COLLABORATE AND LISTEN

Original title amiright?


So, I’ve been playing the drums for years. I got my first drum set when I was eight years old (still have it) and haven’t really looked back. I grew up in church where you had to be at a certain level or you got set on fire. It was a good way to improve and I did rapidly. As I write this, I’m realizing there is a bigger topic about my experience with this instrument that I would love to expound upon. Anyway, in high school my friends started making music and I was asked to play with them. I think our first gig was at an event called “The Block Party” which went great, even though I awkwardly got caught in the curtain.

In it’s early incarnation this collaboration was mostly Andrew coming up with a melody and Dave writing the lyrics but he definitely contributed musically as well. As we got older and gained members (shout out to Luke and Curtis) our process didn’t change that much. Dave would occasionally have a vibe or sound that he wanted to explore but Andrew still pretty much came up with a majority of the melodies. Obviously, others were welcome to come up with ideas and to a point they (not me, I suck at writing music) did. It was a system that worked for a long time. Andrew, Luke and Curtis would come up with something and I would play the drums to it, trying my best not to come up with something terribly boring. Chocolate Milk/Halfro didn’t really get anywhere but we had a lot fun and made good music that I still stand behind. We’re SUPER inactive now but our last project, released in 2014 still holds up: https://halfromusic.bandcamp.com/releases.

The band I’m in now is Flounder Warehouse and while a majority of our music was already written, there is a good amount of collaboration. The past drummer was super involved in the music making process and produced some incredibly cool ideas. It makes the music fun to play because there are decisions built into the drum parts that I would never come up. What happens now is that our singer, Seann, is incredibly flexible while having a pretty clear vision of the goal. She’s dope and let’s Luke (same bass player) and I have input on old songs to keep them fresh. When writing new music, she comes up with a melody and maybe a few words but then as a group we fill out the rest of the song. Seann has a predictable unpredictability to her song writing and it is fun to come up fitting parts that still reflect each of us. Even though it has morphed since this performance, here is an example of a song that was created since I’ve joined the band:

Making music is great and performing it is even better. I don’t really play an instrument that can survive on its own so collaborating with other musicians is definitely needed. Music is one of the most powerful things ever created and bringing people together to express themselves is absolutely beautiful.

via Daily Prompt: Collaboration

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