I’ve played drums really since I was in like 7th grade, maybe earlier – my parents can confirm this. It’s been a long time none the less.
I haven’t had a drum kit in 10 years.
When I decided to move to Canada to be with my now wife, Lyn, I sold my kit in the States ’cause it seemed like too much work to try and ship/move it. I was kind of caught up in the whole ‘pack up and leave on a new adventure thing’ and I like to pack light.
I remember at the time thinking, ‘I’ll pick up a cheap used kit up there.’
Well, it’s 10 years down the road now (My God, has it really been that long?) and I’ve laid my hands on actual drums twice.
I played 2 songs with the band at my wedding (Rocky Mountain Way, by the Eagles, and Cocaine, by Eric Clapton) and everone was stunned, as most my family didn’t even know I played. Oh and damn, them are some romantic wedding type songs too, ain’t they?
One other time, I rented a kit and jammed one night with my boy Tyler in Nova Scotia. It was an awesome experience and he and I still talk to this day about recording togehter, though I don’t know when it will happen – more my problem, not his.
Life, kids, job, finances have all consipred to keep me from the kit. Not to say at all that I blame any of them, because please understand that I don’t at all, but from time to time I catch myself air drumming to something and realling missing that ‘feel’. It’s an amazing thing.
I miss banging on the drums. I miss the primalness of it. I miss making music.
I always said that I wanted my kids to grow up in a musical household and while I’ve done my best (Julia’s favorite records are currently Jack Johnson and James Blunt, but she also digs some David Bowie) there’s no musical intruments in the house at all. I’ve thought about taking up guitar from time to time as I’d like to be able to play an isntrument like that. Something you can write on. Something that when played unaccompanied, with just a vocal – can stop time and transcend it – right there, with no amplification no anything, simply bare. Chilling. I still come back to the drums though, as it’s what I’m already proficient at. I could start guitar, but I’d be starting at ground zero. With drums I’ve already got a start. I don’t really know if I’m a ‘good’ drummer or not. I understand the instrument. I’ve got good ‘feel’. I’ve been told I’m good.
Bottom line is, there’s been times when I’ve been with other musicians playing and we’ve ‘locked in’ – I know it sounds cliche, but the musicians out there will know what I’m talking about – it’s a transcendental moment.
I’ve worked with and for rock bands and partied with some fairly big one’s but it’s never really been my ambiiton to be a super star. What I really find amazing is playing in a small room to 50 people, and there’s that moment, when the whole band clicks, and the whole audience is in, and every one takes off on that trip. No one knows where it’s going, but it’s only good, and for that few minutes, only that room exists, and only that sound, and only that singluar conciousness.
I miss that.
And I miss banging on things and making a load of noise.
I miss the ‘pocket’.