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Mr Pigglesworth Learns The Drums

Updated: Mar 4

Whilst aspirations of flying are always prominent, there is a long ago held dream that Mr Pigglesworth has decided to embrace that is learning the drums. A little dabbling was to be had when he was younger, and now he has the time and the inclination to do more with this. So a purchase of the drum kit (we won't tell him that he forgot the kick drum), some sticks and a space in the house and Mr Pigglesworth is away. Except, the co-ordination is not quite as he remembers. Everything feels like it's a little slower and the beats don't quite seem to work in the way that he had anticipated. Perhaps more practice will see him right, sticking with those steady beats and seeing what might come about. Hmmm. Those rockstar dreams are feeling a little further away than he had thought and this is all feeling like an endeavour that might best have been left as an illusion of what might have been.

What to do next? Mr Pigglesworth was faced with a dilemma. Perhaps his level was not quite to where he had imagined, and perhaps his ability was not as developed to be able to inform his next steps. He needed help! What were the options that he had? Well, thankfully, there was any easy choice to head online and see what wonderful advice was available there. Surely there would be the kind of expert help he would need ready at his fingertips (or trottertips) and he would be back on track in no time. That first video was very entertaining, and he certainly felt inspired but it was a little more complicated than he was ready for so onto the next thing. This one showed the basics, and he knew this already. And here was a video for how he could improve his posture. And here was a video for how he could get better abdominal muscles. And here was a video for what happens when you use tomato sauce to clean a pan. And here was a video for... oh oh.

The main thing was that Mr Pigglesworth had seen some ideas to try and back to the drum kit he went. Boom Boom Cah, Boom Boom Cah. He'd been playing for two minutes and mastered "We Will Rock You". This was a good start. Now to add the hi hat. Tss Tss Boom Cah Boom. Nope, that wasn't right. Let's try again. Cah Boom Tss Boom. Nope, that wasn't it either. Maybe if he went back and watched that video again. "Drum beats for beginners" sounded promising and again, it seemed so simple. Time for some keen observation to see what was going on. He watched video after video and they all seemed so simple. Slowly these videos moved into more advanced (and interesting) techniques that still seemed achievable. This one showed how to do drum fills, then drum solos then ... ahh, not again.

This clearly wasn't working. Mr Pigglesworth had spent three hours going down the online wormhole and that rockstar dream was slipping further and further away. Maybe what he needed now was to simply spend time on the drum kit, banging away and that it was just a matter of time before it all clicked again. So away he banged, minutes turned into multiple minutes, small frustrations grew into larger frustrations until he was abruptly interrupted by his stick hitting the rim of a drum and flying (huh!) across the room. He heaved a large sigh of discontent, gathered up the stick and further resolved his determination to do better. After all, doesn't it take 10,000 hours to become an expert? He was only a couple of hours into his journey, surely more time was the answer. More time brought more frustration, more frustration brought more flying sticks and more flying sticks brought dents in the wall. This was not working.

Perhaps it was time to seek help, except, this would mean that there would be a cost to developing himself further and he had been convinced that he could do this himself. It might be a little hit to the ego (asking for help when you are an adult...) and a hit to the wallet, but how much did he really want this? To hit the drums with the precision and ability that he desired would be worth it. It was time to take the next step, it was time to admit that someone else might hold the knowledge that would help him develop. Mr Pigglesworth was in. Once again, Mr Pigglesworth headed online, and was confronted with resources that promised so much if he signed up to this website, or that website. He knew he needed first hand experience with the instructor and need this to happen in person.

You see, Mr Pigglesworth knew that he needed to start with knowledge, knowledge of how to play the drums but he had run into a problem. The knowledge he needed seemed to be the knowledge that he would gain after he had found the knowledge he needed. Essentially, to know how to improve at the drums, you need to have the knowledge the comes from playing the drums in order to see improvement. Having someone else who was able to provide insight into the steps and process was very much necessary, both for himself and those wonderfully supportive (but diminishing) people around him. A focus on how to hold the sticks, how to break down a beat to develop the right feel, understanding when to play fills and simple variations that can be made to develop the repertoire of beats. Instant feedback and guidance was the key.

The lessons began and Mr Pigglesworth was making progress. He could hear it, feel it, and most importantly others around him could hear it (I mean it's a drum kit, they're pretty hard to ignore). Progress was still slower than he hoped, but the rhythm and timing was coming together. The co-ordination was becoming more natural and Mr Pigglesworth could feel the glow of the lights and the roar of the crowd coming alive. He was very much the solo pigstar and it was happening for him.

Now, was he ready to play with others?

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