I always wanted to learn how to play the guitar.

When I was in college I bought an acoustic Fender and enrolled in a class. I was very good at the left brain part – the music reading, the finger placement, but when it came to the right brain stuff – the strumming, the finding of rhythm, I was too high-strung (no pun intended) and control freakish to let myself go.

There is a tribal drummer in all of us. One that beats out the steady tattoo of our hearts. For those of us that will let him, our tribal drummer can make our feet move and our body sway too. Alas, I have forced my drummer into an uncomfortable business suit, and insisted he stay seated at all times.

I have never been one to put up posters of musicians on my walls. I can count the number of concerts I’ve attended on one hand and still have fingers left over. But I did develop a huge crush on a musician once. Huge. It was very cliche of me.

This particular musician was a front man for a rockabilly band. He could play any instrument he could get his hands on, but by far his favorite instrument was the bass. One night he was playing a gig at a local bar and a string broke on his bass guitar right in the middle of a very bass heavy song. Without missing a beat he quickly threw off his bass guitar and embraced his bass cello. The man could wail on cat gut like no one I’ve ever seen.

He played my Fender once. I had no idea my little Fender was capable of producing such beautiful music. I had named her Pandora, because only bad things would happen whenever I opened her box. I stood corrected. Pandora just needed someone more in touch with their tribal drummer.

Years later I still fantasize about mastering the guitar. I watch my children dancing blissfully and enthusiastically with their tribal drummers, and I pray they never stuff their drummers into suits. Everyone knows it’s much more fun to dance naked!

Maybe I can rock the piano.

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  1. Elizabeth_K

    I wanted to ROCK the electric guitar. Then I found out you had to master the acoustic one FIRST. Then my dad bought me one and I played Uptown Girl (sung with a pause between each note: Up. Town. Girl. She’s. Been (etc.)) and then I realized — THIS IS HARD. Then I gave up on musical instruments. I’m counting on my husband’s genes to pass that along …


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