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 Michael Murray - Questions and Answers

1. Where were you born and when did you discover music?
Norfolk, Virginia.  There was always music in my house, especially since my father played drums professionally and my mother played piano (at home). Iíd say my parentís album collection was my first introduction to music.  Things like Blood Sweat & Tears, The Beatles, James Brown, Buddy Rich and many more.

2. Musically who or what inspired you to play and who do you admire as a musician?
I suppose my father was my first inspiration.  Every now and then he would set up his drums in the house and I got to play on them.  His band even rehearsed there a couple of times. Later in life when I discovered RUSH, Iíd say Neil Peart is my hero.  Besides his great lyrics, his precision on the drum kit is nothing short of amazing.

3. Do you have any formal training??? If so, where did you study and who have you studied under?
The only ďformalĒ training I guess Iíve had is in band class from grade 6 through high school.  I also took a year of piano lessons somewhere during high school.  Otherwise, the rest of my ďtrainingĒ was from my dad and playing in various different bands including playing in a few my dad played in when they needed a drummer and he wasnít available.

4. How did you arrive at your current instrument?
It should be easy to tell from my previous answers.  Of course my father was the main reason. Other than that, I suppose the primal emotional release you get from beating the crap out of something is another reason!

5. When you write/play what are you trying to do or say with your music?
For me, I play a lot by feel.  Just sensing the rhythms and where I feel the music is going kind of comes natural to me.  Iíve only written one song, a long time ago.  It was for my first fiancťe.  But that didnít work out and I havenít written anything since.

6. What other interests outside of music do you have or had?
Science Fiction and Fantasy books, movies or tv shows.  Oh, and I play a lot of poker.

7. What do you consider your greatest accomplishments?
Owning a house. (I know, lame right?)

8. What are your musical goals?
To me, my main goal is to have fun.  Other than that, maybe convince myself to write something again.

9. Any words of advice to anyone, about anything?
Donít sweat the small stuff.  And almost everything is small stuff.

10. If you could have lunch with three people, living or dead who would they be? Why?
Neil Peart (do I need to explain?), Jon Anderson (again, do I need to explain?), My Mother (because I miss her.)

11. If you were stranded on a deserted island what 5 albums would you take with you?
Yes - Close To The Edge
Rush - Hemispheres
Heart - Dreamboat Annie
Pink Floyd - Wish You Were Here
Blues Brothers - Briefcase Full Of Blues (I donít know why, but this album always picks me up!)

12. If you could play another instrument what would it be? Why?
Bass.  I just love that low end!

Rapid fire questions, one word or short answer.
13. Favorite Song?
   Natural Science - Rush
14. Favorite Singer?   Jon Anderson
15. Favorite Drummer?  Neil Peart (duh)
16. Favorite Keyboardist?   Rick Wakeman
17. Favorite Guitarist?    Jeff Beck
18. Favorite Bassist?   Victor Wooten
19. If you were to have any superpower what would it be?    Immortality
20. Favorite Food?   Peanut Butter
21. Favorite Drink?   Milk
22. Favorite Movie?   Lord Of The Rings (all of them)
23. Favorite TV Show?   Big Bang Theory
24. Favorite Actor/Actress?   Samuel L. Jackson
25. Favorite Color?  Blue
26. Favorite Car?  Dodge Magnum
27. Favorite place to vacation?   Atlantic City (havenít been to Las Vegas yet though)
28. Motivational phase that you love?   Too much of anything is not good for you.