Ten years later, what's changed with your playing?

alparrott

Platinum Member
Just thinking back on what has happened to me/with me over the last ten years of playing and thought it'd be interesting to share and learn from you.

- Been in two bands long-term (one since 2010 with a three-year hiatus, one for the past four years)
- Slimmed down from my ridiculous seven- or eight-piece kit to a four-piece
- Picked up a LOT of Latin chops, both through playing in a Latin rock band and by expanding my listening
- Played three regional theater runs
- Went back to basics with timekeeping and burying the click
- Incorporated electronics into the kit
- Assistant worship pastor at my church (song selection, arrangements, technical direction)

If you put ten-years-ago me against today me, it'd be like the "you're amazing / you're hired" comic strip. I feel like a four-on-the-floor groove machine now. It's been good.

How about you?
 

petrez

Senior Member
Hmm, interesting topic. Might give it a go:

- Been in several band constellations, but just this year quit my main band, which I've played with for 14 years (!). Only in one band now, since the last 4 years, but this is the most succesful band, where things are evolving really fast and it amazes me how much acclaim we have got over our latest album and concerts. Album signings and new/bigger bookings seems to be the norm now, a bit weird when you are close to 40 and have a second kid on the way, and a lot of obligations... Used to be a dream when I was in my 20's, but I guess I spent way too much time in a band that wasn't really going anywhere.

- Been on three european tours (not that exceptional since I live in Europe...), played in most countries in Central Europe.

- As for my actual kit, nothing has really changed, other than I more than before consider taking a smaller setup to the smaller gigs if space is limited. I still prefer a big doublebass setup if the stage is big enough and the conditions are ideal, as I did 10 years ago. I have ditched one floortom though, used to have two, but I never really got to use the last one that much, the stuff we play is usually pretty fast. So I prefer more toms in front of me (3), a 16" floortom and more cymbals.

- When it comes to my playing I am much more experienced of course, more solid, have my nerves under control before a gig, stuff like that. Been working a lot on my fills, creativity and flow, seems to have paid off.
 
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toddbishop

Platinum Member
I use lighter sticks, and I like my cymbals a lot better. I don't know if my time has improved, but I don't have the doubts about it I used to. I've gotten a lot stronger with writing/designing effective practice materials/systems for what I want to do. My playing is in a weird place where I never feel like I know what I'm going to play, and it makes me nervous, but it always works out fine, in a way I didn't expect. I'm playing better than ever, but some things that I always thought were "my identity" are kind of slipping away-- that's probably why I'm playing better.

Businesswise I've gotten to do a lot of travelling-- since '11 four? Five? tours in Belgium/France with my group, two trips to Germany demoing/selling cymbals. My teaching practice is going better than ever, the blog is going strong, and I'm selling some cymbals I really believe in. Things are maturing, and thank god for it-- in the ten years before that I was struggling to make a living and find an identity with all of this.
 

bermuda

Drummerworld Pro Drummer - Administrator
Staff member
I had almost constant growth during the first 45 years since starting playing drums. There's always something new to learn and I certainly don't claim to know it all, but in the last ten years (after those first 45) there has been a lot less growth. I'm pleased (and a little surprised!) that my stamina and speed are as strong as ever, even as I've now crossed 65*. But in terms of technique or adding new things to my drumming vocabulary, I can't think of anything in the last ten years that deserves mentioning. And in terms of gear and logistics, again, nothing really new.

I'm always open to new things as they apply to my particular gigs, but there's really been nothing new on those fronts. I'm still having fun playing, and that's always been the most important thing for me.

* I played a high-energy, 4 1/2 hour gig last night, and didn't slow down or even drop a stick, although I was sweating like a pig. A pig that made $50! OINK!!
 

Dr_Watso

Platinum Member
* I played a high-energy, 4 1/2 hour gig last night, and didn't slow down or even drop a stick, although I was sweating like a pig. A pig that made $50! OINK!!
Damn dude, I hope some day I can make $50 bucks. You wouldn't believe how much exposure I have in the exposure bank, though. I'm told one day it pays back big.
 

GetAgrippa

Platinum Member
Wow ten years ago I was 56 still working and gigging-busy bee. Being 56 was a lot easier than 66 though I'm still in good health my sight, hearing, and memory have turned to crap-but it's just normal aging stuff. Had a sudden big drop in hearing in my good ear that freaked me out and I almost to point of quitting drumming but that would be like cutting off a limb so I didn't do it (obviously). I've moved, had a grand baby, and no longer working or gigging but I play almost everyday. Ten years ago I had no structured practice-and didn't practice rudiments but I was so busy then. So now I have a much more structured practice with rudiments-and also I listen to more music and a greater variety. I've learned a lot being on here for last ten years-especially now I actually practice LOL.-so I feel like I'm improving. Still have trouble playing the spaces so it's like an overloaded aircraft and I'm traveling down the runway dumping all my playing that doesn't belong till it becomes airborne. Recently I started playing at church this crappy Alesis e-kit-so I'm playing in public again-and because it's easy music and a limited kit-I really have to keep it simple now. I'm getting to use to e-kit but the snare and cymbals just annoy me in being so one dimensional but I'm making the best of it. I'm looking forward to commenting on this dead thread after another ten years ROFL.
 

MrInsanePolack

Platinum Member
I work on soloing a lot. Didnt used to care, now it's just another aspect of drumming I enjoy. I feel like it's the next step.
 

bermuda

Drummerworld Pro Drummer - Administrator
Staff member
Damn dude, I hope some day I can make $50 bucks. You wouldn't believe how much exposure I have in the exposure bank, though. I'm told one day it pays back big.
My exposure will pay off when I'm in my open casket. That should be a good send-off, I wish I could be there for it! 😮
 

alparrott

Platinum Member
Damn dude, I hope some day I can make $50 bucks. You wouldn't believe how much exposure I have in the exposure bank, though. I'm told one day it pays back big.
Never fails to remind me of this (h/t The Oatmeal):
1629667416822.png
 

Stroman

Platinum Member
Well, I have gone from playing full time in a loud, high energy country band to basically practicing at home for a hobby.

It's affected my playing in interesting ways. I've gone from playing straightforward parts, with which I was 100% comfortable and confident, to experimenting with technique and genres.

Once, a guitarist I worked with was talking with a new, less experienced bassist, and he told her, "You'll like playing with Stroman. You'll know exactly what you should be doing." And that was my strong point.

These days I work on my weak points. I tend to play quieter, and I screw up more because I'm experimenting. I analyze my technique more, whereas before I just made my body do what needed to be done. It's been a rocky road, lol.

Truth to tell, if I hit the stage today, I'd sound just like I used to, I believe. But I think I'd feel it differently because of the work I've been doing.
 

drumnut87

Silver Member
i dont have my head up my own ass for a start xD. and my experiences at university left me questioning my sanity, and i had a lot going on in the mental dept that was undiagnosed at that time.


as for my playing, im playing on the regular, not having to work my practice around everything else, having regular practice times, and im also not running myself into the ground for everyone else musically



so all in all, im in a better place physically, mentally and overall life-wise than i was 10 years ago :)
 

pocket player

Junior Member
1) i have learned how to really listen to the music i am playing to alot better and charting out songs.
2) become better at drum tunning
3) playing more for the song
4) practicing more ,improving my technique .
Good Post !
 

Frosticles

Silver Member
I have become a lot lazier :ROFLMAO: Showboating doesn't interest me anymore, playing for the music does :) I have a lot nicer gear now than I did 10 years ago.
 

Bo Eder

Platinum Member
I had almost constant growth during the first 45 years since starting playing drums. There's always something new to learn and I certainly don't claim to know it all, but in the last ten years (after those first 45) there has been a lot less growth. I'm pleased (and a little surprised!) that my stamina and speed are as strong as ever, even as I've now crossed 65*. But in terms of technique or adding new things to my drumming vocabulary, I can't think of anything in the last ten years that deserves mentioning. And in terms of gear and logistics, again, nothing really new.

I'm always open to new things as they apply to my particular gigs, but there's really been nothing new on those fronts. I'm still having fun playing, and that's always been the most important thing for me.

* I played a high-energy, 4 1/2 hour gig last night, and didn't slow down or even drop a stick, although I was sweating like a pig. A pig that made $50! OINK!!
It’s confirmed! You can get Bermuda on a gig for $50! Whew! I’m not alone!
 

Juniper

Gold Member
Around ten years ago I joined a band where I really had to up my game on my time keeping skills and musicianship / playing for the song and general professionalism (like not drinking at all before a show) due to the large gigs and tours we were doing.

My all round playing improved massively in that band which benefited me in the rehearsal room, on stage and in the studio. So I'm very grateful.
 
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