Something Else I Miss
I always wanted to be in a band. Apparently not bad enough to learn an instrument, take vocal lessons, or ask around for like minded people. After teaching myself how to passably play some chords and a few simple melodies, I did partner up with a few friends for some garage like band playing. Only one of us was actually competent. The other two hammered along, trying to keep time and tempo while the third tolerated our attempts, encouraging when he could, waiting when he knew we just had to push through.
A work talent show was the goal. We planned to be deliberately awful. In fact, I thought it would be hilarious if we just stacked the stage with ten guitarists, playing the same three power chords for seven minutes, no solo’s no bridge, no chorus. It would have been confusing and epic; awesome and annoying. Also, it would allow me the thrill of playing in front of people, hiding my lack of ability in a well conceived and executed joke. One we added a drummer, that sort of put an end to the original plan.
Robert, Travis and I practiced once a week, sometimes twice, trying to put together a song that we thought would still get our joke across, but would be interesting and well performed. I practiced my part over and over, trying to hear Roberts (much better) guitar playing and Travis pounding it out on the drums. The closer the talent show came, the more I wanted it to sound good. Another friend of ours, Sean, played a fabulous bass guitar. He agreed to join us and give us a more complete rhythm section. I am sure he thought us ridiculous, our little three minute song, stealing the words from The Music Man, three jumbled parts that hardly went together, but he never said anything mean or insulting, just played along. Another c0-worker, joined us and the five of us practiced a total of three times together before performing.
My favorite moment came three days before the show. We were in my basement, trying to add some dynamics and finishing touches to the song. I had the intro-a four chord pattern that (at the time) I thought was the coolest thing ever. Travis counted me and I began to play. I felt very nervous, though I had played this seventy times already. For some reason, this time felt different. A sense of anticipation hung tight around me. Then after two measures, the rest of the band came in, synced for the first time. The sound was amazing and for a moment, I really felt like I was part of a band. I had chills. I felt powerful.
We played for the talent show. The song sucked. The performance was alright. It was loud and muddy but that was fine.
I really want that feeling again, being a part of a group of people playing music together. I am still a mediocre guitarist, but would love a reason to practice, get better, play again. Anyone feel like starting a band?