I love playing the drums. I buy the best gear, spend hours researching snare drum sound, mic placement, drum head types, tuning, snare drum positioning, cymbal makes, cymbal positioning, pedal types, pedal positioning, hi hat height, drum throne height and position, the list goes on and on. I love playing the drums. Everything I just mentioned sounds very involved and complicated, I’ve clearly done my research and know my stuff, if you aren’t a drummer you probably have no idea what the majority of those terms mean. I do though, I love playing the drums. But everything I mentioned is all concerned with the buying and configuring of drum gear, not actually playing. Sure, the idea is that I build a solid foundation on which to play efficiently, but it doesn’t change the fact that I’m still not playing. Im not playing the drums. I love playing the drums?
I feel guilty that I’m wasting my time. Years are flying by and I’m not taking advantage of them. “Today I’ll do two hours of practice, and from this day on… two hours a day!”. Know how long that lasts? One day, two to three at most. It’s like going to the gym on January 1st with everyone else, and then 20% of people are there by the end of the week.
I feel this way about everything that I claim to want to do, at least with the drums I’m spending some time thinking about it and doing something, even if that something isn’t practicing. My to do list has is overflowing with aspirations of learning new skills and making new things, but the list seems to be growing and nothing is being checked off. I have a separate list of films I’ve been recommended by friends, those occasionally get checked off but my book list… forget it! I read one or two books a year if it’s a good year! I have a lecture series from Harvard of which I loved watching the first two, loved talking about how amazing it is that I can learn from this Ivy League University for free, but I’m not doing it, I don’t seem to have the time. I spend more time browsing YouTube for random novelty than actually watching the lecture series that I really want to watch, I seem to just prefer talking about doing it.
This has to change, life is flying by so quickly I can hardly keep up with it and I am constantly commenting on how much shorter the years seem. But if time is passing by quickly why not fill it? It’s passing regardless of what i’m doing.
Know how I changed it? I took out a timer, set it to five minute and practiced, then I had a break, I deserved it. The next day I did the same thing.
That was 8 years ago, I went from playing double bass drum 16th notes at 100bpm to 16th notes at 214bpm in a few months, and it was easy, all I did was spend 5 minutes a day practicing. For those who don’t play the drums, listen to the two files below and see the difference.
This was a struggle to play
A few months later and this was relatively easy