Vintage Love

    I  walk into my typing class at McNair High School, and the stereo is playing 99.3 KJOY–– “Light rock with less talk.” I take a seat at my assigned computer at the edge of the third row of tables. Not only is it my favorite class, but the chance to hear the radio and my favorite songs while the class is in session is a bonus. Some of the songs are those I’ve heard and memorized since I was in grade school, like “Surfin’ USA,” “Kokomo,” “Hey Jude,” “Jessie’s Girl,” and “Girls Just Wanna Have Fun.” While typing, it occurs to me that I don’t know the artists of the songs I have sung along to since I was a child. I decide to pick certain lines from those songs when they play during class again, and I memorize them until I get home. YouTube, the MTV of the 21st century, is a great way to search for the music videos to the songs I grew up with, so that I can finally match the song with the recording artist. 

    You see, I have been in love with classic rock music ever since the radio station that played in my typing class caused me to discover that I enjoyed tunes from the 1950s to the 1980s. That love for retro music would lead my interests to other 20th century musicians as well as their fashion. Of course I knew who Elvis Presley, the Beatles, the Beach Boys, and Rick Springfield were, and I knew some of their songs, but high school molded and shaped my love for them, connecting the familiar lyrics to familiar artists.

     A few of the albums I have collected and enjoyed over the years.
    A few of the albums I have collected and enjoyed over the years.

    To be frank, my pre-teen and teenaged self had no idea that I was listening to bands and singers from previous generations. I didn’t know that “Hey Jude” and Rick Springfield were out of style since most of the radio stations I heard, and continue to hear, are dedicated to playing classic rock.

    My love for rock ‘n’ roll truly sparked with Elvis Presley when I was fourteen. My taste in music would not have flourished the way it had if it weren’t for the 2002 Disney film Lilo and Stitch, which featured a variety of catchy Presley songs from “Heartbreak Hotel” and “Hound Dog” to “Burning Love.”

    The moniker “Vintage” does reflect my personal music style, but it really describes so much more about me. My music tastes have evolved (or gone retrospect, some would say) to reflect my comical, my poetic, and my ‘yes, I dance, but nobody knows’ personality. Some of my favorite funny songs include “Gonna Buy Me a Dog” and “Your Auntie Grizelda” by the Monkees as well as “Splish Splash” by Bobby Darin. Poetic songs and musicians (like “Sunshine Superman” by Donovan, “Vincent” and “American Pie” by Don McLean, and “Early Mornin’ Rain” by Peter, Paul, and Mary) put me in a creative writing mood. “Rock Around the Clock” by Bill Haley and His Comets, “Rockin’ Robin” by Bobby Day, “Take on Me” by A-Ha, and anything by Cyndi Lauper make me want to stand up and dance.

    Another off-shoot of my love of “old” music is an adoration for vintage style clothing that also developed during my years in high school. Junior year history taught me about the Kennedy Presidency, and I was inspired by Mrs. Kennedy’s elegant and classy fashion sense that fascinated many women in the 1960s. Today, I own a few dresses similar to Mrs. Kennedy’s, but I add my favorite items to make the style more “me.” To let my personality shine through my Jackie-inspired clothing, I add bracelets with pink roses (my favorite) and wear a denim jacket to make the outfit reflect my comfortable and girly style. Other times, I wear the iconic “Jackie O” glasses with any outfit that I’m wearing, like a pair of jeans paired with a blouse and tennis shoes.

    My love for vintage style shows up not only in my music preferences and wardrobe, but also in my room, which really serves as a platform to express all aspects of my personality. For instance, if you walk into my room, you are welcomed by posters and artwork of the ever glamorous Hollywood, as well as some of America’s classic bands and musicians. The white bookcase in the corner is a multi-colored canvas that showcases books about rock ‘n’ roll history, biographies of some of Hollywood’s actors and starlets, and historical figures.

    As you can see, the music and fashion from the 20th century inspires me and is reflected in my personality and personal style. Few things are as fun as developing your personal style, especially if your interests are aesthetically pleasing and can be easily incorporated into your style in a visual way.

    Musical tastes are similar, especially if they are a little aged like mine. The way I see it, the classic songs from previous generations of teenagers remain classic no matter what generation listens and dances along to them. That music wasn’t just for people in the past to enjoy, but rather it exists still for everyone who has the ability to listen to it. Even years later,  the lyrics and rhythms that caused millions to cry, laugh and dance, are still filled with grooviness that everyone can relate to.

     

    To see some more of my vintage style and for similar style inspiration, pay a visit to my polyvore account!

     

    Leticia Lopez
    Letty Lopez earned a bachelors degree in journalism from CSU Sacramento in 2015. She enjoys researching all-things retro and sharing her findings with readers. Writing isn't new to her, but working with her idol Jennifer Niven is a first time experience! Follow her on twitter @leticialopez60s.

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