It's no secret that I'm into drums. I'm a self-proclaimed drum geek and nothing makes me happier than talking about drumming, working on my sticking, checking out drum gear, and meeting people in and around the world of drumming. Last October I wrote a blog post about reconnecting with a few drum corps friends, my first drum instructor, and also meeting some new friends in the process. The event was a percussion meet held to attract music teachers from both regular and specialized schools to the fine art of percussion, and to do so two bands were on hand to explain their respective instruments and various techniques. The first band was a Brazilian style "bateria", which gave the meet quite a festive start. This is my old instructor's band by the way. And the second was a full-scale drum line consisting of seven snares (plus two spares...), three multi-tenors, five bass drums and three cymbals. Marry this drum line to a Nightwish cover band and an orchestra and you've got Wishmaster. And shit-tons of power!
Soon after the meet there was rumors that the drum line experience was going to be repeated; the full Wishmaster show was held for a local children's foundation and it had great success. And so it was that I kept in touch with these new friends and I made it known that if there was to be another edition, I wanted to be in on it. As I had mentioned last fall, I started practicing my rudiments a lot steadier in case something happened. And some time last week it did. The drum line's leader sent me an invitation for this year's edition first drum line meeting! So ever since that invitation I've raised my practice time from 1 hour a day to 2-3 hours. I know I can make the drum line as a cymbal or bass drum, but what I'm really shooting for is the snare line; I don't think I can make the quads as that takes some serious skills! My motivation: if one of my old time drum corps friends can make the bass drum line after 30 years without holding a pair of sticks, I can make the snare line. I realise that it's a huge step and it will involve an awesome amount of work, but I know I can do it. But honestly, I will not be disappointed if I don't get a snare spot; hell I'd just be happy being a roadie and changing drum heads and hauling stuff. But tomorrow night as I formally meet the drum line I fully intend to give everything I've got to give and maybe, just maybe, I will get to kick-start my drum line career after my own 30 year hiatus.
On a related subject, the bar where we've been holding the Montreal EVE Meets sometimes has some Audience Participation nights where people show off their singing skills, guitar chops and whatnot. Take a wild guess what I'd like to do :) I've found some snare solos to practice, most notably from my two favorite drum corps, namely Santa Clara Vanguard and Phantom Regiment. Needless to say a lot of work will be spent nailing the solos on the practice pad before I attempt 'em at full volume on a snare drum in front of an audience. But yeah, I'm getting weary of telling people I play drums... now I want to show 'em!