Many of us can link a certain album to pivotal moments in our lives. Whether it’s the first record you bought with your own money, the chord you first learnt to play on guitar, the song that soundtracked your first kiss, the album that got you those awkward and painful pubescent years or the one that set off light bulbs in your brain and inspired you to take a big leap of faith into the unknown – music is often the catalyst for change in our lives and can even help shape who we become.
In this Love Letter To A Record series, Music Feeds asks artists to reflect on their relationship with music and share with us stories about the effect music has had on their lives.
Nicholas Hamilton – Simple Plan, Still Not Getting Any…(2004)
Dear Simple Plan,
Here I go, professing my love for the band whose song is the first song I can remember listening to on a device that I owned. As you may know, 2000’s Canadian pop-rock band Simple Plan, I consider myself pretty young. I’m 21 but a child, in both physical and, especially, mental age. Hell, I even named my first EP just that, Pretty Young (out August 13). So when Music Feeds asked me to talk about a record that has affected me and my young life in some way, this song stood out to me as a track I see as pivotal to forming my love of music as a child. That song, Simple Plan, is your 2004 angsty-teen anthem:
‘Welcome To My Life’
When I was about 7 or 8, my parents got my brother and I an MP3 player each. It could house maybe 50 songs, probably less, but I loved it. That was back when you still had to download songs from a computer onto your device, so the majority of songs on there were ones my brother or parents had already bought off of iTunes. So, in turn, my first music library was filled with a pretty eclectic group of tracks, including Kenny Rogers, Guns N’ Roses and The Eagles. The one specific song that stands out, though, is Simple Plan’s ‘Welcome To My Life’, from your 2004 album, Still Not Getting Any. I can’t recall the number of road trips I was in the backseat for where I would listen to that song and look out the window wistfully as if I had anything to worry about, but it was a lot.
I went on to get my first iPod, a 5th Generation Classic, which could house thousands of songs but, again, only if you were willing to pay for them. I was given the opportunity to expand my library with full albums from bands like The Madden Brothers, Green Day and more Simple Plan, with your more poppy tunes, ‘Jetlag’ and ‘Summer Paradise’, becoming regulars that I blasted into my eardrums, shredding any remaining hope of my hearing sticking around for my 30th birthday. ‘Summer Paradise’ also acted as my introduction to Sean Paul, for which I’m forever grateful.
Since my early teens, I’ve listened to countless albums, both good and bad. But the feeling I got from those first devices, and the first Simple Plan songs that blared through the earphones, is yet to be matched, and I doubt it ever will. So thank you.
Thank you Simple Plan.
Nicholas Hamilton’s new EP Pretty Young is out today, listen here.