As some listeners might remember, I moved to Asheville, North Carolina in November of last year. My wife and I fell in love with the creative, artistic, open-minded, genuinely nice people here in Asheville. But what we didn’t realize as we were planning our move was that we were relocating to a mecca of drum-related activity!
Picture this: a 90,000-person small city in the Blue Ridge Mountains of Western North Carolina. Jeff Hankin builds his gorgeous Carolina Drumworks drums here. DRUM! Magazine and drumgearreivew.com’s AJ Donahue, who is one of the world’s best drum gear reviewers, lives here. The Ludwig and Gretsch factories are just couple of hours’ drive away in Monore, NC and Ridgeland, SC, respectively.
This week’s show focuses on another member of the Asheville drumming community. Somebody I think of as a member of the Drum Podcasting Mount Rushmore. Someone who’s been speaking to the drumming community since all the way back in 2014, and has amassed an audience of more than 67,400 on Instagram. That’s a lot of drummers!
Daniel Stevens started The Drum Heads Podcast after a back injury kept him from being able to play the drums, resulting in Daniel finding himself depressed. He used podcasting as a way to connect to people. And for four years, it worked. Until it didn’t.
On May 8th, Daniel posted on The Drum Heads’ Instagram: “Hey guys, Unfortunately, I’m going to be taking a temporary hiatus from The Drum Heads Podcast. To be 100% straight up honest with you guys it can’t do it right now. Between being a husband, a father of 4, working 50 plus weeks and trying to produce a show. I’m completely burnt out. I’m beginning to lose my joy for drums & drumming. I never want to lose my passion for being a drummer. Drumming & Podcasting was my happy place but lately, it has slowly turned into something I dread and it’s beginning to impact my family life & my mental health. So with that being said the show is going to have to go on hiatus until I can get everything figured out.”
This kind of message takes courage and vulnerability for anyone to share, and Daniel was very open about his challenges.
In this episode:
- Daniel and The Drum Heads’ origin story
- The first episode
- Improving as a podcaster
- The Mount Rushmore of drum podcasts
- Diversity in the drum community
- Family and work-life balance
- Taking a break
- Mental health
- Disney® costumes, comedians, dancing
- Potential drum road trips
- Daniel’s gear: lightning round
I want to thank Daniel for being open and honest about the challenges he and his show are facing. In our age of curated social media presentation of ourselves, we often sand off the warts and show other people only the good parts. Daniel is courageous in sharing about his mental health and I want to encourage anyone who’s listening: if you’re struggling with depression, anxiety, don’t suffer alone.
We have plenty of resources where you can start a conversation. Reach out. We are a community, and we take care of each other. It can be tough to start these conversations but you’ll be glad you did.
Good news: The Drum Heads is coming back to wherever you get your podcasts, including Apple Podcasts, in a couple of weeks. Subscribe and follow them on Instagram. And if you can, please consider supporting Daniel’s production costs.
This week’s episode was produced by Stephen Bennett. The Drum Showroom production team includes Ben Etter, Eric Stolz, Andy Jordan, Dan Gurin, Brandon Paluzzi, Rich Carlson, and Heather Croteau.
If you’re a creative professional interested in helping podcasts with their production, blogging, graphic design, composition, and voice-over needs, please drop us a line. We’re building a network of creative talent to help podcast creators save time, and to create paid work for creative people.
Thank you so much for listening. We’ll see you next week for our Season Two finale!
Listen to Drum Showroom Episode 29 here, and please subscribe and leave a review if you like what we’re doing. It would really mean a lot.