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Are you a drummer?
Anyone who plays can be called a player. Not everyone who drums is a drummer. I have met players who play drums, and even some with great chops and technique, who just don’t play with their heart. Conversely, I have spent periods in my life without playing drums for months, or even years - but I will always be a drummer. The difference is very subtle, but very significant.
There is always some kind of rhythym in my head. If my fingers aren’t taping on a desk, or my foot isn’t taping on the floor, then my teeth are likely chattering some kind of pattern just to keep the energy flowing. As a kid, I was always told to sit still, stop figiting, knock off the tapping, etc., and I have played drums since I was very young. I didn’t learn what an integral part drumming was in my personality, until - for the first time in my life - I stopped playing for several years. Even when my kit was stacked up in cases in the garage, and I hadn’t held a pair of sticks for years, I still thought and behaved rhythmically. Sometimes the rhythms are slow and easy, and roll like a wave. Other times they’re quick and snappy, and keep me hoping when I need to keep an up-tempo activity moving. There is always some kind of a beat, a pattern, or a pulse pumping through me, and from me.
For many years, I did not realize that everyone else does not have this same constant, or at least consistent rhythm in their head, and in their life, that I do. Just about all of the friends through much of my life were players of some kind, and so there was always some kind of music either playing, or being sung, hummed, or tapped. I just assumed that everyone heard or felt some kind of rhythm the same way I do. After talking with friends and acquaintances, I eventually learned that some people just don’t hear anything, unless there’s something playing in the background. Wow!
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