CHARLIE "CHINO" SIMEK

CHARLIE

PASSIONS
Skating: 12 Years

Performance On Drums: 9 Years

Destroy A Drum: How did you start playing drums and what influenced you to pick up the sticks?

C.S: "I grew up surrounded by drummers in the house, my father is a drummer and my older sister had started playing and I immediately felt like I needed to pick up on it. Since both my father and sister played, it was always something that I felt was in my blood and it came naturally. So when my sister, who is 2 years older than me started playing in the school band and I got into it we both had drumming as a great way to bond. I started playing drums during middle school and did drum-line and concert band throughout high school as well." 

Destroy A Drum: What influenced you to skate and integrate both skating and drumming as something that drives your passion for two completely opposite entities? 

C.S: "I would say as a kid I played a lot of Tony Hawk Pro Skater 2 and that made me want to pick up a board and rip it up, but I was very far from ripping it up in terms of tricks because I ripped more jeans from falling than anything back then. I fell more times than I could count before I could get the hang of actually skating and figuring out my own style on the board. The first few years I kept hitting the ground and jumping into the bowl only to slip so hard and land in the most painful ways. It was definitely something that I didn't pick up like drums. Since I started skating first before drumming I was already into a passion driven entity that really drove my devotion for perfection in what I was doing and I found skating to be an outlet of expression that I could really connect to. Skating was something I did first and it will always be something that I have a passion for and do to the best of my ability. Drumming came afterwards and I slowly but surely dove into that with just as much passion because I felt real connected with marching and concert band." 

Destroy A Drum: What would you say makes you devote your time to one more than the other now and how did marching drums influence you more than the usual drum-set route?

C.S: "I would say that since I've graduated high school I've skated a lot more than drum because I wasn't really into drums for playing drum-set but much more for the marching and concert band aspects. Having both drumming and skating to express my passion was something that influenced me to push the envelope and fully express myself. I definitely strived to perfect both with just as much effort towards either one, and I balanced them both when I was in high school. I'd come back from a late night skate sesh just to wake up at 6am for marching band practice and I really enjoyed it. That just goes to show much you can do for something you are passionate about. I recently just got back from the DCI (Drum Corps International) event and was blown away by the performance of so many drum corps. As a structure you have to hit your mark on the field while playing so it's not only crucial to know your part and play it to perfection but if your stepping is off then it doesn't even matter if the parts are flawless. You have a lot more going on with integrating the marching aspect and are always having to improve your performance as a unit to play and march at the same level of precision and accuracy as the person next to you. To most people marching sounds pretty easy but is the farthest thing from it once you get on the field and realize you not only need to have your entire drum performance memorized but also your movements. If there was something like that here in Corpus I'd be in it right away because that's where my passion for drums is."

Destroy A Drum: Since skating is your main focus right now and driving your passion, are you doing anything more than what you did in the past when drums were involved? 

C.S: "Right now me and some friends are in the process of filming a dvd that is a couple of years in the making. We have been working on that for a long time and now that I have more time to skate we are skating in places out of town and building up a huge log of film and shots from different areas of the state that we have skated. That is something I am really proud to put out once we have perfected some big moves and capture them at the best angles. I've invested a lot of time and money into gear like boards and cameras so I have the equipment to not only skate to the best of my ability but film it professionally. Most of the time you'll see big companies like Volcom releasing these home skate dvd's and that's pretty much what we have coming out in more of a professional view with the equipment we have. The biggest opportunity I have right now is to perfect my style of skating which is more of a vert style. I'm constantly trying to improve and gravitate towards constructing my own style within getting air and grabs."

Destroy A Drum: Would you say that by combining skating and drumming they both have influenced you to find better opportunities in life that you wouldn't have tried if not for those two huge factors in your life? 

C.S: "I definitely would say that by playing drums and skating I've looked at life a bit differently and see that with devoting yourself to a passion you love will take you farther than anything. There is the typical route of going to school, getting a degree, and finding a lifelong job, and I understand that fully as a responsibility but skating and drumming for me have always been my go-to lifelong "jobs". I would love to skate in order to make a living and do it more professionally than just as a hobby. I believe that having the ability to skate and drum gives me the opportunity to be more artistic and express myself in a deeper meaning. I look at skating and drumming as two entities that I devote my all to and give everything I have within because they in return inspire me to find bigger opportunities in life and be overall happier with the life I live."

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