It is always a great day here at the Don Hamrick Drum Center in North Myrtle Beach, even on a rainy day like today with Tropical Storm Andrea darkening the skies and giving us intermittent doses of heavy downpours! Today school is officially out here in Horry County, so that means I have the summer off and will be spending my days at the Don Hamrick Drum Center instead of taking care of the County’s school children. I have made an official summer resolution which is to get serious again about the drums. I began playing drums/taking lessons in 2005 at the age of 35. I am not sure why I waited so late to get started. My brother, Mike Talbot, is a professional drummer, so I grew up around drums and bands but I didn’t notice that I had an interest in drums then. When I was a kid, for some reason, I was busy being fascinated by biological science, namely cellular biology and spent my time observing animals and taking every science class in high school that I could. I was a true nerd! Then somewhere along the way, years later, I realized that I when I listened to music I paid particular attention to the drum parts. Around this time, my now 20 year-old daughter was a percussionist in middle school band, so I guess there is some natural drum tendency in my family. However, I fought the urge for years to sign up for drum lessons with every excuse I could come up with, “I’m too old, I’m too busy, I won’t be any good, Learning to play now would be useless, I should have taken high school band because its too late now,” etc. etc. When both of my daughters were in high school I decided to try drum lessons. In 2007, after a couple of years of having a few different drum teachers, I ended up taking lessons from Don Hamrick, who at the time I had never heard of. It was under Don’s direction that I made significant progress in a very short time. To make a long story short, I am now married to Don Hamrick and am part owner of a drum center, so I have no excuse for not playing. But despite having unlimited access to the best drum teacher in the world and having a variety of top-of-the-line drum sets available to me 24/7, I slacked on practicing until I stopped completely. So today, I Mary Jo Hamrick am leaving all of my excuses behind and am rededicating myself to playing drums. I will be checking in frequently with updates on my drumming status. Happy drumming!