An attempt at a blog

I really haven’t written a blog. I usually find myself quite busy playing music, hosting a weekly open mic, hosting a weekly radio show, rehearsing with bands, playing shows, and trying to eat food and have a drink and a smoke every now and then.

Music has been a part of my life for as long as I can remember.  My mother plays piano and sings beautifully, so I was exposed to that loveliness. She loved playing Beatles records, as well as Bob Dylan, Arlo Guthrie, and Melanie. Later came Pink Floyd. All of these records got into my brain whether I liked it or not.

As I grew a little older, I wanted to play music. I probably should have just learned piano from my mother, but instead, at 8 years old, my folks bought me a cheap electric guitar and a small practice amp. I loved Michael Jackson and Prince and Def Leppard, and I wanted to play electric guitar. I took lessons from some loser at a music store. I only call him a loser because in one year of lessons, I was on the B string. Two strings in a YEAR. No chords. Not a single chord. Just picking out Twinkle Twinkle Little Star, and the like, on those two high strings.

He was taking advantage of my parent’s very small amount of money, and my 8 year old naïveté. I quit.

I would next move to the snare drum, but eventually went back to the guitar- and I’ve never really left.

Next: The snare drum (or lack there of)

The snare drum (or lack there of)

I honestly can’t remember why I decided to move to snare drum, but the first thing that comes to mind is The Muppets drum kit I had when I was 6 or 7. I don’t have many memories of actually playing those drums, but I have one vivid recollection of my red haired neighbor, Sarah, sitting behind the kit while I stood and watched her bang away in a non rythmic fashion. Smashing around wildly, hair flying around. It was the first time I was interested in girls.

I joined the band at school and took up the snare drum. Sort of. I learned to read the sheets, and practiced away on my little drum pad. It was a wooden one, with the rubber pad on the top. The Star Spangled banner was one I distinctly remember, as that big fib of a song was the reason I quit playing snare drum four or five months into it.

See, the reason I said that I sort of played snare drum, is because I didn’t. Only the two best players used the actual drum. The other six kids were silently playing on the muted pads. I made a huge mistake when we performed our national anthem, and quickly realized no one could hear a single thing I was playing. I practiced evening after evening for a week or so to play that song with all the cool rolls. After my mistake at the performance, and realizing that no could hear a thing I was doing, I was just banging on the pad like a gorilla.

Then I quit playing, or not playing, the snare drum in the school band.

I will learn patience eventually.
Pictured : The Fumblemuckers. Photo by Donna Smith, Crossover Productions.