One song that is meaningful to me was (and still is) “Don’t Stop Believin” by Journey/Glee. Whenever I hear that song, it reminds me how far I came as a musician throughout Middle school, High school, and College. I started off playing the drums in Middle school (7th grade) for beginner band. I was not good at first, barely getting past performing exams for the first three months. One day, my fellow drummer asked me if I wanted to take the music book home to study and I said yes. For a week, I practiced the songs that I did not understand along with learning some new songs on the drums and xylophone. For the next two years (which is eighth grade and ninth grade, I played drums in beginner band.
In the meantime, I was learning to play songs on the piano with fellow classmates. In my sophomore year, my music Teacher asked me if I wanted to play the piano instead of drums for Senior band (which is advanced learning for music). I went on with playing piano for the rest of my time in high school. At first, I nervous because I was playing music with the best musicians in the school. (Plus I was not very good on the piano) However, it did not affect the way I played because I knew I had to be the best I can be on the piano. Within 3 months, I drastically improved. I came from barely playing a piece to playing songs with ease. According to my Music Teacher at the time, he said that I was one of the best pianists he ever had. Going into my Junior year, I was an established musician within the senior band. My piano buddy at the time was better at reading music better than I was. She actually offers her to help me out with improving my craft on the piano.
Throughout my Junior year, I participated in musician competitions (although I did not win any of them) that was not the highlight of my time in high school. It was during a daytime show in school when there was a brief when I played “Don’t Stop Believin” and “A thousand miles” and everyone in the audience sang along (for about 2-3 minutes). On that day, I was considered one of the best musicians in the school. A couple of weeks after, me and my friends who were bass a player and drummer were put into a group called the CRG (Contemporary Repertoire Group). My Music Teacher did that because we always practice songs together, so he felt that it was right to put us in a group. My teacher taught us a song to play at a concert but we never had a chance to play because we could not have a committed singer. However, we kept playing songs going into my senior year. (Senior band won 3 straight competitions in amusement parks such as Hershey Park and Dorney Park.)
By this time, my piano buddy graduated and another up and coming piano player came along, which I helped as well. In my senior year, a lot of situations were going on with me that affected my further development in playing the piano. I was worried about applying to college but I had to study and take my SAT. I also lost some family members which emotionally affected me. My fellow drummer in the senior band broke her ankle and as a result, we lost the music competition for the first time in 4 years. Despite our loss, I won musician of my 2014 graduation class. Overall, Don’t Stop Believin makes me think about all these events that happened in high school. Despite what happened towards the end of high school, I was able to get better at producing beats and play the piano periodically in college.
Links for both versions of Don’t Stop Believin’: