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composer + artist • she/her • loves drums • advocate for emotional literacy in music • meep • EN/FR OK

Annette Singh @Troisnyx

30, Female

Music Director

Lancashire, UK

Joined on 6/26/11

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Percussion training GO! and other stories

Posted by Troisnyx - February 27th, 2014

First off, thanks for the pointers and support you've given me in the last post. I managed to borrow those timpani mallets today, and hand speed training is a GO.

* * *

There's something I wanted to share with all of you... it's not a song, but rather, what I experienced recently -- in fact, just a few days ago.

In addition to the bodhráns and the guitar I have in my possession, Seán and I unearthed a few more instruments that had not been played for yonks -- two accordions, a violin, a tin whistle and a MIDI keyboard. Nearly all of them had fallen out of tune, but I just wanted to draw a sound out of them. I picked up the violin and its bow, and began drawing it over just one string, and I just got lost in the motions of it.

"You'd make a good violinist, you," I was told.

I was deeply moved. That may have been true, but when contemplating a second instrument for me to learn when I was 12 years old, the common choices were the violin and the flute -- and I didn't want to play what everyone else played. I didn't want to fit a 'mould'. My favourite instrument was the same then as it is now -- the drum. I forewent the violin and the flute, knowing full well that I wanted to be my own person.

But that day, as I drew the bow over that old violin, there grew in me a desire to breathe life into any instrument I found... regardless of what it was. I wanted to play something. I still want to play something. I just don't know what...

I don't know if my dream of becoming a multi-instrumentalist will ever be achieved. But that little incident, I felt, was beautiful. I don't quite know how else to express it.


Your little story is fairly similar to mine, actually. I began taking piano courses at a young age, and became fairly good at it. I had a good teacher, which was a retired professor from the conservatory, and essentially taught me most of the musical knowledge I had until I reached college, which is saying a lot.

Unfortunately, once I reached secondary school, piano was not offered in band class, so I had to change to another instrument. I had to pick between sax, trumpet and percussion. I tried the sax, but I had a hard time producing a sound, and plus I didn't want to play what everybody else wanted to play. I then had to pick between percs and trumpet, but I tried the trumpet first, and just fell in love with the instrument and chose that one before even trying percs. I don't know if I would have taken percs if I had given it a shot, but the idea of one day being able to play what my uncle (world-reknown player) could do had me hooked.

I thought that would be all, but once I hit a certain age, my father decided it was time that he taught me a bit of his art, or congas and djémbé. I didn't think that would de much at first, but once I discovered the world of percussion, I was once again hooked, and almost 10 years later, I couldn't be more thankful! To this day, I'm discovering new instrument I want to learn on a daily basis, and my formal training in almost all types of instruments has helped me tremendously.

So the moral of the story is: Don't be shy to try new things, you might just discover a passion you didn't know you had!

Though I played the viola years ago, I still have an appreciation for music (I'm still biased toward string instruments, the violin family in particular) and musicians. I truly hope you can find that choice that'll make you feel most whole and best, giving you that worthwhile feeling that you long for.

How touching. I learned violin for a while in secondary school but I didn't really commit to it after the melodies I had to learn became a little more complex. It is a beautiful instrument, yes...perhaps I'll revisit it later on in life.

From what I've heard of your musical works, I thought you were both a pianist and a drummer. So, aren't you considered a multi-instrumentalist already?

Last point: terrific photo revamp there! Loving the warm filter and that determined expression as you clutch those timpani mallets, haha. :D


Heh heh- I own quite a nice variety of instruments. Once I settle into my own apartment (this autumn, perhaps?) I'll finally be able to unpack them and get back to the madness that enveloped me so long ago.

My main instrument is the tinwhistle, partly because I love the sound, and partly because nobody around me plays the tinwhistle. But, despite my desire to be different, my brother-in-law's piano has claimed a lot of my free time. :D It is nice to be able to play a handful of notes at once.

The violin can be very very emotional and beautiful sounding. It's a pain to learn, though. At least for me it is.

Good Luck with the new Instrument, and consider following up with the Violin. Even if something is commonly done, that doesn't mean you won't have a special Aptitude for it all the same, and if you have one, you certainly aren't fitting into a Mould, but rather moulding the Instrument, however common, and creating with it. Perhaps you might find something in yourself that you never knew was there.

Like the time I picked up my grandfather's bass recorder. :)

I've been steadily on the route to being a multi-instrumentalist since then. I now play about half a dozen instruments (or can at least pretend to). If you have the time (and money, although there are used instruments in great condition on ebay and in stores that are affordable), it's worth it imho. :)