I’ve wanted to be in a band for as long as I can remember. Even before I started to play drums. As a kid with quite a wide imagination I thought up scenarios of me being on big stages in front of thousands of people being any band member. What I mean by that, sometimes I may be the singer (haha), sometimes the guitarist and sometimes the drummer. Since actually playing drums the last one has been the one worth thinking about.
There are few issues I am facing however…well mainly one…the fact that I can’t actually drum. But before this happened there were other problems:
- I am socially awkward and being in a band means you have to be able to communicate with a) one and other and b) others around you otherwise you don’t get anywhere.
- Being reserved. Yeah, a reserved drummer doesn’t really work. Especially when you fear playing in front of people.
- Getting nervous seems to be a daily thing for me, about anything. Even if it is starting a conversation with someone I know closely and that is an everyday occurrence. The thought of actually going on a stage…in front of people…is terrifying. I’ve done it a few times and it has been fine but it is the build up which is generally the problem.
- This last one is probably the biggest issue especially for someone who wasn’t/isn’t very likely to talk to strangers/acquaintances about possibly creating a band. None of my friends play instruments. Hmm.
However, in the past year the thought of being in a band has interested me more and more. I think it is because in that time I’ve started to listen to and follow “new bands” so I’ve been able to see the progress and the rawness of what it is like being in a band early on.
At my sixth form which I have recently finished there was (maybe is) a sixth form band. When I was in year twelve, they were really good and I think it helped that the year thirteens were actually quite talented and had some energy about them. The drummer for this band was in year thirteen and my psychology buddy – who played piano in the band – mentioned to me that they would need a new drummer when he leaves. I froze.
I never got asked. But I don’t think anybody was. In fact, I don’t remember there being any performances by the sixth form band when I was in year thirteen so perhaps it dissolved completely.
But here was an instance where I could have – maybe – been in a band but in a way it was my error that screwed this one up. I froze. I didn’t show I was keen.
So by the end of September last year I realised that was a dead end plus a big issue is that even though the school owns a car crash of a drum kit they rarely let anyone use it and I don’t have an actual kit myself. I have some crap electric kit which seemed great for a time but now is very disappointing.
At the beginning of October when I met the Kaiser Chiefs and more specifically VJ the drummer he asked me whether I was in a band. I said no. He told me that I should go for it because it is amazing. (Although I am not actually sure that is the word he used).
This fuelled the fire even more and in fact I started to play more and more. Then in January I got injured and the dream died. Well not completely.
It has been underlying ever since, bubbling under the surface and when I watched Oasis: Supersonic back in June the surface cracked. That night and for days afterwards I felt high in a way. I was floating because I believed that it could happen, I wanted it to happen, I thought “if they could do it why can’t I?”.
In an exam that week when I put down my pen feeling defeated by the last question I actually thought to myself “it’s fine because I am going to be in a band and I am going to be playing to thousands at Glastonbury one day”.
I was just kidding myself really. I know I was.
It is just so frustrating, wanting something that you can’t have. Not being able to play is annoying enough and having this to add to that is almost unbearable. I just want to play. I want to be in a band, write songs with my band mates and have some top banter on the way. I can dream. That’s okay.
Since my back injury I’ve been asked to be in two bands. One of which is playing the O2 Academy 3 sometime before the end of the year.
Someone has suggested to me to play a different instrument and I do have a guitar but the main problem with that is my sister is a guitarist. In fact, she got her first bass last week and she is so happy bless her. And I am pleased for her. I really am. She’s so passionate about her guitar and bass so me starting to play is definitely a no. Not worth starting a war over. And anyway it wouldn’t be the same. I am a drummer deep down. It just hurts that right now I can’t pursue that.