Drumming has certainly made an impact on my life over the years, but more so for the last few months. April started very busy with teaching and having to complete a lot of Music and GCSE deadlines. This has been a new experience for me, writing out tracks and charts for their performance and ensemble pieces. They then had to be sent to the examination Board for assessment. To be honest, I felt like a sixteen year old waiting for my own results. Thankfully, my head of music is very happy with what I have done, but ultimately the students are pleased with their own work. I guess we’ll just have to wait to find out whether they agree with my markings.
Practice is a huge part for any musician, but during the busy teaching weeks I was practising like mad due to some forthcoming clinics. Back in February I was asked if I would like to be involved in a clinic tour during April. Of course I said yes and immediately started a quite intense practice schedule. I was to perform with Paul Hose and Bob Hirons. The clinic tour was comprising of three dates across the UK. Tuesday 16th April in Halifax, Wednesday 17th in Nottingham and Thursday 18th in Kettering.
Being that I have attended many clinics myself, I had a good idea of what people would expect, but was that really my forte? Most of the artists that I have been to see have been quite high profile and have some kind of book published, so I felt that I should really bring something else to the table. You would have read in previous blogs about the style of music I play, it mostly equates to Rockabilly and Blues, but would this be an interest to the average drummer? I’m always in contact with my friend over the pond in Canada, so I asked if it was possible to have his recent album I played on, to be mixed with the drums removed. Thanks to Cory at Sound Studio in Edmonton, this was easier than I thought. I started each show by explaining the history of the basic Rock groove we play today, asking the question- What was the first Rock song? This created quite a discussion, can I just add, that I’m not totally sure myself, although I do strongly feel that Lucille from Little Richard could be a contender. So after explaining and demonstrating early shuffle patterns and straight rockabilly two-beat grooves, I soon relaxed and enjoyed each evening. I was very surprised and encouraged by the interest it created. Although, I didn’t have a book for sale, the Canadian CD Cruisin’ went down very well. I performed three songs from this album. Each performance I did lasted for at least half an hour, but once comfortable, I could have been up there all night.
My colleagues also did blinding sets each night and without their support, I would have never had the chance to experience these clinics. I’d like to thank Paul & Rob for inviting me on this tour, without them, this tour would have not been possible. I’m sure that’ll we will be working together again very soon.
Thanks for reading