Our drummer quit playing. Mannn........

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Our drummer quit playing. Mannn........

Postby jeffl » Wed Feb 16, 2011 4:18 pm

Our drummer called me yesterday to tell me that he quit... not just quit us, but quit playing altogether. He's been one of my best brothers for about 35 years. He got picked up on the way home from our weekly jam two weeks ago, and just didn't show last week, so we were concerned about him. He'd been drinking more and more the last few months, and he tested .09 after our jam. They didn't ticket him at all, but they towed his truck and took him downtown to call his wife for a ride home.
So, he decided that he had issues that he hadn't been dealing with, and he figured that since he's about 66 years old and still having issues with alcohol that he oughta wake up and change something.

He's not the first guy to figure out that the alcohol and drugs in the music scene can be a killer for anybody who can't control themselves. It's sad though. He was the most exuberant member of our group; a really good drummer, and a very good singer. I'll miss him as a friend too, 'cuz he's a hard guy to hook up with for visits.

We've got a good drummer who's been waitin' to get in, but he's not as good, and doesn't sing.
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Re: Our drummer quit playing. Mannn........

Postby Buffalo_Bill » Wed Feb 16, 2011 4:47 pm

Friends who still get stoned and drunk, are one of the biggest turn offs for me. :roll:
My dread of working with stoners, is the whole reason I just can't call up musicians I don't know.
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Re: Our drummer quit playing. Mannn........

Postby jeffl » Wed Feb 16, 2011 5:14 pm

Buffalo_Bill wrote:Friends who still get stoned and drunk, are one of the biggest turn offs for me. :roll:
My dread of working with stoners, is the whole reason I just can't call up musicians I don't know.
Bill

Yeah, well that IS a problem. All of us use the substances, but we've had an unwritten rule that the music comes first and nobody should be gettin' drunk or too high. I'm the only one who has to drive a distance to play, but I'm not the only one who counts their drinks. Everybody's there to improve their skills, so it is an important issue that had been handled pretty well until John apparently let some problems in his personal life manifest themselves in excessive drinking. One of our guys had even been given permission by John to call attention to any excessive use on his part. We shoulda nipped it in the bud back then. Up until then, I don't think anybody coming into our music area would know that there's drinking or smoking going on, but there's no doubt that it's caused a problem for one guy, and I guess that's a problem for everybody.

I've already had email discussions with a couple of the guys about this being a heads up about making sure that we all moderate. (moderation in eating and drinking is considered a prime upper midwest U.S. Norwegian/Lutheran ethic. :) )
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Re: Our drummer quit playing. Mannn........

Postby maxx england » Thu Feb 17, 2011 11:02 am

Well, at least he's recognised it. He may well come back to you. The only problem then is what you do about him wanting to come back and anybody who steps in as a replacement. Ain't life grand?
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Re: Our drummer quit playing. Mannn........

Postby jeffl » Thu Feb 17, 2011 4:36 pm

We don't need to replace him right away; we've got a guy who can sit in until we're sure that the old guy ain't coming back. We'll give him a few weeks.
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Re: Our drummer quit playing. Mannn........

Postby jbone1 » Thu Jul 14, 2011 12:45 pm

it's never too late if he wants to improve his condition. i recently stopped smoking after 35 years, at age 56. my journey with alcohol ended in the late 80's, as did the drug adventures.
there does come a time when one either gets priorities straight or they potentially kill one. he's lucky to have not gotten a dui. it's a good wakeup call. i wish him success and i hope he can find his way to both a better life and back to you guys he's played with for such a long time.
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Re: Our drummer quit playing. Mannn........

Postby jeffl » Thu Jul 14, 2011 2:54 pm

I don't expect to see him back at any time, but that's fine. I'm sure he'll re-direct his energies towards his other artistic pursuits. He has a degree in painting & illustration from one of the two major art schools in Minneapolis, Mn., and he's a good sculptor and carpenter as well, so this change will probably refresh his life.
We still haven't replaced him permanently, but we've been getting by with guys sittin' in with us. I've got a good friend who's a helluva drummer that I've been tryin' to talk into comin' on with us, but he's having his own battles with alcohol and depression and is a little scared to jump back into the music world.
I'm amazed at how many guys my age (I just turned 60) are having marital issues, and drug or alcohol problems.. I'm just happy to have a group of guys to play with regularly, and I'm glad my marriage is still goin' strong after 28 yrs.
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Re: Our drummer quit playing. Mannn........

Postby allanlummox » Thu Jul 14, 2011 3:41 pm

It's a rough balancing act. I've lost a few friends to their demons and hungry ghosts and have still more who fight them every day.

It's a hard song to know when to end. Hopefully your friend will pick a good tempo for the next tune on his personal set list.
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