The best thing about drumming

A few days ago I saw that thread where someone posted a video of some guy drumming along to Meshuggah and how that depressed him because he can't play that well. And, like probably a lot of others, I watched a bit of the video and kind of rolled my eyes because that music just sounds like noise to me. I've been trying to live a more positive life so I didn't post a snarky comment. But I did think it was kind of silly.

Then today I was listening to Joe Morello play with Brubeck - Sounds of the Loop - and went to YouTube to see a live video of it. You've probably seen it before, it's just amazing. And even though I like watching it, after seeing it felt a bit depressed because I realize I'll never, ever, be that good.

And then the irony hit me.

Yes, we can have arguments all day about which type of drumming is 'better' - I know my opinion! - but they both require skill and ridiculous amounts of practice. And - the best thing! - is that unless you're some superhuman drummer, even if you know one you probably can't do the other.

It's just a good thing to keep in mind, I guess, that skill can be used to do all kinds of crazy things, and there's always new stuff to learn.
 

MikeM

Platinum Member
Well said. I like Morello and Haake in roughly equal measure though for very different and obvious reasons. Imagine my despondency at knowing I'll never be close to either one of them! Heh. But the good news (for me anyway) is that I'm not aspiring to their levels of competency. There's so much cool and thoughtful drumming to be done at my altitude that I don't concern myself too much with trying to reach theirs. If it was important enough to me I might at least try, but it isn't so I don't.

I do love to watch those guys tearing it up, though, no doubt about that!
 

Beam Me Up Scotty

Silver Member
Well said. I like Morello and Haake in roughly equal measure though for very different and obvious reasons. Imagine my despondency at knowing I'll never be close to either one of them! Heh. But the good news (for me anyway) is that I'm not aspiring to their levels of competency. There's so much cool and thoughtful drumming to be done at my altitude that I don't concern myself too much with trying to reach theirs. If it was important enough to me I might at least try, but it isn't so I don't.

I do love to watch those guys tearing it up, though, no doubt about that!
This.

I see drumming as a way to let my emotions out. By nature, I am a very private person and as such drumming gives me an outlet. While I do aspire to be better, I never let another drummer's technical skill ever discourage me; I enjoy the drums for what they do for ME, and as long as I'm playing, I'm happy. When I do listen to some technical stuff, a la Haake, Morello, or whoever-have-you, I take their ability as inspiration, or motivation to improve myself. Do I know I am currently incapable of some of the things they do? Sure. I don't care though, again, so long as I'm just playing along.
 

mikel

Platinum Member
Like Beam, I dont feel what any drummer can do belittles what I do. I am also a fairly shy person, but behind a kit I come alive.
You could argue, up to a point, that If you could, or had, spent as much time as those two guys practicing, you would be up there with them. Probably, like me, most have to work and look after a family and run a home and all the other things we do to get by, so we dont have the time to practice 12 hours per day.
Dont sweat it, enjoy your drumming. No one else plays exactly the way you do.
 

StickIt

Senior Member
There's a fine balance between being happy with your drumming, and still challenging yourself to improve...that balance, when I'm there, is my favorite thing about drumming, on a purely personal level.

FYI, I can play either of those tunes with one hand and both feet tied behind my back...as long as I have that one hand free to press 'play'.
 

groove1

Silver Member
I only compete with myself...always trying to improve. Sure, I hear and see what others do and that inspires me to want to practice more etc. The main thing above all for me is that
playing music is fun (especially with other musicians), it's often a great cardiovascular workout, and it's good for the brain and soul.
 
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davelan

Member
Drumming in a band is collaborative and creative and the joy is in the product; good musicians produce good songs. If slavish, note-perfect renditions of other people's stuff is your thing, I guess that's fine, but I feel it's better to aim to be your own man rather than a carbon copy of someone you feel is somehow 'better' (and by all means steal and incorporate bits from the people you admire - that's basically what most great music is built on - but fretting over the fact that you can't reproduce something that's already been done?).

Be as good as you can be and, if you enjoy it, you'll get better.
 
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