Thursday, 20 February 2014

First Time Holding a Beat on the Drums

Playing the Drums

howtostartasong.comWhen I was about seven years old, I remember walking past this music shop and seeing this dark blue pearl drum kit. I didn't know what it was then, but man it looked cool.

Since then, I always had a liking for drums and the sounds they make. I never got to play the drums as I was growing up, they just seemed too far-out of reach, as far as having any capability goes. I ended up playing the guitar instead, which also became a fascination for me.

As I started practicing cover songs, I bought myself a drum machine and would work out all the drums required for the songs we were playing, in the band I was in. That helped me later to write out drum patterns for future original songs.

Over the past 20 years of writing original drum patterns on my drum machine; I have put together a long list of drum patterns that I can use to help me to "practice my drumming".

I bought my first kit

About seven years ago, I think the year was about 2006-07; I bought my first ever drum kit. No big deal I guess, but for me, it was!

I am now 44 years old and last week, when I was at my friend's place. "This is where I leave my kit". While I was having a quick bash on them I was able to hold a drum beat for the first time. That was exciting for me!

I have to thank my friend's 12 year old nephew. It was through him while he was in England visiting over Christmas, he was teaching him [my friend] a basic drumming lesson.

When he [my friend] arrived back in Australia, he then showed me what his nephew had taught him and from there I was able to play and hold my first ever drum beat.

Thank you for that lesson young man. I'm sure you will go on and rock the world!

It is amazing where and how you can learn something new and from who you can learn it from.

Self taught

Being a self-taught musician, the prospects learning to play the drums are a tantalizing thought. I know I will probably develop some bad habits, learning this way, but at this stage of life, I feel carefree enough not worry about those possible outcomes. "I'm not planning to undertake any major concert tours just yet, but maybe next year might be different. Mmmmm."

Anyway, if you are anything like me and you want to play an instrument that you have always wanted to learn, then I say find a way to get started and have fun with it.

Professionally taught

I do however highly recommend having professionally taught lessons if you want to learn how to play to the best of your abilities. Professionally taught lessons will teach you to play correctly and fix any bad habits that you may pick up and develop before they get out of hand, and hinders your playing.

If professional lessons is the way you want to go, then give yourself at least one hour per day to put towards honest practice, meaning, "practice diligently with what you have been taught". After all, you are paying someone to teach you, and you don't want to waste your money or your teachers time.

Good luck with what instrument you decide to pick up and "learn,learn,learn".


Monday, 10 February 2014

Writing a new song

Getting started

http://howtostartasong.com/designs.htmlHow to start a new song is sometimes tricky, especially if it's your first attempt at it, or even your one hundredth or one thousandth attempt.

Why can it be difficult for somebody who has written 10, 100, 1000+ songs, to then struggle to write another new song, despite all that experience behind them?

We can understand what a new songwriter goes through with their first attempt, as songwriters, we have all been there before. You remember! What do I write about? How do I start the lyric writing Process? Then, there's the music. How should it sound or what style of music should I play E.T.C?

Normal question's, a new songwriter will probably ask themselves at some stage, during their early development.

What does the experienced musician suffer from with writing a new song? 

Many things can affect the long time songwriter. It will usually depend on their lives and how things have unfolded for them, as far as the amount of success or failure they have experienced, from their push for success.

How then, do we use success and failure from our past experiences, and the effects those two elements can have on us in regard to our future enthusiasm towards continuing with our passions, not just in our chosen field, but any other field that we as human beings, have an interest in.

I guess the easy way of saying it is, "how do we stay fresh and excited after 25, 30 years of following our interest?"

I don't believe you can ever go back to the days of when you started out as a songwriter and recapture the enthusiasm and excitement and drive you had when you first started out. Getting older and life's forever changing and challenging scenarios tend to knock those early days into another dimension after a few years or decades.

What is the secret then, to writing a new song?

Back to basics is the key!

  • A dream
  • Desire
  • Excitement/enthusiasm
  • Passion
If you dream for the first time or 1000th time to have your song listened to by friend"s family or fans, then that gives you the desire, to either reach the masses, or just listening to your own creative abilities, or, what ever it is.

Then your enthusiasm for the project takes over to start the writing processes,[music, lyrics, arrangements, composing, E.T.C]

Then there's passion. If you lack passion for what-ever you are doing, then you will probably never finish what you start. Passion, I believe is the driving force between success and failure. When you need to put in the hard yards to get a project finished, it's your passion, that will drive you to the finish line.

There is one more thing on the list above that requires it to stand-alone. That is PROTECTION.
Protect your dreams, desires, enthusiasm and your passions.

 They are the most important ingredients in writing your first or 1000th song. Nothing happens without them. Always be on guard, and protect yourself from anyone who may not see things, the way you may see the world. Remember, negativity is a destroyer and it can come from different areas in your life. Friends, family, other band members, a boss,partner, or worse place of all, YOURSELF!

So friends, be happy, be honest with yourself, and keep writing. The world is waiting!!