1. Don’t get too worked up
As energetic and enthusiastic a drummer may look, I’ve realised that drumming sounds best when the drummer is relaxed. An upcoming drum exam piece has got me frustrated due to its high speed; I’ve been struggling to keep up with the backing track since the beginning. But I discovered that enjoying the song, feeling the beat and “grooving” to the song (who uses groove anyway?) are all keys to playing a song successfully.Stressing over things and getting all worked up will most likely make the situation worse. Frustration never solves anything.
2. Everyone is important
To be honest, many instruments require only the hands (and the brain, obviously). But for the drums, all four limbs are in use and without the legs, the entire beat will be empty. The bass drum plays an essential part in giving the song a backbone, and the hi-hat foot gives the groove some flavour. Legs don’t play a part in most instruments, but a drummer’s legs are his (or her) assets. Value the underdogs; the ones who aren’t always the center of attention, and understand that every person you meet has a part to play in your life.
3. Practice makes perfect
This is pretty self-explanatory. Be it a music instrument, mathematics, a sport, or even cooking, all talent without practice is futile.
4. You are more influential than you think
A drummer doesn’t play chords. He doesn’t play any melody or second voice. Worse, he can hardly produce musical notes. The entire band discusses chords and key changes but the drummer sits there, twirling his drumsticks since he can’t participate in the discussion. The drums are just a bunch of wooden bottomless buckets with skins stretched over the tops, with some pedals and some metal plates. No strings, no tunes, nothing. But when the band starts playing, you are the rhythm. You are the underlying beat, the one who determines the speed. Once the drummer gradually speeds up in the middle of the song, the whole band unconsciously follows. No matter what you do, you actually impact people more than you think. You may be a shy, silent introvert, but any action of yours can change situations, mindsets or even solve problems. You are more influential than you think.
5. Silence is golden
Drummers aren’t just people who know how to play a groove, how to attack at the right places or have perfect timing. They also know when to be quiet. They know that in certain songs, drums aren’t needed. Drums will cloud the song, drums will be just “noise” and drums will overshadow the other musicians. Wanting to show off your skills doesn’t mean making noise all the time. Sometimes silence shows more wisdom than anything.