Music has a way of transporting us- our minds, our hearts, our thoughts- to passionate, amazing and sometimes frightening place. Songs stir up memories of the past, good and bad. Songs give us new lenses to see through as we survey our current landscape of life. Songs have a way of lighting a candle in the far recesses of our soul, of putting a face on our future, of helping us transcend what we know to what might be. Examining the songs that touch each of us can be a powerful tool in helping us discover our fears and hurts, our dreams and strengths.
Todd Rundgren is one of those not truly a one hit wonders in the music world… You know what I’m talking about, the guy that has a song that everyone remembers, but it’s the only song that ever “made it”. His 1972 mega-hit “Hello It’s Me” is sad, soulful song about the guy whose girl has dumped him, but he is having trouble moving on. It may be a feeling that all of us have had at one time in our life, but it’s truly not the kind of song anyone would want to have as their life theme song. But Todd was a “two hit wonder”, producing a second big hit 10 years later (1983) with the anthem “Bang the Drum All Day” that celebrates the artist in all of us. The lyrics to the song read:
“I don’t want to work, I want to bang on the drum all day
I don’t want to play, I just want to bang on the drum all day
Ever since I was a tiny boy, I don’t want no candy, I don’t need no toy
I took a stick and an old coffee can, I bang on that thing ’til I got blisters on my hand because
When I get older they think I’m a fool, The teacher told me I should stay after school
She caught me pounding on the desk with my hands
But my licks was so hot, I made the teacher wanna dance and that’s why
Listen to this, Every day when I get home from work, I feel so frustrated, The boss is a jerk
And I get my sticks and go out to the shed and I pound on that drum like it was the boss’s head!
Because I can bang that drum,
Hey, you wanna take a bang at it?
I can do this all day!”
Ever feel like this guy? Don’t want to go to work, the boss is a jerk, and no matter what we do we’d rather be doing something else… banging our drum! The song tells the story of a guy who is passionate about one thing- banging his drum all day! The heart of an artist, with “licks so hot” it transforms everyone around him, even the unbelievers. So my questions for you are simple…
First, What does “banging the drum all day” look like for you? What are you passionate about? Stop right now… close your eyes, and shut out the world, and ask yourself, “What is it that I love to do so much that I could do it all day?” What is that activity or work in your life that transforms you and those around you?
Second, and more importantly, What are you doing to position yourself in your life and career to where you can “beat your drum all day”? Are you making practical, intentional and wise steps to move your life towards that point where your activities of passion garner the great portion of your day and your life?
Finding your sweet spot, loving what you do, and doing what you love, living the dream really is that simple. Bang your drum all day? Maybe not ALL day, but bang your drum none the less, and bang it more and more each day!