Learning How to Drum at Age 65 - Fortune

Learning How to Drum at Age 65

When I was 18, I had been drumming for about 10 years. (They say that if you want to be a good drummer, you better have started by your teenage years, or you'll never make it.)

I got a call from my neighbor. He was about 65 years old.

"Jason," he said, "I made a promise to myself when I turned 60 that I was going to do 3 things. Lose 60 pounds. Stop smoking. And learn to play a musical instrument. So far, I've done 2 of those things."

"Which two?" I asked.

"I hear you're a pretty good drummer. Would you like to teach me how to drum?"

(I didn't know what to say. You can't learn drums when you're SIXTY-FIVE! What do I tell him? Well, maybe it'd be best to let him try it, then he can move on to guitar or piano or something if he doesn't like it.)

I've never seen anyone that age take a hobby as seriously as this guy took drumming. A year later, he was pretty proficient, and I cried a little when, after I left for college, I saw a video of him playing live on stage at a concert back home.

I learned way more from him than he did from me. I figure now that I should have been the one paying him for the lesson.

You ain't dead until you decide you're dead.

Author Jason Riggs
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