09 April 2008

Make a Joyful Noise

About a month or so ago, Mark asked me if I would be interested in joining one of the many pipe and drum corps that abound around the Irish Riviera. I said, "Yes." -- not really thinking that he'd pursue it as he's not the most musically inclined person I know.

A few weeks ago, a package showed up at our door - inside were two sets of drumsticks and two drum pads. Yep, he decided to go through with it after all. So last night we went out to Manasquan for drum lessons and to meet the others in the band.

We arrived early, before any of the other drummers, so I got to meet a few pipers - including one instructor who (like me!) played clarinet previously. I asked how difficult the pipes were - only nine notes. Easy-peasy after the bajillion or so on a clarinet. I listened to a couple of the (pipe) students practice and read the music over their shoulder. ('Amazing Grace' - one of the most annoying songs. Ever.)

The drum master/instructor showed up and Mark and I started our lessons. I was really hesitant about this from the get-go as percussion has never been my forte; unless you count the triangle. (Ed Grimley - you're my percussion hero!) I struggled with the grip on the drumsticks and after about 20 minutes of frustration, I packed them up and watched Mark play. Didn't think drums were going to be my thing and I was right. (Like holding knitting needles, the grip on the drumsticks was not a natural thing for me so I cut my losses early.)

If I'm going to do this pipe and drum thing, I'll play a melodic instrument -- and read music that I can understand. (I did look to make sure the pipe music was written in treble clef -- part of the reason I suck at piano is that I have great difficulty reading bass clef music. Hence why I sucked at cello.) So I'm off to order me a chanter today so that it'll arrive before next week's session. And if it doesn't I'll go and listen again and support Mark's drumming efforts.

While he might not be the best drummer (yet), it's much more tolerable than his efforts at playing the tin whistle.

1 comment:

The Cartoonist's Wife said...

Okay, okay -- a joke!

Q. Why do bagpipers walk while they play?

A. To try to get away from that sound!