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APRIL 28, 2004 "I BROKE A STRING AT THE RECITAL"


JUST A LITTLE inside joke in that title there. Ann and Nicole will understand. No, I didnít say Anna Nicole. Ann AND Nicole. It was nice to meet you, Nicole. Iíd love to use that cool new word that you let me in on, the one that starts with "F" and ends with "tard." But Iím sure the FCC would be all hot and bothered by it, almost as aroused as they are over the sight of Janet Jacksonís breast.

Did I just name one of the Jackson F-tards on my very own website??

Well, it wasnít really a recital. And it definitely wasnít a "recital" of the inside joke kind. But I did get to jam out tonight at open mic night at the Pattenburg House. Finally. I broke the Pattenburg ice. Iíve been going there off and on over the past two years and hardly anyone even knows me. Whatís the only way to fix that? Get up on stage and recite. Or at least get up on stage and play some drums, man!

Those of you who know me in person will realize that I havenít been doing much playing lately. I havenít been going to practice with Gnome Dust on Monday nights. I sort of disappeared on those guys and feel rather like an F-tard myself. (Sorry John.) Even my private practicing has dwindled to just a few minutes here and there each week. Life has sort of piled up on me and I canít seem to get out from underneath it at the moment.

I ran into my cousin, Stephen, at a pizza place last weekend. He asked how the drumming was going and encouraged me to come out to open mic night at the Pattenburg. "Dude, there are never any drummers there on Wednesday nights." I thought about it for the past few days. Then I tried not to think about it today and get anxious. "What if they ask me to play Neal Peartís drum solo for the first live Rush album?" "What if they ask me to play ĎWipe Outí?" "What if I end up just having a freakiní stroke in the middle of everything?" What an F-tard!

After wrapping up my fatherly duties tonight, I headed out to the Pattenburg. My kids were so cool and gave me nothing but positive incentive to go. "Go! Good luck and have fun!" And then Sarah added, "Donít just sit there and do nothing! Play!"

As it turned out, there were two bands that played tonight. And there was at least one other drummer besides myself in the crowd. The first band was hosting the evening. They were called Soulís Release. The second band was called Heavy. Heavy did some cool 70ís covers. The singer looked kind of like Rob Zombie with a slight Robert Plant vibe. Soulís Release did several original tunes that sounded great. Then they did a cover of The Whoís "Teenage Wasteland." That was cool.

A few of us were hanging out near the pool room, making sarcastic remarks about people and just laughing like the F-tards that we are. After Soulís Release played their first set, my cousin, Ann, told the singer, Joshua, that I was a drummer and that I played with all kinds of bands. (What?) He chatted with us for a bit. We continued to act like idiots. But that was cool.

After Heavy finished their set, Joshua asked me if Iíd like to play a few songs with them. At first I declined, chicken that I am. But then I said, "Sure, Iíll play with you guys." It was a blast. We played a few bluesy tunes and had a great time. It felt tremendously good to me to finally play at the Pattenburg, where Iíve seen so many good bands. A few people were dancing. I think I heard Ann and Nicole shouting something about a recital from the back of the room. (Silly girls.)

It always feels good to play music. It always feels good to do anything that your heart and soul completely love. If only I could do it all the time! "I donít want to work! I just want to bang on the drum all day!" The difference between sitting in my cube with a damn tie on all day and sitting behind a drum kit playing my heart out is the same as the difference between being in jail and running through endless fields of freedom and pleasure.

I gotta get free!

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