What’s Worse: Band breakups or marriage splits?

“What is it like being in a band?” My friends always ask me. It’s a lot of fun, but there are some drawbacks as well. I’m in my late twenties, and I’ve been playing music my whole life. It’s become the essence of who I am as a person, and music has a role in nearly every aspect of my life.

I first started playing the piano when I was six years old. My parents bought me a cruddy keyboard that had 28 different sounds, and I loved it! When I was old enough, I took trumpet lessons at school and joined the concert band. After a few years, my interests grew, and I joined the jazz band where I learned how to improvise and play in different keys. My favorite part of playing in the school’s band was the dedication from the group of disciplined students. Having a conductor made it a lot easier for everyone to stay focused and motivated, and the conductor was a seemingly unbiased third party that would address issues within the ensemble. I learned very quickly that balance is essential to succeeding in music.

I’ve been in several bands over the years and play drums now. I like playing drums in different bands because it gives me a creative outlet that is both physical and demanding. The challenge also includes a mental component, and as a drummer, I feel like I have the responsibility to keep the band high in energy and keep all of us in tempo. Sometimes, when the band is fighting, there isn’t an unbiased observer that can independently verify critiques, and people take things personally even when it’s not like that at all.

The most recent band I’ve been playing with got into a creative argument, and decided to take a break. I’d like to think that being on hiatus can feel a little like being separated in a marriage, but according to the Kessler & Solomiany, LLC attorneys, divorce is a pretty intense period of time. It doesn’t help that most of my bandmates are a little tight on money, and the shows we have lined up weren’t going to pay much, if anything. I still do it because I love playing music.

Sometimes when I listen to music, it’s hard for me to relax and just enjoy the beat. I get inspired when I hear beats, and it makes me want to get up and play along. Playing different genres of music doesn’t seem to help either, as I am continually judging different rhythms to analyze the new sounds coming together to make a tune. Don’t get me wrong, I love having this problem. But sometimes, I wish I could enjoy music the way other people enjoy it.

The worst is when you open for a band that you are better than. Music is completely subjective, and it’s tough to support another group that is getting more attention with less talent. My band and I are like a family, and even if we aren’t playing together, we still hang out all the time and catch up. I love those guys, and I’ll be playing music forever.

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