Today we are going to talk about being a drummer and some musical stuff!
So for those of you that don’t know me, I started playing drum’s at aged 11. This was after I asked my mum if I could learn guitar and she told me they were noisy, so how about drums? Years later, she finally admitted that she didn’t think I was disciplined enough for the guitar and thought I was a better suit for drums. She wasn’t wrong. Drumming became my whole world. I went Drum Con in London at 15 where I was one of three girls who attended.
I played solidly until I was 19, using music to channel and control my depression. I played every day, practising anything that took my fancy, learning by ear and reading music. I played several live shows with Rock School, playing everything from my secondary school hall to the Electric Theatre in Guildford. I bet you’re wondering why I gave up, life got in the way, boys got in the way, pubs got in the way.
Flash forward a couple of years to a few weeks before my 26th birthday and my Dad asks what I wanted as a gift. I had been thinking about starting it up again, because to be honest, quitting drums has been my biggest regret. I missed playing and practising, I missed throwing myself into something I truly loved doing and something I could focus my bad days on. So I was so thrilled when my Dad came through and bought me an electric kit.
I started playing daily. The beauty of an electric kit is I can play as much as I like at whatever time, without pissing my neighbours off (we have nice neighbours) The only issue is when I sat down to start playing, the only thing I could remember to play was “Wake me up when September ends – Green Day”
That’s it. One Green Day song.
However soon I was listening to songs I used to be able to play and picking them up again by ear. After 4 months one of my friends reached out to me on Facebook, letting me know her husbands band were looking for a drummer. I protested a little, letting her know that I wasn’t any good and I was playing for fun, however she managed to get me to agree to just go and meet her husband and jam, just to see how we worked.
I was nervous as hell. Unconfident. My inner saboteur was telling me I wasn’t good enough and why was I even there? Luckily Tom, made me feel so comfortable, even though, once again, all I could remember to play was bloody Green Day.
It felt lovely to be able to play with someone again, who didn’t put pressure on me and made it fun and easy.
After a few hours, I was buzzing, happy that I had stepped out my box and into a situation where a few months before, I wouldn’t have had the confidence to do so.
After the sesh, Tom challenged me to learn a song for our next meeting. “To have or have not” by Lars Frederiksen and the Bastards. Now I sat, I learnt that song, via ear. I played for three hours, every night, without fail to make sure that I was as close to perfect as I could be.
The time came for me to play in front of Tom; I’m not going to lie, I was freaking terrified. However, I went in and smashed it out the park (in my opinion)
From there Tom provided me with some of the bands music, which I sat and learnt, by ear as there is nothing on paper. Soon came practising with Dameo too, now for me that was totally terrifying. I was used to playing in front of Tom, but adding someone else to the mix, that was new territory for me.
The boys made me feel so comfortable and I am pumped to play with these guys in the future.
If you ever have the chance to get your kids into music, I throughly recommend it. It’s a beautiful thing to learn. It also teaches kids discipline, hard work and practise, whilst also helping creative thinking and motor skills. It can also help them be more active listeners and it can also enhance their health and wellbeing and increase their stamina.
I’m incredibly thankful to my parents for getting me into music and giving me the chance to explore the musical world, not once but twice.