Turning someone on to a composer or band should be as easy as “Listen to this!” That someone should go on the journey for themselves. The music should do the talking.
Of course, most of the time, this isn’t the case. We usually drag our friends through multiple listenings, barrage them with song after song. We evangelize about the greatness of this artist.
Unfortunately this evangelization is more like the traveling bible salesman than of the apostolic kind. Our friends become annoyed, slam the door, and start to dislike that band we pushed so hard for them to like.
I think the problem is that we stand in the way of recommending music. We want someone to like a band so bad. The band becomes us. It’s like we’re doing everything in our power for someone to like us.
We can’t control everything though. Your friends aren’t against you if they don’t like the Portishead album you gave them. We just have to let go and say “Listen to this!” Sometimes your efforts succeed and sometimes they don’t.
But if you love something, you have to be vulnerable enough to give it away.