|11-06-2013, 02:40 PM||#1|
Its just a little 5-piece Pearl...
...but nothing will ever replace the sentimental value of that first instrument you owned that spurred a long and wonderful journey of music and the influences that make music run through your veins...
Yesterday I had an experience that truly turned back the clock for me. Now I don't claim to be some uber-talented session drummer that jumps on with little local bands and plays little gigs here and there... thats not me... never will be. But when it comes to music and the fan that I have become of so many great acts over the years... it all comes down to a decision that I made at some point during the summer of 1997, in between my elementary school and middle school transition, when I told my parents that I wanted to be a drummer. I grew up going to high school football games with my family, just so I could see the drumline that I would later be a part of, and it had always struck me as the thing that would make my own and be passionate about.
Drumming defines me as a person: my musical influences, my education over the years... it has been a constant in all facets of my life and will always remain that way, even if it only remains so as a hobby in the back room of the house. One of the things that symbolized this was my very first drum set. I got it for Christmas during my 8th grade school year after expressing interest in being more than just a kid in the back of an orchestral setting playing 1/8th notes to Leroy Anderson's arrangement of 'Sleigh Ride'.
On Christmas morning, Santa had come through with a maroon (or cherry red I guess you could call it) 5-piece Pearl Export Series kit, with Zildjian ride, crash, and hi-hat cymbals. At this point I had no idea how to play the damn thing, I just knew that I would do whatever it took to learn and, again, make it my own. I started teaching myself how to play, basing most of what I knew on standard rudimentary combinations and as much syncopation as my right hand lead could muster when accompanied by my right food on a bass pedal. It was foreign, but only for a while.
Later I would discover the great drummers of the day, and days past, and would go on to form, as all drummers do, my own style and rhythm in my own head. Carter, Steve Gadd, Buddy Rich, Neil Peart, and the list goes on.
As I got older, and my craving for music continued to grow, the drum set became something I had to make time for. Yes, I was a part of a little garage band in high school, but that was the extent of my 'professional career' as a drummer.
Years later, the time had come where decisions had to made about this bulky piece of the past. I was a senior in college at the time, and my parents were beginning a cross-country move from Texas to South Carolina. The last visit I made back home, the weekend before the big move, they told me to take what I wanted and find something to do with the ‘rest of my belongings’, which was pretty sad. As I was living in a dorm at the time, I had no room for this drum set, and didn’t have the money to pay to store it, so on the way out of town my last stop before I hit the road was at a pawn shop to sell the thing. This was 5 years ago. Its something I’ve always regretted doing. As I made the 3-hour drive back to campus, I convinced myself that somewhere along the way, some kid will wind up with the kit and have the same experience I did... finding that passion in music, and hell, maybe even going further than I had with the skills that I had learned. It was behind me, it was gone, and I put it out of my mind as best I could.
Fast forward to yesterday afternoon:
My boss walks in to my office during a lull in the day, sits down, starts talking band geek stuff with me (his oldest is a freshman in a collegiate band and the next one in line is in high school band, so they’ve been going to a lot of competitions lately). Anywho, I have a little practice pad and some drumsticks sitting on my shelf, so he brings up my drumming history and asks if I own a drum set, and tell him about my old 5-pc Pearl and how it helped me develop the passion for music that I have today.
Boss: “Well where is this pawn shop?”
Me: “Oh its right around the corner here in Irving.”
Boss: “Have you ever called them to see if they’ve even sold the thing?”
Me: “No I haven’t, but I’d be willing to bet that they sold the thing years ago.”
Boss: “Can’t hurt to call and ask!”
We left it at that and he jumped up to go do something that had become urgent.
But my curiosity was peaked, so I decided why the hell not… I’ll call this place.
Called, told the guy who I was, he ended up being the same guy that bought the thing from me, so he remembered me. Then he proceeded to tell me that 5 years (1 layaway purchase attempt and 2 years of upstairs-storage) later… they still had the damn thing. And, because they still had it and it was taking up a lot of room… they had a price tag on it that is $150 less than what they paid me for it (although the guy claimed he didn’t remember how much he gave me for it).
Needless to say… I will be getting my old drum set back here shortly, and I am stoked. I can’t wait to tweak it, change the heads on it, etc etc…. I almost forgot what it looked like.
Just a cool story I thought I'd share.
(disclaimer: I posted here in the Musician's Forum due in large part to keep from bogging down an nDMBc thread with a post that's 3 miles long..... I do not claim to be much of a 'musician' as my experience is only that of noodling around in my free time... I'm not NEARLY as good as some of you fuckers around here )