Thursday, 21 June 2012


I didn't know this kid but from the first time I saw him something about him rubbed me the wrong way. He was short in stature, baby faced, and always dressed to the nines in the freshest break dance gear. From what I remember he always seemed to have a lot of girls around him and he hung out with the "popular crowd" Despite being vertically challenged he definitely made up for it by having very large amounts of confidence radiating from him. I was convinced he had "small man syndrome" and was trying to make up for it by being so cocky.

I already didn't like this kid for those reasons but then more of them were laid upon me. Back at the breakdancing event he was actually the kid who pulled off the head spin. I guess he had a right to be cocky but inside i believe I was jealous that he could break dance better than me. Another reason to dislike him. When I went to the drum tryouts that fateful day he was the first kid in line and he even had his own drum sticks, which he was using to create beats off of the wall and lockers. Another reason to dislike him. The first day of grade 7 there he was again, in my the drummer of the to steal my thunder again...another reason to dislike him.

Now here I was at a crossroads, continue being a hater and not learn to play the drums, or swallow my pride and learn how to play the drums. I decided to be a bigger man and choose option B. The next day I went and sat at a table in class where him and some other kids were sitting. They were checking out a book on horror movie special fx so naturally I jumped right into the conversation. This kid was also a fan of gore flicks so the convo just naturally unfolded, and low and behold this kid was actually pretty cool. We hit it off quite well then I unveiled my master plan by telling him what the teacher said about needing a back up drummer. He eagerly agreed without hesitation and the seed was planted. I thanked him graciously and even added his name to my gratitudes, it was the first time i had ever spoken it...."Ryan"

Ryan circa 88/89

Before I knew we were on the kit and he taught me to play a simple beat. Kick snair kick snair and the 1,2,3,4 on the hi hat. I got the hang of it pretty quickly and quicker then you could say "james brown" I was playing the beat from "funky drummer" I was amazed how rapidly I learned the basics of drumming and commenced on learning the songs we were playing in class. I can't remember them all but one of them was definitely "Let's go band" I also couldn't thank my new found friend Ryan enough for teaching me how to play, which would be another fundamental factor in shaping my life for the years to come.

The teacher decided for my test I was to play all 3 songs with the entire class! I was nervous as hell but managed to pull it off with only one minor slip up. The teach was impressed with me and she was grinning ear to ear. The spot as back up drummer was mine even though I'd still be playing the alto sax on a daily basis. Whenever we had free time in class however I was always on the kit with Ryan furthering my skills. We went on to be friends for quite a few years and he even ended up the drummer in my first highschool band, but that's another story for another blog somewhere down the road...

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