For some reason, I always had it in my head that I'd be a good drummer. Nevermind that I had tried and failed at about half a dozen previous instruments; there was something about drumming that made sense to me. I took to it immediately.
I bought my own drum kit, and started taking lessons from a wonderful teacher. Drumming always seemed like a math equation to me, even though I admittedly suck at math. There was a pattern to it, a "this + this = this" kinda thing. Once in a while I'd play with some friends at a party, practicing my beats while they'd play along with guitar and bass, etc., but I didn't have anyone to play with that was at the same level as me. Enter my band - Hardstark.
Hardstark consisted of myself on drums, my lovely friend Yuko learning keyboard, and the beautiful Eliah on guitar and eventually singing. The aforementioned Micah was part of the band in that he came to every practice, and in the beginning basically taught everyone how and what to play. He had a stake in the band in that Eliah was his girlfriend so while Yuko and I paid him for his time in tacos, Eliah hopefully payed him in blow jobs. Tacos and blow jobs? Who wouldn't want this job???
The night Micah told me that Eliah had broken up with him, I knew Hardstark was over. In solidarity with Micah, I couldn't go on playing in this band, and expecting him to come to practices even though he was trying to get over her. So we stopped playing together. Sometimes I think of where we'd be now if they hadn't broken up, as if I'm the child in the middle of her parent's divorce.
I kept going to my teacher once a week, and I was getting better with every lesson, but eventually I was low on cash and the drumming thing didn't feel like it was going anywhere...like there was going to be any outcome to it. I still had my kit, but it became more furniture than instrument.
Last week I decided I needed to do something about that. I needed to give it one more go before I gave up and sold my drums. So I went on Craigslist and emailed some bands that advertised looking for a drummer. I got a response from a punk band who wanted to try me out, and over this past weekend I learned a few songs that they have been playing.
It was easy, honestly. Basic punk beats are no big deal, and I had a lot of fun dissecting Psychotic Reaction by Count Five. A couple hours before my try-out on Sunday night, I stopped by Micah's house and we jammed for a bit. I wasn't nervous, partially because of the half tab of Xanax I had taken, but more so because I was confident that I could do this.
To make a long story short, I totally choked. Honestly, I wouldn't have wanted to be in this band anyway - they weren't "my type", if you will, but it was still super embarrassing because I sucked SO BAD. I couldn't keep time, I kept stopping and fucking up. Oh my god, if I gave more of a shit I would have been mortified.
I'm not giving up the drums though, I'm going to keep trying and plan on resuming my lessons. Something was off last night, and I think it has to do with them not being friends of mine, of not being comfortable. I miss playing with Hardstark. I miss being able use the excuse that "I have band practice tonight" as to why I can't hang out. I miss being in a band. I'm not ready to give up yet.
Thanks to my lovely and talented sister, Leah, for the photos.