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Saturday, October 22, 2016

Ten Years Old


You know, the drummer was only 10 years old in that video. Not 10 years old like 10 years and 364 days, either. He was 10.

He's not 10 any more. He's gotten big for his age, so no one gets the extra frisson that they got when you could only see the top of his head behind the drums. He looks older than his 13 years now. He plays even better, but he's always been good.

I said it at the time, and upon reflection, I'll say it again: He was the best 10-year-old drummer in the world. I have no idea why the world wasn't particularly interested in him or his brother. They were rara avises, man. He was playing for folding money, for hours at a time, when he was 10. Hell, I think big brother was only 17 at the time. He was performing live with only a 10-year-old drummer to back him up. I ask again, why did the world not care about them much? I still don't get it. This video has 800 views. If they had stepped on a rake while recording it with their phone held vertically, it would have gotten 800,000. Ah well, that's the way of the world, and we must live in it.

You might not notice it, but he was exhausted when this song was filmed. It was fairly late at night. My kids were supposed to play in the afternoon, but the gig got postponed over and over because of monsoon rains. Biblical rain. We go to music jobs early, because I've taught my children to act professionally right from the get-go. We sat in our van, listening to drops like dinner plates hammer the roof, ate our bag lunches, and waited. The job kept getting put off. The nice people who hired us offered to pay us and send us home, but we said we'd signed up to do a job, and we'd do it. We waited some more, and then drove to a local fast-food restaurant, sat in the van, and ate that. Then we waited some more. The kids didn't play until 8 hours after we left our house.

The crowd was really enthusiastic and pleasant. They were sophisticates. They were art college students from New York City. They were pleasantly surprised that my older son had a repertoire of hipster-compliant songs like this one to play. Their enthusiasm turned into an extra hour of performance.

Watch the little man. His arms are like lead. He's been playing for two hours straight. He was waiting in a car for eight more before that. This was the latest he'd ever been awake, never mind playing. Watch his eyes at the one-minute-and-twenty-five-second mark.

That's my boy.

8 comments:

Casey Klahn said...

I'm a fan of GS. Any talent in the young is for me a thrill to see. If it weren't for the enjoyment of talented youth, I'd be a grumpy old man.

If he was that committed to this gig, I'd say going to the next one was probably a challenge! He could give a seminar on self-discipline among youth. It'd be the only one, and therefore he could clean up with it.

Best wishes.

julie said...

Your kids are amazing. If the world doesn't see it, part of the issue is probably because they are real. Not autotuned, not CGI, not snarky or sarcaustic enough, and there's no GoPro in slowmo from the vantage point of the drumstick. Plus they are boys who are boys, so there's no alphabet soup angle to bring in all the "allies" who would break out in embarrassing raptures about how special and creative they are - even if everything else about them was exactly the same.

Just a couple of kids putting on a great show fueled by passion and hard work. Ironically, that is one of the hardest things to market these days.

Johnny Glendale said...

I think Julie (above) hit the nail on the head. Sometime in the last decade, passion, hard work, creativity, and quality have become commodities, with price point the sole determinant. Schadenfreude sells, baby; please distract me from my own ennui. (Extra credit for putting those two five-dollar words in one sentence?)

vanderleun said...

"They were art college students from New York City. "

They were not worthy.
They were not worthy.
They were not worthy.

Senor Grampa said...

Your sons are able to 'man up'at a level that is no longer much recognized by our society,let alone celebrated. They're a pleasure to hear, because they've put in the effort, done the work,and developed the skills. And have heart.

Sam L. said...

Part of it is being form the "middle of nowhere". "Rumford Ramblers" won't work; sounds like a folk group. Say, is the Heir attracting groupies, or the Spare?

Thud said...

That's one seriously good lad.

Gary McMichael said...

Gotta say - the kids do jam, but that's one room packed full of can't dance.