I don't want to threadjack with way too much musical reminiscence, since Finnegans Wake, Inc. was founded in 1964, but I agree that specific songs and artists can transport me to specific time frames, memories, and moods. Mom used to play the Beatles Revolver and Magical Mystery Tour albums when she did Saturday cleaning. She also loved opera, and my step-father was a jazz afficianado (had a radio show for 30 years, got lots of promo stuff, some of it rock that wound up in my collection). The 70s was all about classic rock and disco, and then punk (the real stuff) came in ~1977, but like most kids it took me a while to catch up to what that was all about. New wave was sort of punk lite, but that was the gateway drug. The 1980s were largely a pile of suck, made all the more pungent by the fact that I worked in several record stores as a young slubberdegullion. The nascent rap movement was fun, plus I got into more experimental stuff and just generally became more eclectic. My playlist back then might include a morning thump of James Brown, a healthy rotation of Iggy and the Stooges (still in rotation!), Einstein on the Beach, Butthole Surfers, Dead Kennedys, Big Science, Ramones, Gun Club, Television, Miles Davis, Throbbing Gristle, Stockhausen... By the 90s, I was moving on in terms of who I was hanging with, and most of my friends were ~6 years younger. They were all into Nirvana and Pearl Jam and Soundgarden, and I was a bit jaded about them, but after a while I started to like that even if I saw the original source inspirations. I kept getting more eclectic, adding Frank Sinatra and Tony Bennett, and the second wave industrial stuff like Ministry, NiN, RevCo.
I have to admit that over the past 10-15 years my uptake of newer stuff has placed me directly in the codger category. Too much music now just sounds... weak, uninspired, fucking maudlin emo shit, or rap that has long since lost its appeal, or glossy pop that sounds like music to get enemas to. Some stuff still tickles me fancy though: Black Keys, some White Stripes, the Kills (Fuck the People!), and I've recently re-discovered how brilliant the Allman Brothers Band is, so that led to some of their offshoots like the Tedeski-Trucks Band.
Still trying to get all my CDs to MP3, and have a ton of vinyl that is taking a long time to transition over.
A way a lone a last a loved a long the ... riverrun, past Eve and Adam's ...