Bass Guitars, The Generation Gap and Living on the Wild Side–an interview with musician Josh Hughes.


josh hughes 1

I’ve always had misgivings about senior complexes.

  • Too quiet.
  • Too clean.

Too, well, senior.

Where are the

  1. bikes tossed on the grass on a hot summer’s afternoon?
  2. rock music blaring out of a basement window?
  3. plastic wading pools making round dead spots in the grass?

Give me an ordinary neighborhood.


Each generation should take the opportunity to learn from the other.

Not just how to

  • tie shoes
  • or pop one’s dentures in and out.

But, how to see life from a different perspective.

So, I decided to get to know Josh Hughes, a young man who is helping me this summer with the College dorm conferences.

“How old are you?” I asked.

“Twenty one,” he replied as if he had invented the number combination all by himself. Of course, it’s not like he’s never been twelve before. But, I didn’t point that out. I was getting to know him, after all.

For the next few minutes we talked about his family.

  • No biological siblings.
  • A step-dad who adopted him when Josh was ten. 

Josh had always been close to his mom. As a teenager, he grew close to the only dad he had ever known.

And, then, he fell in love with the bass guitar. All because of his older step- brother.

“I looked up to him,” Josh said and flicked his shoulder length hair out of his face, “When I saw him play, I had a desire to do that, too.”

Eventually, he learned enough bass to play with his church worship band.

“Music was therapy in some ways for me,” Josh told me, “I was always able to come back to music no matter what state my life was in.”

This summer Josh is working on composing songs with his roommate Kevin. The genre is hard rock. They plan to have five compositions done by the fall.

“Where do you see yourself in five years?” I had to ask.

“I would dearly love to have a band going with friends,” he said, “touring making a living playing music, writing music.”

He then talked about how music teachers in Pacific Life Bible College (where he attends) have great connections in the music community. The Bible college courses are also a great help.

“In the music scene there is not a lot of Jesus around, “he said, “I want a firm foundation.”

I replied to each answer with “good, great, right one and that’s interesting” but inside my head one question just kept screaming louder and louder.

Finally, I blurted it out.

“What about financial stability?”

Something strange happened. One generation began to teach another. Guess who was the student.


“One thing Rick Colhoun (a teacher and musician) told us,” Josh replied quickly, “is that if you have any other passion or interest in the world do that. Cause music is hard work…its hard to make money at it.”

Josh explained that some teachers in the college pursued their music while working other jobs. Others pursued music in their jobs.

“It’s really about …the passion in your heart to make music. It’s worth putting everything on the line for,” he added.

And, then he grinned and reminded me that he was only twenty one.

He still had room to make mistakes.


’ “I’ve seen a lot of people stay in whatever they felt was safe,” he said.

I finally saw his wild side. Funny, it reminded me of my own determination to live outside the confines of  Seniorville,

“I don’t really want to live a life like that,” he continued, “sticking with whatever’s safe.”

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