I have three songs in the works. All of them need lyrics and vocals. Two also need drums.
One of them turned out to be pretty terrible so I shitcanned it and now I have two songs in the works. One only has a single verse of lyrics to complete, which I’m just being completely lazy with, and the other needs a full set of lyrics and drums so near the end of July I recorded the drums.
A few days later, I realized that the drumming for the outro is little off everything else so now I have to redo all of the guitars.
“Wait,” you ask, “why re-record all the guitar parts? Why don’t you just re-record the drums?”
Well, you see, I recorded the drum parts, gave it a quick listen and was happy at the time. Then I sold my drums.
Yup. I sold my drum kit literally three days after I laid down those tracks.
Well, basically, I’m starting to downsize. We’re going to be rearranging rooms in our house in the coming months and the major lift is moving one of our kids bedrooms downstairs and moving the “office” upstairs. With the upstairs room being much smaller, there would simply be no room for a drum set.
I toyed with the idea of maybe replacing the kit with an electric set but gave up on that pretty quick. While the upstairs room is big enough for two large desks there is no room for drum kit of any size, even if it was the only thing in the room. Also, decent electronic kits are prohibitively expensive, even on the second hand market.
This decision was very easy considering that I just didn’t play the drums enough to justify keeping a huge kit anymore. It was a hobby I tripped into a few years ago when someone gave me a kit for zero dollars. Back then I was stoked, paid for some lessons, and got just decent enough that I bought a good, second hand, mid-range kit and gifted the old one to a neighbour. But in the past two years I’ve played four maybe five times, at most. It just sits there, taking up space until I decide to bash around for an hour. I hated seeing it sit there and would much rather it go to someone who will actually play it.
So I told myself I’d finish up the drum tracks for this last tune, sell the kit and then use the money to get myself something I’ve never had, but always wanted: A Really Nice Acoustic Guitar®™.
And I did just that.
When it comes to acoustic guitars, I had a cheap Yamaha 6 string in the early 90’s, and a cheap Yamaha 12 string in the late 90’s. I ended up trading that one for a cheap bass so I could audition for, and subsequently join a local, alternative rock band back in 1999 (which is a story in itself).
Since then? The only acoustic I’ve owned is my my beat up, nylon string, thrift store junker guitar that is hard to play and probably isn’t worth the hook it’s hanging on. 1
Once the drums sold, I spent some time trying various guitars until I fell in love with the Ovation and bought it with the proceeds.
So now I have an acoustic, and electric, a bass, and a classical. My bases are covered. Guitar has always been my main love and I’m going to enjoy getting my focus back on track with it.
While this appears to be nothing more than showing off my new guitar (which is not really wrong) what it’s really about is the idea of letting things go.
I’m not one to enjoy having lots of things. I’m not a collector by any means and I believe that in order to bring something new into the house then something of at least equal value should go. Especially when it comes to hobbies. For me music is fun. It’s one of my escapes. It’s about strumming strings and writing songs, not buying every single guitar or piece of gear I lay my eyes on.
I do like stuff. I just don’t dig an overabundance of stuff. I don’t like owning something just for the sake of owning it. I’m very not down with consumerist culture. I loath shopping. Like, I fucking loath it. Don’t come shopping with me of you want to browse 2; I know what I’m there for and I get in and out as quickly as possible and that’s that.
As I’ve mentioned here and there in this blog, I enjoy working with what I already own. When I was younger, I did my best work when I was forced to use what I had on hand. As time moved on and I had the means to get more equipment and/or software, I found myself in ruts; spending more time finding the right things to use rather than getting the most of of what I already had. Once I started cutting back I found creativity returned in a big way.
Adding more space to this chaotic thing we call life is rewarding in so many ways. Enjoying what you have. Enjoy the people you love. Enjoy your one crazy life.
After all, it’s not the instrument that makes the music. It’s the person playing it.
1: I don’t give a shit what it looks like. It sounds really, really good.
2: Thrift stores do not count as “shopping”. I loves me some thrifting.