(top image by eclectech)
Is it true that chicks dig bad boys, and especially bad boys in rock bands? And is it true that chicks are really, really, really into bad boy drummer-types in big bad rocking bands? Well, true or not, my brother-in-law recently bought himself a drum set. I suspect it is a case of early on-set mid-life crisis. Any way, he bought the drum set and signed up for some formal classes to learn to play the drums.
When we meet up from time to time, he tries to show me some of the beats and drum sequences that he has learned. I have no patience with the discipline that is needed to learn new things like playing drums. Instead I rely on my natural inclination to music and after learning the basics, pretty much play by ear ……….. and I am pretty decent at it too, even if I say so myself. So each time, he will show off what he has learned and I will show off what I just made up. I know, silly. But it kind of fed both our egoes.
Then his seven year old son, G, got into the act and started attending the same classes as his dad. Lo and behold, G was playing better than his old man! G does not have a natural flair for music but he is very capable and was technically superior to both of us and for awhile, G held center-stage during our jam sessions. But the family saga was not yet over. G’s younger 5 year old brother, R, got interested watching his older brother play and so he picked up the drumsticks and with no formal training whatsoever, copied his brother’s beats. And R, was a real surprise cause, he plays with the best natural rhythm of us all.
Despite nursing a bruised ego, my brother-in-law at least had the soothing balm of fatherly pride in his two kids. He videoed them in action on the drum set to show off to relatives. As it is the way these days, it was not long before doting dad got the idea to put one of the video’s up on to Youtube to show the world his talented offspring. He put up a particularly good video of R playing the drums in his pajamas. He was really rocking, playing the beat and doing a drumroll. R didn’t miss a beat even though he had to pull up his falling pajama trousers a couple of times during the act. He entitled it “5 year old R plays drums”.
My brother-in-law was full of expectation. He imagined the video clip going viral with praises and comments flowing in, “Oh how cute?” or “Boy genius” or “Amazing” or “Can I adopt him?” or even, “Hi I would like to sign a recording deal with this musical prodigy!”
So imagine his surprise that when we checked the status of the video a few days later, there were only two views of the video and only one “like”. (Later, doting father confessed that he had “liked” the video to get the ball rolling). Curious at the poor response, we tried to do a google search to locate the video and made two surprising discoveries. Discovery number one is that there are a lot of videos of drummers called “R” – so we could not find our video and discovery number two was that there were a lot of kids who played a whole lot better and at an earlier age.
One such discovery was Howard Wong – shown in the video below when he was just three years old (he is 6 this year). When we showed the video to G, all he could say was “what…? How? Is this real? How…did he do it?”
So excuse us, we have to go practice some more before we dare show our faces on Youtube again but in the meantime, ever the patron of the arts, the Lone Grey Squirrel presents …………three year old Howard Wong. (Oh and he’s Malaysian! At about 2.30 mark in the video, Howard really takes off on the cute factor)
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