Becoming a Professional Musician: Risk, Failure, Lessons Learned, Risk

SKF NOTE: Maybe other musicians grow by reaching one level of skill, staying at that level for awhile until something takes the musician to the next skill level. That something, in my experience, is usually a combination of listening, developing chops, and playing with other musicians.

Sometimes rising to the next level is scary, and sometimes it means taking a chance in public and failing. This audio clip is me circa 1974 describing one such incident playing drums at a jam session in front of hundreds of people, with a band I really admired.

I wrote about this incident in a December 20, 2014 blog post, My Drum Lession with Max Collie & the Rhythm Aces. I had no idea this audio clip existed until last week. But it includes me describing My Drum Lesson to another musician friend, within days of the incident.

Also, I listened to this audio clip to the day, or within one day, of when I recorded about 43 years ago. What I hear on this clip is a young drummer, about 23 years old, very willing to take risks, to fail, to learn from failure what went wrong and what went write, and to press on to the goal of becoming a better professional drummer.

Also, my New York accent on this tape is long gone, but you can tell, having grown up on Long Island, NY, I had been in Iowa a very, very short time.

Thank you, Cris Worley, for keeping this tape safe and for sending it my way.


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