August 21, 2008

I want to say I was about four years old when I fell in love with music. My memory’s not great, so it could have been anywhere between four and fourteen, but I think it was closer to four. I was hanging out in an old abandoned car factory in South Carolina and I came across a bunch of old bumpers lying on the ground. At that age, I used to walk around with a bunch of sticks in my back pocket in case I ever needed something to throw. When I saw those bumpers, I don’t know what came over me, but I knew that I had to take out a pair of sticks and start banging away.

From the instant my sticks hit that metal, I was hooked. I pounded out beat after beat, dancing and singing along. I loved it. The music jumped into my body like a venereal disease from a hooker. I stayed in that factory for hours and hours just banging away. The next day, I came back and started right up where I left off. I made up songs about everything: jump ropes, corn, beaver skin hats. Nothing was off limits.

About a week later, I saw an old man playing a beat-up guitar on the street. I watched him for a while, trying to learn what he was doing as I stood there. After about an hour, he said he had to go to the can and asked me to watch his instrument. I gladly agreed. When he left to go to the bathroom, I snatched the guitar and ran all the way to the factory. It was the first thing I had ever stolen and on that day, I said to myself “Music and thieving are going to be the biggest things in your life” and you know what? They still are.

Music has been a part of me ever since. Not a day goes by where I don’t tap out a rhythm or pick up my axe and play a lick or two. If you cut open my veins, I’m fairly certain that quarter notes would come tumbling out. I can’t imagine my life without music and I don’t want to.