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Thursday, July 23, 2009

To play (in a band) or not to play (in a band)

Two years ago, when I wasn't reporting traffic or writing, I was playing drums in a couple of bands. There were many trips up and down stairs with my sensibly-sized four-piece drum set with two crashes and one ride cymbal. I rehearsed a couple of times during the week and played shows on the weekend. I liked the people I played with, and I enjoyed and weathered the (sometimes frustrating) usual things that come with playing. Well, for almost two years now, my life has not had any of the joys or pains of playing with a band.

All the activity disappeared rather quickly off my radar. I was fired from one band for reasons that I'm still not sure why. (I think it's due to the fact that I play aggressively during rock-out parts, but if that's really the reason why, then it's a pretty lame excuse to fire somebody from a rock band.) With my other band, something (or maybe a lot of things) just slowly took the drive out of us. We went from practicing every week to just practicing for an upcoming show.

So, for the past year or so, my activity behind a drum set has been reduced to very little. I still play a lot, but the times of being in the room with other people are scant. Sure, there are times I jam with friends, but that's not every week. I love playing and I just keep playing because I want to. In many cases, I can't help but tap along.

What's strange about this situation is how rare it is for a drummer with a drum set to be without a band. I only half-joke that every town and every college has a lot of guitar players, but every bass player and drummer are already in at least one band. So, what gives?

As tempting as it would be to play in another band again, I'm really hesitant to join a business masquerading as a band. Without fail, it's happened to me three times before where the band has already formed, has a way of working together, and just needs somebody to rock out and keep the beat. Well, any sort of input from me as a musician (yes, there are drummers that know a few things about arrangements, chords, and song structures) seemed to fall on deaf ears.

Once again, I'm using the excuse of "bad situation happened before, don't want a similar situation again." But that's the way I tend to think, hence why I get frustrated and overthink these sorts of situations.

Still, I can't forget the excitement I felt while I was at a party a few weeks ago when a friend of mine mentioned half-jokingly that he, along with his friend and me, should start a band. Though he was mainly joking (he's already busy doing his own band, doing solo shows, and working a full-time job), the thought was definitely positive.

So who knows, maybe I'll saying something completely different in two years.

1 comment:

Richard of DM said...

My band needs a drummer. We insist that you play aggressively during all the parts of all the songs.