As I said in my Discovery Prompts Day 20 post, music has always been a very important part of our lives. Music has also played a huge role in our children’s lives.
When our three sons were in fifth grade, they began playing instruments in the school band. One played drums, even though two of them wanted to. One played the trumpet because I said it would be a good instrument for him. I’m not sure why. The third played the saxophone. We purchased instruments and they played in the band through high school.
We had one other instrument in the house. It was a classical guitar I purchased for my wife as a present for our first Christmas together. One of the boys picked it up and began to teach himself to play. It seemed like no time at all and he was in his room playing along with his favorite music. He and his brothers and a friend decided they were going to start a band. The only problem was, the only instrument they had was the classical guitar.
One of the smartest things I ever did was to go into a music store and purchase a set of drums, an electric bass guitar, and an electric lead guitar. On Christmas Day, we presented the instruments to our boys and said, “There you go, it’s all up to you now.”
Our son who wanted to play drums now had his chance. One played the bass, the other the guitar. The three of them literally taught themselves how to play. In a very short period of time, their band was beginning to sound pretty good and they were getting invitations to play at church youth events.
I also surprised myself with a new Rhodes electric piano which I still play.
The boys began writing music which they performed with their band. They recorded a couple of CDs and sold them at their concerts.
When our sons graduated from high school they attended a Christian college and became involved in the music program. They traveled all four years with a musical ministry group representing the college at youth events as part of a student recruiting program. They regularly played for chapel and student events at the school.
The boys have continued to do incredibly well in music. They have all upgraded their instruments several times since that first Christmas. For five years, our son who plays guitar traveled with a Christian rock band. They performed in huge events and shared the stage with many famous groups. He and his wife are now worship and arts pastors at a large church in Nashville.
The drummer has played with various groups and often plays with artists needing a drummer, also in Nashville. He and his wife are both incredibly talented. They write music together, his wife plays guitar and sings.
The bassist plays with the worship team at his church, and often plays with other musicians as opportunities arise.
One of the greatest joys we ever had was playing and singing with our sons and daughter for two years as we led worship at our church. I took the time for granted and it passed all too quickly. When the boys left for college they left a huge hole, both in our music and in our hearts.
Four instruments. Christmas presents. It really wasn’t a lot of money but the results changed the boys’ lives and ours.