Was there a point where you stopped feeling like a faker?

Woolwich

Silver Member
Last night at the rehearsal of one band, me and the bassist jammed through the beginning of a song that we both play in another band. When we got to the chorus he stopped, threw his hands up and said “I don’t know what she plays in that bit, I’ve just been blagging it for the last three years”. I hadn’t noticed so obviously I didn’t know he was blagging either. But with the thicker end of a hundred gigs under our belts together I suppose that says it all!
 

GetAgrippa

Platinum Member
Sounds like the "Imposter syndrome". I think lots of people growing up with dyslexia have the same feelings. Though the issue has nothing to do with intellect lots of famous and/or successful people have it. I think if you are self-taught , and never really cultivated learning all aspects , though you may gain some proficiency you still feel inadequate-because just being aware of inadequacies.
 

cbphoto

Gold Member
I've felt a similar way about my drumming/musical weaknesses, until I began playing with three other guys who were far better musicians than I (degrees from Berklee, U. of Maryland and U. of Illinois). By playing music of varying degrees of difficulty with three skilled musicians, my ability to listen, hear & play improved immeasurably. As we played out more and more, my feelings of inferiority and ineptitude vanished.

We played a couple tunes that had odd tempo breaks and the first few times I bungled one of the parts, the keyboard player (Ph.D. in music/piano) helped me through it by counting, playing notes and showing me how to work it out.

These minuscule improvements vanquished my insecurities.
 

jimb

Member
Sfunny but I literally do not understand the question. I've only been playing drums for a year but have been a bass player all my life and have often tinkered with any drummers kit if they would let me.
Well after a year of hard practise I can now play a very steady groove and can even play Steely Dans - My Old School reasonably well. Am I faking it?...absolutely not.
My crusty band leader after my audition said..."when can you start"....yep, I'm a drummer and don't see it any other way.
 

CommanderRoss

Silver Member
Yes.
Last year, I was asked to fill in for a guy in a band I knew pretty well. He asked me off the cuff to come out and do the gig with 0 prep. He had no worries about whether or not I could do it. He just knew.

Now I'm not one for compliments & often have a hard time believing I'm doing well at all. But he showed me that I can do it & that I just need to watch for his prompts and serve the songs.
I did and the gig was THE most memorable of them all.

From then on, my confidence of knowing my place and supporting the band is tenfold.
 

cbphoto

Gold Member
I'll add one more thing:

Be so thoroughly prepared to play your set that you have 0% nervousness/anxiety/etc. Then you stop thinking about yourself and build your own sound based on the playback/performance. Easypeasy, because by then, if budget allows, one can try out new gear (e.g., snare drums, cymbal types) and begin to truly influence the music and the band's overall sound.
 

bud7h4

Silver Member
I'm not faking music. I've always been musically inclined, and I think what I play sounds creative and interesting.
However, having skipped formal study entirely, I am faking in the sense that I sound better than I am. A good analogy might be someone with a beautiful voice, able to articulate an idea very well, but only having a 6th grade vocabulary.
 
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PorkPieGuy

Platinum Member
I tell people all the time that I'm an awesome drummer...for the town I live in. However, if a "real" drummer moves into town, I can pretty much call it quits.

In one of the bands I'm in, not only am I faking it, but so are the bass player and lead guitar player(s). So many times our lead singer (who plays acoustic) will say something (to a live audience no less) like, "Let's play 'Stump the band'!" He'll start playing and singing a song we've never played before, and within 5-10 seconds, we all have it and will jump in. While it can be a little frustrating, it is fun to stay on your toes like that. Sometimes we will play a song we've not played in 6 months. Or maybe we just listened to the original version during practice. Or maybe he will start a song that's only halfway written. I'll have to say that 95% of the time it works out just fine. It's crazy though.

I don't know my rudiments, how to read drum music (I do make my own charts), and I'm currently on the hunt to find actual usable drum fills that I've not played a million times already. I think my primary strength is that I'm a musician first and a drummer second. That little skill has gotten me further than anything else.
 

jimb

Member
I'm not faking music. I've always been musically inclined, and I think what I play sounds creative and interesting.
However, having skipped formal study entirely, I am faking in the sense that I sound better than I am. A good analogy might be someone with a beautiful voice, able to articulate an idea very well, but only having a 6th grade vocabulary.
But thats what I mean. If you sound good then you are good.....its the end result that matters, surely.
 

Woolwich

Silver Member
Here’s a story I haven’t told for a long time.
It was the winter of 1984, I was in in the Upper 6th Form Of school and my mate had his guitar (a cherished Gibson Flying V that he still owns) with him because we were due to rehearse for the Annual Christmas 6th Form concert. None of us were studying music, none of us ever had, none of us have ever had any type of lesson. In a free period in the common room a fellow student who had sat O level music and was now sitting A level music was trying to play scales on iirc her clarinet and struggling to get them right. Which lead to the strange tableau of a Heavy Metal guitarist with a Flying V playing the scales alongside her and naming to her ahead of time which note she needed to play next.
It would be harsh to call her a faker but I’d imagine that scales are bread and butter vocabulary for a music student, perhaps it’s the difference between “living” music and “studying” music.
 

Mastiff

Senior Member
A common theme I get from many of the confident people is that you seem to have gotten yourself into a musical situation where you are unlikely to be called on to do something outside your ability. So either the environment is comfortably constrained (playing with buds in a known, limited set of genres) or you actually do have excellent chops.
 

Woolwich

Silver Member
A common theme I get from many of the confident people is that you seem to have gotten yourself into a musical situation where you are unlikely to be called on to do something outside your ability. So either the environment is comfortably constrained (playing with buds in a known, limited set of genres) or you actually do have excellent chops.
Very likely. Going back to my very first performance I rarely get nervous before gigs. It’s not that I’m made of stone, it’s just that in a fashion similiar to the “the more I Practice, the luckier I get” saying, I’ve always rehearsed what I’m going to play to iron out any problems. I suppose a difference between a blagger like me and a consummate professional is that they’ve rehearsed more styles and gendres whereas I’m a one or two trick pony.
 

TMe

Senior Member
"I'm not a drummer, but I play one on stage."

As soon as I cultivated that attitude, my stage fright vanished, and I actually started being a better drummer. I walked on stage trying to act calm, cool, collected, like I really knew what I was doing. It made a huge difference. I didn't make any fewer mistakes, but I stopped panicking and choking when I made a mistake. I acted more relaxed and confident, so I was more relaxed and confident. To some extent, we become what we pretend to be.

If you think about it, many musicians create characters that they portray. Tom Waits, Leon Redbone, Alice Cooper, Marilyn Manson - those would be obvious examples, but I think many musicians have an alter ego that they play with. It makes life easier.

So my character is a competent drummer, and I try to play that character convincingly. If all goes well, nobody sees what a hack I really am.

...the more I learned, the more I learned how much I did not know.
That's life. And the less we know, the easier it is to have strong opinions. That's why I try to reign in my strong opinions about drumming. Almost always, they're just symptoms of my ignorance. The more I learn, the less opinionated I get.
 

larryace

"Uncle Larry"
The feeling like a faker thing is detrimental, and is a choice. All bad issues start with bad thinking...thinking about feeling less than for instance. Change the program, take this bull by the horns, it won't hurt. Otherwise it won't end.

You are what you see yourself as, which is highly manipulate-able.

There, that was nice and light lol
 
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GetAgrippa

Platinum Member
Well if you have feelings of inadequacy when in reality you are successful then it's the Imposter syndrome-so you got an issue. If you have a feeling of inadequacies because you're a talentless hack who rarely plays drums well then that perfectly normal -good for you better than delusions of grandeur. An old forum member comes to mind LOL.
 

TMe

Senior Member
A textbook I read for a psychology coursed talked about the "French waiter paradox". Some uncultured guy goes to Paris and wants to be a snooty waiter in a fine French restaurant. So he fakes it. He dresses like a French waiter, he affects the mannerisms and attitude of a French waiter, he trains to be a sommelier, etc. He does a great job of faking it. Then one day he realizes, "Wait a minute, I AM a French waiter."
 

GetAgrippa

Platinum Member
Some people really are fakers-when I was in grad school there was med student who would hang around the Cell Bio and Anatomy department hitting on one of the secretaries. Within the year it was discovered that he and the secretary were stealing funds from the department. Further investigation proved the student was actually an ex-felon who just got out of prison and had fabricated his whole academic career. Interestingly he was a straight A student but of course he was dismissed and prosecuted. I wonder if he cheated or was he really that bright-I seem to want to believe the later since he got that far??
 
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