Turned Off

Graphic showing the logo for the Flashback Track Friday prompt.

This is my response to this week’s Flashback Track Friday prompt, where we were asked to write about songs we played from our parents’ collection.

I mentioned before that our house wasn’t a big music house. Mum seemed not to have owned any music (she’d have said that was poverty but I don’t think she was a music lover, period) where dad had a promising music collection which ended pretty abruptly in the mid-Sixties when he and mum got engaged, and they started saving up furiously to get married.

His collection did include very early (mono!) Beatles tracks, which I sometimes borrowed, so I guess I could have presented one of those, and left it at that.

But I deviated from the question and thought about what I didn’t play, instead. Thinking along these lines uncovered a whole new seam of memories.

Yes, some of the records in my dad’s collection were pop. But he also owned LPs of old marches, composed to commemorate World War II events.

Often, these marches were composed for movies like The Dambusters (1955), Reach for the Sky (1956), Battle of Britain (one of the latest at 1969) etc.

For probably twenty years post-WW2, there was a part of the movie industry in the UK dedicated to idolising Britain’s role in the Second World War. And dad grew up right in the middle of that. So it’s not really surprising that he too idolised Britain’s role in the war. Not to mention his own dad – my grandad – fought firsthand. I remember the subconscious attempts to indoctrinate me, too, but I was fortunate to grow up with movies like Platoon and Hamburger Hill, very much anti-war and which probably portrayed it far more accurately.

Note, I’ve been careful to talk so far about “Britain’s role”. Because these movies not only glorified war itself, but emphasised the “Britain as good, Germany as bad” attitude. We’d call them plain xenophobic today.

In fairness, it’s not just Britain. Americans like John Wayne reminded us how nasty not just the Germans, but the Japanese, were. Hollywood movies like Sands of Iwo Jima or The Longest Day (they must have written a march for that one, too) to celebrate America’s role in the war.

Anyway I’m gonna answer this challenge with my own challenge. Write about something in your parents’ music collection which was bloody awful!

And lastly, I dug out that march.


  1. My mother and father don’t own any music. I mean they don’t have any cassettes or albums from their times. It’s understandable because both of them grew up in fairly rural environments.

    However, I remember when I was little my father used to play religious music (bhajans it’s called here) in the morning which he got in his phone.

    Liked by 1 person

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