This I Believe

Daniel - Hawthron Woods, Illinois
Entered on May 2, 2007
Age Group: 18 - 30
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Four years ago, I didn’t know anything about the guitar; other than it made noise. I didn’t know the first thing about music, what music really meant. Sure I listen to music and I know the lyrics to some of my favorite songs, but I never really listened to music. I never took the time to understand what music meant to the artists that performed it and to the fans who listened to it. The one thing I knew about music was that you can express your self through it.

My freshman year in high school I met someone who today is my best friend. We were sitting in natural science class not doing the work we were supposed to be doing, but instead we started talking about what our favorite music is and who our favorite bands were. A lot of the bands we mentioned were bands that we both listened to like Blink 182, The Atari’s, and even the bands from back in the day like AC/DC and Zeppelin.

My friend asked me if I played any musical instruments and at the time I didn’t. I mentioned that I’ve written some songs for fun. He played guitar and the electric violin. I went over to his house and picked up his guitar not knowing what I was doing, just strumming the strings up and down. Then he took the guitar from me and started to teach me how to play. First he showed me the three basic chords G, C, and D major chords. We put my lyrics to those chords and it wasn’t that good, but it was a start to something I will never forget.

2-3 times a week I’d go over to his house after school, and he would teach me how to play the guitar and read sheet music. Once I was able to learn the basic power and bar chords we decided to start up our own band. He would play lead guitar, his friend was our drummer, and I’d play rhythm guitar and lead vocals, we had no base player. My sophomore year in high school we performed our first show in a garage for our friends, with the lyrics I wrote. After it was over I felt, I let people know what was on my mind by having them here my lyrics, and it felt great. That is why I believe in Self expression through music, so people know how you really feel.

I will never forget the first time I picked up the guitar and the first time we performed. I will always be thankful for my friend Hugh, who taught me everything I know about the guitar and music.