How and why I got interested in being a musician. I'm sure that you each have your own stories...

drummer5359

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When I was a kid My father always had more than one job, even though his primary job was as a department head at a rail road. When I was young, his second job was as a cab driver at night. When I was about six years old (1965) a cab driver that my father worked with was stabbed. My mother (strongly) suggested that my dad leave that line of work. He went a few months with no second job until someone offered him a job as a part time bartender. He first worked at a small neighborhood bar that oddly enough is two blocks from where I currently live. They closed briefly to remodel, he found a different bar where he worked for the next several years.

That bar (The Swizzle Stick) was a rock club in the "Oakland" neighborhood of Pittsburgh, near the University of Pittsburgh, Carnegie Mellon, and Carlow College. He generally worked there every night except Thursday and Sunday when they were closed. Occasionally he would work Thursday even though the place was closed. Sometimes the Friday band would come load in on Thursday and do a sound check. And... Sometimes he would bring his two young sons along on Thursday, we would sit and drink Pepsi while watching the band set up and do sound check. Sometimes they would play most of a set for my dad, my brother and I.

Most of the bands liked my dad, and were great with my older brother and I. "The Racket Squad", "Gary Glenn and the Soul Set", and "The Jaggerz" were some of the bands that I got to see and hear when I was six to ten years old. I loved it. When I started playing I was never looking to be in a national act, I wanted to do what they did, play in bars!

I played my first bar gig at age sixteen and never stopped until Covid-19 interfered. I wouldn't trade it for anything.
 
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pwc1141

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I was in my mid-teens in the UK when revivalist traditional jazz was popular and I would tap along on cereal boxes with hand made sticks. That progressed to Benny Goodman trio and quartet recordings where I discovered brush playing and while drumming was never a full time career, I have never stopped playing in clubs, pubs, hotels, concerts and Festivals across the 5 countries where I have lived. Jazz, funk, blues, rock, latin, country, bluegrass ... wherever I found an opportunity. Those are getting fewer but I live in hope ....
 

chillybase

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My interest in becoming a musician was when I watched Back to the Future when I was seven years old. Then at Christmas in 1990, I got my first guitar. I started taking lessons at some point in 1991. The first song I learned was Smells Like Teen Spirit. Eventually, I started playing with friends. My first real band was in 1993-1994, we were called Slap Happy. I was still in high school but we played almost every weekend. I had a couple of other bands in high school but they didn't do much.

Post-high school I formed a group called The Fashion Smoothies. This group essentially lasted from 1997-2000. There were short-lived incarnations from 2001 to 2004. I went back to school in 2005 to be a graphic designer.

My next band was Mafia Track Suit from 2009-2012. We had songs on the Rock Band Network and released an EP and a full-length. We didn't really go anywhere. We made more off the Rock Band tracks then we did with album related sales. I split from MTS in the summer of 2012. They continued for another few months. Our drummer, Todd, in MTS passed away in 2014. He was a dear friend of mine. I bought one of his kits in late 2014. I fixed it up and tried to teach myself. I started actual lessons 2-3 years ago.

I haven't performed out much since becoming a dad in 2013. I've only played one show as a drummer. I was hoping to get out more in 2020 but we all know how that turned out.

I've been trying to get back into songwriting but I haven't found my new approach. I don't have the sadness and loneliness that fueled earlier songs.
 

Drm1979

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Growing up anytime I was in the car with my parents they always had music on. My dad was into classic rock and southern rock my mom was into Elton John and acdc. So riding along I was always exposed to great sounding classic records. And as a kid I remember being attracted to the rhythms more than the leads bass and drums are what got my attention. Then one night when I was 11 my parents and I went to a football game to see my cousin who played snare in the marching band. Well we went down before the halftime show started to see the drumline warm up. That was it. I knew that I had an inner drummer waiting to play. So the next year of middle school I joined band and played 7th and 8th grade concert band and went on to join the drumline in high school. During my senior year i got my 1st drumset and it's been a 30 year addiction since. And my roots are still in hard rock and classic rock. But I also enjoy funk, punk, ska, reggae and several other genres that have great drums.
 

dtk

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My father had always wanted to be a DJ....he had a collection of 45s he had gotten from AM radio stations...he said he used to help them shut down for the night...anyway...he always had top 40 on and we'd often watch the Sonny and Cher and Osmond TV shows as a family...

Anyway...in grade school I was showing some dyslexic tendencies and somehow it was suggested that drumming might be helpful...I was all for it as "Ballroom Blitz" was all over the radio then and it was as if the drums were playing lead.
 

Dumpy

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I started on my brother’s friend’s Beatles drum set. It was set up in my family’s basement. My parents hated it! When you could join band in school, I wanted to be in percussion. My parents forbade it. I played saxophone.

I was also in chorale. Liked the singing, HATED the jazz hands. The choir director tried in vain to get me in the choir. I told her I would sing without the dopey dance moves. That was a non-starter for her, so I told her it was a non-starter for me.

When I was a freshman in high school, I learned the concept of “better to beg for forgiveness than to ask for permission”, so with the help of an accomplice, I got my first drum set. It was a pile of junk, but I could bang on something. I started playing and was actually playing in bands not long after. I was borrowing sets. I finally got my first real kit as a junior in high school, my 1970 Rogers kit. I started playing in bigger and bigger things, studying with a local session drummer and even giving lessons. Then I met my first wife. Exaggerating the war stories convinced her this was a pursuit to be ended.

As an adult, I would go sing karaoke. Every time I did it, the DJ would ask what band I was in. That sparked an interest...

Fast forward 25 years later, I was doing some singing in a band, then the drums came back. I gigged for roughly ten years. I quit for awhile and want to come back to it. In the end, I guess it was always something in me.
 

Hypercaffium

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I was a 10/11 years old kid when a priest walked in my classroom asking who wanted to sing a song. I said yes and I don't even remember what they asked me to sing, honestly.
He was auditioning for the Pope's choir and I ended up being employed for years. Long story short, I've never paid for school, books, conservatory, travels around the world, everything you can need. As a kid, it was hard both phisically and mentally, but they paid well and gave the opportunity to learn music in depth. It was a beautiful time of my life. I ended up my experience with them when I went to high school and never looked back. They've been good to me, but musical tastes change and life goes on. Now I work in a private company and music is just a hobby. I'm a multi-istrumentalist who is just started on drums (december 31 2020).
Bye!
 
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Deafmoon

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I remember getting toy Noble & Cooley drums for Christmas when I was a toddler and I remember they never survived the year. I always asked for a drum every Christmas. Then one year, I got a Stewart Blue Sparkle Snare with a 10” tin cymbal. I loved it and 50 some odd years later, still playing. Thank God, cause I love the drums.
 

BennyK

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I called on my buddy Lance every morning for twelve years to walk to school , he lived at the end of the street and later on we'd bus it to high school as well. His older brother had a set of Ludwigs and was in bands around town later on . Every morning waiting inside the front door , I listened to Roddy's " boom boom twack boomboom " cause he practiced a bit before he went off for the day . I was pierced even deeper than sneakin a peep at Playboy mags . Like getting bit by a vampire , it left its mark .

" Musician " ? I dunno . Lance took up organ and piano,went to university and got a music degree and today is one of the more important wheels in the Canadian music industry .

My road took a less travelled path .
 
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bassanddrum84

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Not sure if it was in my dna or what but my dad played guitar and my parents told me I was banging on pots and pans at 1. Played wipeout with my dads band (I’m sure it was just fills) at 2 on stage. Drumming is all I’ve ever known. First set was a gorgeous Ludwig my grandparents got me when I was 4 22/12/13/16 in a blue sparkle. Had it until I was 16 and it got stolen. Then got a mij stencil kit and progressed from there.
 
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bassanddrum84

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T
I was in my mid-teens in the UK when revivalist traditional jazz was popular and I would tap along on cereal boxes with hand made sticks. That progressed to Benny Goodman trio and quartet recordings where I discovered brush playing and while drumming was never a full time career, I have never stopped playing in clubs, pubs, hotels, concerts and Festivals across the 5 countries where I have lived. Jazz, funk, blues, rock, latin, country, bluegrass ... wherever I found an opportunity. Those are getting fewer but I live in hope ....
That’s awesome. Even cooler playing that many genres. Keeps ya well rounded and working. What’s your favorite to play.
 

studrum

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I was a 10/11 years old kid when a priest walked in my classroom asking who wanted to sing a song. I said yes and I don't even remember what they asked me to sing, honestly.
He was auditioning for the Pope's choir and I ended up being employed for years. Long story short, I've never paid for school, books, conservatory, travels around the world, everything you can need. As a kid, it was hard both phisically and mentally, but they paid well and gave the opportunity to learn music in depth. It was a beautiful time of my life. I ended up my experience with them when I went to high school and never looked back. They've been good to me, but musical tastes change and life goes on. Now I work in a private company and music is just a hobby. I'm a polistrumentalist who is just started on drums (december 31 2020).
Bye!
Wait a minute - you sang in the Pope's choir? The guy in Italy who lives in his own city inside Rome? The leader of the Holy Roman Church?

This is surely a first for the Forum!
 

pgm554

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The jr high I went to was full of idiots and thugs(more than the usual psychos found in jr high).
At lunchtime ,one had to keep aware of being shaken down for money and bullied.

State law dictated that you couldn't drop out until 17,so all the real dregs of the earth that were stuck in jr high enjoyed
bullying those of us that carried book bags and made the honor role.

Riots were of real concern as they'd happened before.

I noticed that if you were in the band ,you didn't have to spend your lunch in the commons area where all the psychos hung out.
A friend of mine said they were looking for a tenor drum player and recruited me. The perk was you got to hang out in the bandroom at lunch away from the future murderers (no really,I went to school with 3 convicted murderers) who were waiting to age out of school.

They had a national championship marching band ,along with some incredible musicians (Colaiuta)
I kind of lucked out in that he and I became good friends and I learned a lot from him.
 
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equipmentdork

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My dad, at 17, wrote a song that ended up on a Ricky Nelson album, He had a doo-wop group that would come over to the house and sing. He'd tell me about being classmates with guitarist studio legend Hugh McCracken and his beginnings breaking into the biz. It all seemed like some other planet, along with all the 45s I would digest, along with Beatles, Beach Boys and 70s soul hits. It was a world I wanted to live in.

I played on a family friend's demo at a 16-track studio in 1981(badly) when I was 13. Once I had the studio experience, there was no going back. Picked up guitar and piano around this time and....I'm about as good today as I was back then. I'm happy to have music as a hobby.



Dan
 

backtodrum

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I remember getting toy Noble & Cooley drums for Christmas when I was a toddler and I remember they never survived the year. I always asked for a drum every Christmas. Then one year, I got a Stewart Blue Sparkle Snare with a 10” tin cymbal. I loved it and 50 some odd years later, still playing. Thank God, cause I love the drums.

I had that same snare drum and cymbal. Blue sparkle and cymbal. I believe my parents bought it from Montgomery Wards back in the day early 70s.
 


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