We haven't had a good, "Everybody chips in" thread for a while. So post em up.
-Freshman year of High School, I was REALLY into grunge. And not just the good shit like Soundgarden (Superunknown was the first album I ever owned as a physical CD) and AIC. I was very vocal about my favorite band being Pearl Jam. Pearl Jam had released like, 3000 "official" live bootlegs of every concert they ever recorded on itunes at the time, and I bought more than one. Under the belief that live versions of the same song recorded in different cities were worthwhile things to have. Once my mom told me Pearl Jam was on TV and I just angst screamed from my room, "PEARL JAM WOULD NEVER SELL OUT LIKE THAT MOM". Bizarrely enough, I owned a bunch of Iron Maiden (Number - SSOASS) and Metallica at this time, and probably listened to them more, but I was very adamant Pearl Jam was my favorite band. I don't even remember why, I just thought Pearl Jam was "cool". I blame hormones.
-Sophmore year of High School. I got way into late 60s/early 70s hard rock/proto metal. It was shameful. There are a lot of bands I discovered during that time I still listen to like crazy. Thin Lizzy, Hawkwind, Deep Purple, Black Sabbath, Motorhead, Rainbow, UFO, Cream, Uriah Heep, 70s Scorpions, etc. etc. etc. But I have repressed the memories of doing things like reading a 1,000 page plus biography on Jim Morrison because I am vastly ashamed of them. There was also some seedy blog hosted in some ex Eastern Bloc country I used to visit like crazy to pirate the good "obscure" shit that was out of print. Like Leaf Hounds "magnum opus" Growers of Mushroom. I got way into nerdy 70s prog rock too, Yes/Rush/ELP/King Crimson are all givens. And though I consider a lot of those bands to have great moments, I can't listen to them anymore with the fervor of discovering them for the first time thinking I had found a realm of songwriting wizardry unknown to mortals. I got into obscure shit like Ozric Tentacles, Gandalf's Hammer, and Amon Duul II. I don't even remember what they sound like anymore. Lots of heavily reverbed wooshing noises I think.
-Sophmore year of College. I wouldn't listen to anything that didn't come from either early 90s Florida or Scandinavia.
In contrast though, I'm happy I got into power metal early on (Savatage, Helloween, Gamma Ray, etc.), first subgenre I discovered after thrash (that's a given, thrash is everyone's first subgenre experience). Power metal is undoubtedly the most shameful of all metal genres to like as an adult, but that shit was formative to me.
I was a huge little wigga as a 12 year old and had a huge fascination with Tupac, Eminem, Canibus and Wu Tang.
Then I got real stoned off my tits one time at a friends place and he put on 'Nothing Else Matters' and the rest is history.