Listening To Music

When I was a little kid, one of the coolest ways to listen to music was at a diner that had what looked like miniature jukeboxes on every table. Shown here in its doodlewashed form is a Seeburg Wall O Matic (minus a couple buttons here and there in this speedy sketch), which is just a super cool name. These were magically connected to some larger unit lurking in a backroom somewhere, and allowed you to select songs while chowing down on a hamburger and fries. Really, it was the best thing in the world. These were disappearing when I was a kid, though you could still catch a 70’s hit on one, like Jim Croce’s Time In A Bottle. I preferred to bounce around on the booth to something more upbeat like the much older Jailhouse Rock by Elvis Presley. Truly, it was less about the artists for me back then, and instead about the entire magical experience of being able to insert a coin, browse, and choose your own songs. It would be years before the iPod showed up to replicate the experience. But it was never quite the same.

Things have sure gotten more advanced in life and that has made many things easier in so many ways. But in other ways, we’ve lost a little something in our effort to streamline every activity into a single device. Each experience sort of blurs into the next, and lacks its own identity. Perhaps, that’s why record stores are popping up again, offering that wonderfully physical way to shop for music and the amazingly unique sound that digital just doesn’t offer. I love going to a record store and looking at those fun album covers. Music, carefully packaged to grab attention, and sometimes scream for it, as you pass by. So much thought and creativity went into creating a full experience that was more than just the content. The same is already happening again to websites. Many of you are simply reading the content of this post, perhaps have never visited doodlewash.com recently to experience the full site. You totally should by the way! Doodlewash is much, much more than a blog. It’s a thriving and interactive watercolor community with lots of cool features and cool people to meet! 

As most of you who read my posts know, my mission and goal is to bring the world of watercolor lovers together. But, I’m equally wanting to create more than just ways to look at paintings. I sincerely hope to make a space that people visit and want to hang out in. Like those cool diners of the 50’s where meeting people and actually interacting for a bit of time was the main goal. In our fast-paced world, we’re so busy looking for new content, that we often forget to make new human connections. To me, this is one of the most important things an artist can do. We are more than content. We are people. Alive and full of imagination. Our worlds grow richer by the experiences and people that surround us. We make things that make this confusing world more clear. We’re a song that’s just waiting to be played by someone who decides, in that moment, they’re finally ready to pause, and start listening to music.

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About the Doodlewash

Da Vinci Paint Co.: Yellow Ochre, Quinacridone Red, Cobalt Turquoise, and Payne’s Gray.  Lamy Al-Star Safari Fountain Pen with sepia ink in an A5 Hahnemühle Watercolour Book.
#WorldWatercolorGroup - Day 22 - Listening to Music - Seeburg Wall-O-Matic - Doodlewash

Creator of Doodlewash® and founder of World Watercolor Month™ (July) and World Watercolor Group™. Sharing daily watercolor illustrations and stories while proudly featuring talented artists from all over the world! If you’d like to be a guest artist on Doodlewash.com, contact me!

Recommended6 recommendationsPublished in By Charlie
33 Comments
  1. Great painting! I used to love these too!

  2. Wendy Nelson 3 months ago

    Now, that is a blast from the past!

  3. smzang 3 months ago

    “I sincerely hope to make a space that people visit and want to hang out in. Like those cool diners of the 50’s ”
    You have accomplished your goal.

    Your site is one of my favorite spots on the Internet.

    Love that Seeburg…

  4. Sandra Strait 3 months ago

    Well, I remember the wall-o-matic! And trying to pry change from Mom and Dad to play a song. You’ve done a fabulous job in creating this site, Charlie, and you’re close to making your dream a total reality!

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 3 months ago

      Thanks so much, Sandra!! 😃💕 You’ve done such a fabulous job of participating… seriously… thank you SO much for all you do here!

      • Sandra Strait 3 months ago

        It’s been my pleasure. I’ve enjoyed meeting so many artists!

  5. Susan Cuss 3 months ago

    Love it! Yes, plenty of change was dropped into the slot, and picking the right button for the perfect song was fun!

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 3 months ago

      Thanks, Susan! Wasn’t it a blast!?! Loved those days!! 😃💕

  6. Nay Aung 3 months ago

    Love this post Charlie!Great message!

  7. SnehLata Maheshwari 3 months ago

    Lie as i have sad before 2. That u are very nice swemmer and always jump in to the sea, brought some things precious. Songs of 70s, weather English or Hindi. Both were made me mad . before dinner. We had a session of dance.wodnderfull.

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 3 months ago

      Glad this brought back good memories, Snehlata! 😃💕 And a dance session?? Even more fun!!

  8. Elisa Ang 3 months ago

    this is so cool, Charlie! Thank you for sharing that! Love the shine!

  9. Laura 3 months ago

    What a great doodle, memory and site! Thank you Charlie for all of your hard work to build a wonderful place to come to.

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 3 months ago

      Thanks so much, Laura! 😃💕 I love what this place has become! Thanks so much for being a part of it!

  10. Yvonne Reeder 3 months ago

    What a wonderful painting of an item that was standard in my generation! The last time I enjoyed the mini jukebox was at The Diner in Los Gatos – one of papa and my favourite places to grab a brunch when we lived there. Happy memory! Thank you, once again, Charlie for letting your memories spark mine! ❤️

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 3 months ago

      Aww my pleasure, Von! Thank you! 😃💕 I’m so happy these illustrations and stories bring back such good memories!

  11. Sharon Bonin-Pratt 3 months ago

    This is a terrific throw back to my childhood, an experience I’d forgotten about. The little jukeboxes at every table were nearly as exciting as a rock and roll band of my very own. What a fun post today, Charlie, thank you for the reminder.

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 3 months ago

      Thanks so much, Shari! 😃💕 hehe… glad you liked this! Yeah.. I totally loved these things!!

  12. Thomas Blanchard 3 months ago

    LOL I remember flipping back and forth on the jukeboxes like maybe I missed a flap of songs 🙂 oh yeah the doodlewash community is cool for sure! Hey Charlie do you photograph or scan your posted doodlewashes?

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 3 months ago

      hehe… yeah, those were the best memories!! 😃💕 And I scan all my doodlewashes…. photos just don’t retain the accurate color. Unless I’m traveling, then I have to resort to photos, but I prefer scans for accuracy all the way! 😉

  13. Sandra Gilbert 3 months ago

    I remember those little jukeboxes. So much fun and part of the outing for dinner.

    • Author
      Charlie O'Shields 3 months ago

      Yeah, weren’t they awesome!! I really loved these things!! 😃💕 hehe

  14. Elizabeth Metz 2 months ago

    Aaaaand now I’m tempted to make some kind of Spotify channel for watercolorists.

    (Not quite the same as a tabletop jukebox, but, y’know, *technology*….) 😀

  15. Sharon Nolfi 2 months ago

    I remember these! So fun. Your painting brings back the memories.

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