Drummer’s Choice

Category: Words

I once saw a concert where there were two drummers onstage. There was a huge circle of every size drum imaginable suspended two rows high. These drum racks sat off to the side of the stage for most of the show, while the drummers each sat at their conventional drum kits. Everybody knew the inevitable drum solo was coming, we were looking forward to it. It was one of the reasons we came. After a while the rest of the band left the stage and the anticipated celebration of drums began. These were two of the best drummers in the world that had played together for years, developing their craft that culminated to what we saw in front of us. This night it was clear they weren’t communicating well with each other. Each took turns becoming frustrated with the other. It escalated to such an extent that one threw their stick at the other! Undaunted, the victim, threw down his sticks, made eye contact with his partner and they dropped to the floor. They put their bare hands out in front of them and began the simplest rhythm pattern on the ground. Eventually, they built up layers of rhythms they played off of, until they reached the drum racks again and completed their musical thoughts. I was grateful they didn’t settle on the tried and bored, instead seizing the opportunity to start with a fresh idea they could enjoy evolving with and we, as an audience would appreciate, and in this case, never forget.