May 2, 2010

The Bongo and Steel Drum Band is here to ruin your walk in the park.

Yesterday, I was supposed to play at a benefit concert in the park in the afternoon after a morning already occupied by taking the SAT (again). I'd have to say that the Scholastic Aptitude Test went rather well, which one could only hope so after taking it twice, but that is beside the point. The real events were supposed to start during early afternoon. Our band's plans for the day had already been scaled down due to an absent rhythm guitarist and a bassist whose bass playing was excellent, but was unable to sing because of sickness. Then, the only other voice in the group had to take a rain check, claiming illness and allergies. At this point, we had to call it quits and cancel the gig. It was clear that hanging around in the park and watching the other bands play would have to be a sufficient compromise.
At loose ends, I decided to go hang out with some friends who were, amusingly enough, working to raise money and awareness for a different charity just across the street from diamond park. A great many cool kids are in their church's youth group. Somehow, one of them materialized later that night with a rather wonderful steel drum that he claims to play in his school's steel drum band (I still don't believe it). The other thing that made me quite happy was that for some reason somebody produced a very entertaining basket of miscellaneous percussion instruments. Now I must admit that a "drum circle" with a bunch of Unitarians who rarely go south of the border and know little about grooving tends not to be extremely successful (sorry guys, you know I still love you). But steel drum jamming, on the other hand, is a unique experience. Playing some out-of-tune bongos to a funky beat with some sweet steel drum (and intermittent cowbell) late at night while no doubt annoying any passerby is an opportunity every aspiring musician should have. Too bad they are quite expensive, otherwise a steel drum would be an excellent addition to my basement equipment and musical repertoire. Anyways, that's how I spent my Saturday, which was, I must admit, more than I do on an average Saturday. Let's keep on jamming!

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