Let Bill Bruford of King Crimson show you.
I started playing the drums when I was 10 years old. It was mostly my father’s idea, because I used to bang on things a lot, so he got me a drum set since it was a way I could put my banging to good use. I certainly did. Here I am 34 years later, still playing the drums. Drums let me tour the country playing in bands as a teen and young adult, it allowed me to perform in theatre, and professional shows as an adult, and now making my own music and running a YouTube channel.
All of that stuff is awesome, and I am so thankful I got to experience so much playing the drums. But even without all of that, the most important part of playing the drums, is it is a way to escape all my troubles and release all of my pent up aggression, anger, and frustrations. It also seems to just make anxiety fade away. Drumming is one of the best things to turn negative energy into something positive. It is the one instrument that can take literal RAGE and make it sound amazing.
Music in general is a great form of escape, whether playing it or listening to it, but playing drums especially is something magical. It’s highly physical, it’s loud, and the longer you do it, the more benefit you get. If you want to rid yourself of anxiety, sit down at the drums and learn something new. Focusing on rhythms you do not already know, will make your brain switch from worry mode, to concentration mode. The loudness and power of the instrument make it impossible to ignore. Play until you can do it right without thinking. If that happens too fast and you’re still feeling anxiety, pick something harder. Do it until you’re exhausted. You’ll find the anxiety has just vanished.
To drum away anger or frustration, start off going crazy on the drums. Let it all out, bang on everything like crazy. Do as much spastic drum soloing, or just chaotic noise as possible for about 25 to 30 minutes. But at the end of this, turn it into a groove. Play something simple, or something you can really latch onto. Stay steady, don’t speed up, don’t slow down. Evolve the chaos into something with order. This will place things in order in your mind and spirit. Play the steady groove for the equal time as the chaos. At the end of this session, if you’re still feeling anger or frustration, repeat the process. It will fade.
Drums will fix you. Don’t worry about them. Fix you. They need to figure out themselves.