MUSIC MAYBE (male version)
by D. M. Larson
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CAST OF CHARACTERS
MEL - Owner of a music studio who wants to start an all
SLUG - Goth type who makes weird sounds and turns makeshift
objects into instruments
JJ - Hick/country guy who loves to play the cowbell
BAY - Classically trained musician who dreams of being a rock
Mel is the owner of a small music studio and welcomes the
Hi everyone... this is the studio... this is where the magic
happens... or will happen. Nothing magical yet... except for the rat I found...
over there. I call him magical because he kind of talks to me. Not
with words but with his eyes. We made a connection. And I know he
likes to rock so he's okay little dude. Anyway... this is where the next
big band is going to birth itself. And you're a witness to the first
moments of it's life... take it in... take a moment to let the aura ooze over
you. Yes... feel it... oh yeah. So, I'm a drummer and believe it or
not, drummers do start bands. Rush, the Eagles, Van Halen, Pink Floyd. My
idea is an all percussion rock band. I'll gather all the best drummers in
the area and we'll form a supergroup that will blow everyone away...
literally. I need a good band name... "Blow you away"? "Loud
Bangers"? "Screaming Rats"? I'll figure something out. Where is
that rat anyway? He usually comes out to say hi. We've made
friends. Maybe he could be the band mascot or something. I could
get a clear bass drum and he could run around inside on a little wheel. I
think his hearing is damaged already from all my practicing so I don't think
he'll care. He likes the beat. So you ready to rock?!
Mel goes to his drum set and plays wildly.
Slug is a punk rocker who enters. He sniffs around the
studio and picks up random things, taps on them and makes weird sounds in
reply. Mel enters excited.
Hey, you here to audition?
Slug makes an odd sound and holds up the audition flyer.
That... is... so... awesome! I totally love that
name... like Sting or the Edge.... Slug... love it!
I hate it. But I'm stuck with it. No one calls me
What's your real name?
I don't remember.
Okay... well... what do you play?
Anything. Everything. I play the world around me.
Oh, cool! You mean like Stomp?
Yeah, I stomp on things. A rat! I'll stomp it!
Slug stomps and there is a squeak. Slug makes a sound
No! That's our mascot.
We're the "Squeaky Sextet"... well that's if I can get that
many band members.
Hate the name... how about the Squeaky Slugs?
Named after you?
When you see me play... you'll be like ready to slug
something. It works.
I'll keep working on a name.
Whatever. You got any food?
I think I gave the last of the pizza to Squeaky.
Slug finds the box of pizza on the floor and grabs it and
plops down on a sofa.
Squeaky left the crust... why does everyone leave the
crust? I love the crust.
Slug starts eating the crust.
END OF SCENE
JJ is a redneck/hick looking man in overalls and is hitting a
steady rhythm on a cowbell. He stops and smiles a big grin.
You gotta love the cowbell. The most underrated but
most loved musical instrument of all time. Sure, I've played more
socially acceptable instruments... I've been one of the best church bell
ringers around... no, not like Quasimodo.
He does a Hunchback ringing a bell imitation.
I'd play them pretty sounding bells in the church bell
He pretends to do pretty bells and makes the sound (or
actually has a couple he plays).
They said I was one of the best. Made my momma proud... but
quit the minute I was old enough to skedaddle. I was seduced by the rocking
rhythm of the cowbell.
He does some cowbells and dances a bit.
Some of the greatest classic bands of all time used
cowbells. That's right, brother! The Beatles, Hendrix, CCR, Zepplin
and the Stones all used cowbell. Cowbell is the power behind some of the most
rocking songs of all time.
He starts playing the cowbell during the following:
Feel the rock... feel the rhythm... the feel the power... of
He starts to head bang and lights fade to black.
Lights come up on JJ and Slug in the studio. Slug is
setting up some weird items that he will play and JJ watches with curious
excitement. Mel enters with Bay.
Hey, everyone! I have final band member for our all drummer
band! This is Bay Toven.
That's a great stage name.
That's my real name. Bay... Toven.
Wow, you're parents actually named you Beethoven, after the
What? No, Bay... Bay Toven.
Yeah, like the dog.
No... like the composer.
You know the song... Roll over Beethoven.
You really need to get out more.
I hate out.
Bay... these are our other band members, JJ...
JJ gives Bay a hardy handshakes which Bay seems annoyed by.
I see... how appropriate.
Slug makes a fist and punches his other hand.
Don't make me show you where I got the name.
What brings you here, Bay. What you play?
I always wanted to be in an actual rock band. I was classically trained at some of the best schools in the country. I could have been a percussionist for some of the greatest symphonies in our country, but I decided I wanted to rock and roll.
You've come to the right place.
And I play the xylophone and the cymbals.
You have to get classically trained to play the cymbals?
There is an art to it... I wouldn't expect you to understand.
What's that mean?
Guys... please... let's not fight... we're drummers...
And we make peace. We're the ones that hold the band
together. We're the harmony and the beat.
You're right noble lead. Show us the way. What
song do you have for us first?
I was thinking we'd improvise, in a jazz sort of way.
Works for me.
Improvise... I don't know...
They never taught you to improvise at them fancy schools of
I have been schooled in a variety of music theory.
Slug and JJ begin playing. Mel happily goes to his drum
set and joins in. Bay looks confused and a bit stressed. He
carefully gets out his symbols, looks at the others with a painful look.
Stands with his cymbals waiting for the right moment. He almost plays a
few times. Finally Mel stops them.
Whoa, whoa... hold a second everyone...
When they stop and it's quiet, Bay smiles and crashes his
Maybe I better rethink this a bit.
It sounded good to me.
JJ starts playing again and SLUG joins him as lights fade to
Bay looks around the room at all the instruments.
Sometimes you're given everything and it means
nothing. My parents gave me all the lessons, all the support...
everything I needed to succeed as a classically trained musician, but somehow,
I was left feeling empty. I slowly realized what I was doing had nothing
to do with me, but everything to do with them. I spent most of my life
doing things for others, trying to figure out what other people want me to
do. I was always guessing at what might make my parents happy, my friends
happy... I never asked myself, what would make me happy. I was so worried about
people not liking me... and thinking I was selfish. But being selfless can
leave a person feeling less... empty. And without an identity. So I finally got
tired of it all and quit. Quit everything... quit the symphony... quit
the social pressure... quit worrying about what my parents thought of me and
found out who my real friends were. Who could appreciate me for me... not for
what I can do or do for them. And you know I realized after I thought a
little bit about myself? I realized I wanted to be a rock star. I
know... it's crazy, but it's something I can get excited about... it's
something that makes me feel alive. And even if I fail, at least I tried
and at least I was happy. How many people can say they are happier with a
failure than a success?
JJ is looking at Bay and studying him.
What's the matter? Do I have something on my face? I
hate it when I get food on my face.
Bay tries to use one of his cymbals as a mirror and looks at
That's the problem, Bay. You're too perfect looking.
This is a rock band. No one ever looks good in a rock
band. Neat ain't cool.
What do you mean?
We gotta mess up your hair.
But I work so hard on it.
Yes, it's perfect, but perfect is so wrong for a rock star.
I'm not a rock star.
You won't be with that attitude.
Don't be sorry either. Rock stars are never sorry.
Never sorry. Got it.
JJ messes up Bay's hair.
Hair is getting better.
Mel enters. Slug follows sleepily.
We gonna play some music or what?
You bet. I have some sheet music for you.
I thought the improvising was nice...
But maybe some planning might be in order. After all,
we are breaking new ground.
With Na Na Hey Hey Good-bye?
Let's give it a try.
If the actors are able to play the song, then they try it out here. If not, then the scene continues.
That's kind of mellow for a rock band isn't it?
And totally lame.
What's wrong? Not enough cow bell in the song for you?
Can't we do something with a bit more power to it? Like Costello's "Lover's Walk"?
I like the sound of that.
It goes something like this...
They either play if actors are able or Mel stops them right
No, no. Wait a minute. This is my group and I say we
play Na Na Hey Hey.
I thought this group belonged to all of us.
Either we all get a say in this or we all say "hey hey
I started this band so I'm the leader. Deal wit hit.
I can't work like this. I quit.
I don't know about this, Mel.
Fine, you quit too.
That isn't what I...
I know you and JJ got all buddy, buddy. Go with him for
all I care.
Let's go, Bay.
Bay notices Slug. Slug is crying but trying to hide it.
Slug? Are you okay?
Are you crying?
No, shut up.
Slug is crying.
What's the matter, Slug?
Are you upset because we're fighting?
I don't want to talk about it okay?
Look... I won't quit okay? I'll play "Na na na na."
I hate "na na na na."
So you're crying because of the song.
No, geez. Just drop it okay?
But we're all your friends, Slug. You can talk to us.
Are you my friends? Really?
Of course we are.
But friends don't quit right? They don't walk out on
That's why you're upset. Because we quit.
Everyone's always quitting on me. My whole life... all the
people I get to know... quit. I never do. I'm loyal. I stay. But
they all leave me. Started with my dad... he quit on us when I was little and
my mom quit on me even though he was still around. He quit caring and quit
feeling anything. Everything I tried, every friend I made, quit on me in some
way... I always felt like I failed them... and drove them away. But
here... I finally thought I'd found a place where I could be a part of
something. This time we've been together has been the best days of my
life. Sounds pathetic but it's true. I've never been happier than I've
been playing music with all of you. Coming here each day gives me something to
live for, something to make me drag my lazy carcass out of bed. I feel so alive
here, playing with all of you. And it's more than just living... it's the
fact I found a place in this world. A place where I matter and I fit in. I
didn't feel lost anymore.
Mel, JJ and Bay all look at each other sheepishly and then
they look at Slug with smiles.
Hug me and you all die.
What do you say we try something we a beat?
Mel hands out a new song.
I say... yeah!
Lights fade to black and a song with strong drums plays - or
if the actors are able, they can end the scene with a song.
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