The Little (Fickle) Drummer Boy

When I was a kid, I used to listen to the teenager who lived on the corner playing his drums.

To my adolescent ears, Ray Hotchkiss sounded accomplished, but he probably wasn’t the next Charlie Watts–just a teenager good enough to create and maintain a rhythm.

After hearing Ray a few times and seeing Ringo Starr with The Beatles on the Ed Sullivan Show, I begged my mom for a drum kit, and after bugging her enough, she sent me to a drum instructor and bought me a drum pad and sticks.

She bought me a drum kit soon after, but in reflection, I think she jumped the gun on that purchase; after receiving the set, I learned a simple bass, snare, and cymbal rhythm, which must have encouraged both my mom and me, but that modest rhythm was as far as I got.

These days, whenever I see a little kid on YouTube playing very proficiently, I can’t help but wish I would have stuck with it; maybe I could have played like that kid in a few years, perhaps I could have played like Ray Hotchkiss by the time I was in High School, and maybe I even could have joined a band.

The drumming stopped from Ray’s house soon after I had quit, and now 50 years later, I wonder if he was as fickle as I was.

9 thoughts on “The Little (Fickle) Drummer Boy

  1. Carolyn aka Mom

    That’s many maybes…….I like to think you would have made a wild & crazy percussionist! When I gave you acting lessons your teacher thought you should have voice training she thought that is where you shined.


  2. clark

    hats off to anyone who get get even “…a simple bass, snare, and cymbal rhythm” to happen more than once. of all the instruments, drums have always struck me as being in the ‘nfw class of musical skills’

    Welcome to Sixville.

    Liked by 2 people


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