What's up, everybody? Every year it seems like winter is rolling along and then one morning I wake up and "boom" it's Spring. It's like all of the flowers and trees and grass have a secret meeting and decide to bloom and grow the next day. What was kind of dried up and brown on Friday night is magically full, green, lush and blossoming on Saturday morning and we are firmly and officially enjoying Spring. The bees wake up and buzz around happily and the birds chirp their songs well into the night.
Anyhow, it seems like musically, I go through the same kind of thing. Or, at least feels like my perspective towards drumming kind of has a similar cycle. It seems like sometimes I go through a dry season of going through the motions. I will try to really write drum parts that serve the music, but maybe the parts lack that little "something" that makes me feel excited about the part. Or maybe in rehearsals I just lack that energy that sparks killer ideas... for seemingly no reason. It's just, I don't know.... uninspired. The thing is, it's not like during those times I am isolating myself from the things that normally inspire me. I am still checking out new bands and reading piles of my favorite drum publications and watching drum videos. But, those things don't seem to translate into inspiration in the practice room.
Then, suddenly, I will wake up one morning bursting with new ideas. I literally can't wait to get behind the drum set to work out a new groove or concept or whatever that's been marinating in my brain. Or maybe I am antsy all day in anticipation for rehearsal that night to play a batch of new songs with my new fresh perspective that has seemed to blossom overnight for no apparent reason.
I think, on some level, all artists go through this cycle. We have spells of kinda "doing what we do" and then we come out on the other end raring to go and ready to "kill it". I think that the more we grow as musicians and the more experience we gain, the better we become at gracefully fulfilling our respective rolls and responsibilities within the music, regardless of the struggles we may be having with our own creativity.
It's funny. I think we have all had those shows where we play all of our parts right and there are no major train wrecks, but something about it just felt dry. Then someone after the show comes up to you and tells you how much they enjoyed your playing and you think to yourself "Man, I wish they had seen the show LAST week... now THAT was a great show". It's a matter of perspective. We never know what may inspire someone else even if we are not feeling it that particular night. The important thing is to play that show with just as much integrity and to know that "this too shall pass". Spring will come.