I Suggest Joining a Band

Join a band. Do it. Make it happen. Find some friends and get rolling. Don’t overthink it, darn it. Make it happen. It’s so much fun.

I grew up playing music as part of a professional family band – as in 9-year-old drumming for full stage productions. It was a time in my life when my family was a bunch of skill practicing fools. Hours a day on instruments and development of various other abilities.

I had drum lessons and organ lessons. I taught myself to play piano in college by sneaking into the school auditorium in the dark and fighting my way into a respectable relationship with bass clef day after day for a year or two. I played trumpet in my school bands. I sang in choir.

I woke up in the night on a regular basis to my brother playing improvisational piano when he came home from nights out with friends or a date.

Creativity was never stifled and always championed in my house. My parents loved those middle of the night bursts of self-expression. As an adult, I’ve continued to play and practice instruments as a stress reliever, creative outlet, and type of meditative exercise. There’s this music zone you can get absorbed in and it’s pretty special.

Once I had kids and career decisions going on – dreams of being a rock star had to fall by the wayside.

A few years ago, a couple long-time media friends and I decided to meet up on a weekly basis and play songs together giving ourselves a regular challenge. We’d agree on the 2-3 songs and, basically, learn them on the fly together. Then, we’d up the pressure to do it decently by playing them as a mini-performance Facebook live at 8p those Wednesday nights. It was a blast. I highly recommend it. We worked on some challenging music! Given that we chose all kinds of music and decided to get serious, we gave ourselves a name calling this band All Over The Map. Screaming Sausage was the first idea, but it wasn’t the ideal direction for us.

We got real and got busy attempting music with more precision. It was good for all of us.

I’m sharing one of the few pictures of us together in studio after a St. Patrick’s Day WJBC radio interview. We’re missing Carrie in this picture – our powerhouse singer.

We have loads of fun when we play together and that’s what a creative life is about.

Two of our members moved away and another diverted to studies.

We have a skeletal crew left and aren’t playing at the moment, but are happily reuniting to play at the Connie Link Theater in Normal, IL this summer. It’ll be a great time. Consider yourself invited. I’ll share the date and time soon.

Musical mojo is something I need more of in my life again.