Brad Meador
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Apr 19

Music History

A couple of folks have asked me about my musical upbringing.  I have avoided posting because I kind of think it’s a bit self-indulgent.  But all blogs are basically created to feed the author’s narcissism anyway, right?

  • My Mom taught piano while I was growing up, so I’ve always been playing music.
  • I took 10 years of piano, starting when I was 4. I can play two songs, neither very well.
  • I took up classical violin in 4th grade. I also dabbled with the viola.
  • In addition to my classical violin training, I played bluegrass and Cajun fiddle at contests all over Louisiana. I only won when my buddy John Johnson was exempt from competition because he had won the year before. I think he plays for Rascal Flatts now. My mom would accompany me on the guitar and my little sister would join on the washboard.  We were the Meador Family Band.
  • Around that time I also picked up the mandolin, though I’m still not as good at it as I would like to be. I’m not all that good at the violin anymore, for that matter. Not an instrument you can put down for a couple of years…
  • I took up string bass in 6th grade. In 8th grade I started playing in a semi-professional symphony orchestra.  The director of the symphony was Tony Kushner’s father.
  • I played bass with a group of professors all through high school to make some extra cash.  It’s good to be one the only bass players in the state.  We played mostly churches.  Trust me, there are a lot of churches in Central Louisiana.
  • I was going to be a String Bass Performance major in college until the Mechanical Engineering bug bit me.
  • It’s been years since I’ve played in an orchestra, and I miss it.  There are a lot of great community orchestras in the Bay Area, but I have commitment issues.  (And my bass will only fit in my car on sunny days…)
  • I was in musicals at the GPGC every summer 1983 – 1986. My crowning glory was playing Conrad Birdie in Bye Bye Birdie. This fueled an Elvis obsession that lasted for years.
  • I played electric bass in various Jazz Bands in high school. Freshman year they made me play electric bass in the marching band and that SUCKED.
  • I was an arts major at my high school, the Louisiana School for Math Science and the Arts.  I was in the 18 piece show choir junior\senior year. Yes, we sang and danced (unbelievable to me now) in shows all over the state. We appeared in Steel Magnolias.
  • I taught myself guitar late in college, mostly to support my singing habit. To date, I play it almost to the complete exclusion of all else.  My guitar fetish has proven to be an expensive habit.  More on that in another post…

Definitely a jack of all master of none thing going on here, but you get the idea.  For the record, I don’t think my story is much different than just about everybody who grew up with the arts.

Thanks for indulging!