it bad parenting to allow your 5-year-old daughter to go to her first rock concert? If so, I’m guilty.
Tonight, my daughter may be the youngest fan at The Killers’ show at Jones Beach on Long Island. She will be supervised, of course, by my Killers-loving wife, but she will be right there in the eighth row wearing her pink Killers T-shirt amid the screaming teenage girls and fist-pumping dudes.
So how does a girl who just managed to read her first book — Angelina Ballerina — end up being awake way past her bedtime two days before kindergarten starts at a rock show?
Careful planning, that’s how.
It all started earlier this year when we noticed her singing along to The Killers in the car. Her 9-year-old sister enjoys the band fine enough, but with nowhere near the enthusiasm of her younger sister.
“Could you turn it up a little bit,” she’d say.
As a music snob parent, I couldn’t be happier. The evil influence of the Jonas Brothers looms large over the pre-teen music world. We’ve caught our older daughter discussing the Jonas Brothers’ hair styles, something that made my heart cry in anguish. I’ve lost her, but I can still save the other one.
So my wife and I have encouraged her love of grown-up rock. After precise cultivation and a little manipulation, her favorite bands are the Killers, Ting-Tings and Vampire Weekend. That's just the start. "Honey, do you like this song? It's by the Ramones."
Too bad, Jonas Brothers, you won’t get this one with your stupid, manufactured corporate pop-punk.
My first rock concert was KISS in January 1977. I was 13. So my message to my 5-year-old daughter as she embarks on a lifelong love of loud guitars is this: May you rock ‘n roll all night and party every day! (as long as you keep those grades up).