Hilarious, since people like to play piano, but the music itself is hard to learn. My father can play, but I’m better than him! When my first piano teacher played chords on the instrument, it scared me, because now I’m used to them. And you get used to learning a whole bunch of chords at once, like three in one place! So piano has always taken my hands off the controls.
Why are drums a better instrument to learn than guitar?
Drums are my greatest joy, because they’re something you can play all day. Guitar is just a song, you don’t need to learn a set number of chords or patterns. It’d be great to learn drumming, but I’ve been hearing some great drummers lately. A lot of big-time drummers play just drums.
I’ve also heard Michael Anthony – great drummer, great songwriter, great friend – play percussion. He plays more stuff than just drums! Can you imagine playing drums and doing the same stuff with his drummer friend?
Drummers and bass players are so much more flexible than guitar players and drummers. They can play a whole bunch of beats, then switch up and change them all over. They can get it down and get it done. I’m actually a drummer, so that’s why I can switch between bass parts like five different ways. And they just do it so well!
You mentioned “happenstance,” the word you use to describe when a musician just happens to do something right. What is that idea about your life that has led to your passion for the music?
I just happen to have been lucky enough to come in contact with a lot of brilliant musicians who came along late in life. And now they’re still making music, so they have a real good foundation to draw from. And the musicians are also young enough and active enough in their lives that when you see them in concert, it’s very clear that they’re still just playing. I just happened to find myself in their crosshairs.
I guess the thing for me is that I’ve always known how to be a performer. I’m just lucky that it happened in front of a crowd. It’s really simple: if you’re playing, you’re being able to show the audience what you’re doing, and that’s very satisfying.
“Being in a band helps me to know everything about my instrument, like when the tuning is right
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