Why "Cruise Ship Drummer"?

It's a Burroughs reference.
“I have found my profession. I am an exterminator.”

I have not played on a cruise ship in nearly 15 years.

The name of this site is a reference to Exterminator!a book of short stories by William S. Burroughs, which is partially about a menial job he held early in his writing career.

I was thinking of that when I created this site, when I was working as a drummer on a sternwheeler on the Columbia river. For about six years it was my main source of income, and I was a little bored with the down time, and I was taking a lot of pictures of the other musicians looking bored, and wanted a place to share them.

Long after I quit that job I started posting things actually related to drumming, and I couldn't think of a serious site name that didn't suck, so I decided to keep the name— I didn't have any grand plans for the site anyway. In the context of a drumming blog the name was ironic in a slightly different way than before, and it kept expectations low, so I would feel more free to write whatever I wanted.

And, I thought, the way names of things* work, people quickly forget what the actual words mean, and it just becomes an abstract label that is very particularly linked to the product. Nobody laughs at the Beatles for conjuring the image of a vile, scuttling insect for their name. After awhile nobody sees the actual words.

As my readership has grown, it has occurred to me that hey, dummy, maybe it's time to change it to something more serious, but again had the problem of all the serious names sucking. So I put it off, and the longer I put it off, the more I felt I would be giving up when I finally changed it.

So the hell with it. We are CRUISE SHIP DRUMMER!

* - I refuse to say “branding.”

1 comment:

Juanjavier Martínez said...

Simply impressive!! Keep up the good work!!!