Follow Me on Patreon!

Hey friends! I started a Patreon account, and would love it if you checked it out!

This will be a great place to support me on my drumming journey. You will have access VIP video blog posts, longer drum clips, full song drum covers, and watch my progress as I learn a new instrument, keyboards!

There will also be a section just for students! If you enjoy my mini lessons, you need to check this out. I will give longer, more in depth video lessons, take lesson requests, give lessons on full cover songs, and also offer my student supporters a chance for one on one drum chats!

See you on Patreon! Thanks!


Drumming Clinic May 23rd- Get Your Ticket Now!

Hey friends! Next Monday, May 23rd I will be giving a clinic through Beat Keepers on constructing creative beats and fills.

We will discuss using rests, doubles, rudiments and overlapping patterns to get away from straightforward beats and fills, with the goal of developing our own creative styles.

We will also focus on creating grooves that blend in with the song and the other instruments while still allowing us to get playful with our rhythms.

It is going to be a really fun clinic so grab your ticket now!!

I also have a couple slots open for private lessons, so if you are interested in learning drums or improving on your skills, give me a message. We can set up a free consultation to discuss your drumming goals and how I can help you reach them.

ModPods new album “Ma’am” out today!

Photo by Marissa Lynn

ModPods new album is out today, 1/7/2022. Check it out on Bandcamp!

We had a lot of fun working on this album. Most of the instrumental tracks were recorded pre-covid, but then we had to take a long break once the covid pandemic hit. It felt like forever until we got it completed. Working on this album really pushed me to level up my bass and guitar playing. I am very grateful for my awesome bandmates Myriad and Daniel, and all the hard work they put in to make this album possible. Please check it out, and grab a copy. Get ready to dance!

Hiking Adventure in Sedona AZ

A collection of photos from my hiking trip in Sedona, AZ.

I recently went on a hiking trip with my lovely friend Jazmin. Our birthdays are close together, and we spent 2 days in Sedona, AZ to celebrate. We hiked for 6 plus hours each day, taking in some majestic scenery! We stayed at a cute Air B+B, where we cooked and watched movies at night. We looked at the stars, enjoyed a zen garden, and encountered a heard of wild boars in the dark.

The Rudiment A Day Drummer Challenge!

Are you ready to take the challenge??

In drumming, there are 40 standard drum rudiments.  I will be posting one rudiment video a day, for forty days, for the #rudimentadaychallenge 

The video will include a brief lesson and demonstration of the days rudiment.

   As a bonus, at the end of the challenge I will be giving away a free drum lesson to 2 interested participants!

The contest will happen on Instagram, but I will also be posting the videos on Facebook  Twitter and YouTube.

    Here are the details!

1 –  Post of video of yourself playing the day’s rudiment with the hashtag #rudimentadaychallenge

2 –  hashtag the name of the day’s rudiment.

3 – Tag me @mindianaj on Instagram if you do want to enter the contest for the free lesson!

At the end of the challenge I will pick 2 participants that tagged me and each will receive one free hour long virtual lesson!

   You don’t have to enter the contest to join in on the fun either!!!

I encourage all my fellow drummers to join the challenge.  Show your friends and family what drumming is about. Let’s inspire some new people to take up drumming.

Fellow teachers, I encourage you to join the challenge as well, and share it with your students.   Let’s show the world how fun being a drummer is, as well as all the hard work that goes into it.



Rescuing Rosie

 Rescuing Rosie


I was out walking our dog Elvis.  Earlier that day I thought I had heard a kitten meowing across the street, but paid no mind to it.  This time I heard it again, but louder and more desperate.  I glanced across the street to a rehab home and some of the residents were standing by the fence.  They saw me looking and yelled to come over, there is a kitten trapped in a bush.


There is a huge bush just outside the fence.  The residents explained they were not allowed to leave, but had been listening to this kitten crying all day. They asked if I could try to see it.  One resident said she heard it crying the night before.

The bush was thick and gigantic. Probably 7 feet tall 6 feet wide.  It was thorny and I couldn’t reach in.  I could hear the sad cries of the kitten up toward the top.


I went inside to get a flash light and saw. I told my boyfriend Manny what was up.  He came outside to help too.  We looked hard but couldn’t see the kitten. We could hear her though and she sounded so scared.

The residents handed us some tools through their fence. Garden shears and a shovel.  I had a mini saw.  We trimmed and hacked and spent two hours as the sun started going down, not even able to see her.  We would hack where the sound was, and then the cries would move to the other side.


As the sun went down, the residents were shining their phone lights to help us, and cheering us on. We were covered in sweat and painful scratches from the thorny bush.

Finally, just as we were going to give up, I got my first glimpse of her! The tiniest little kitten, all black with icy blue eyes reflecting back at me!


Seeing that kitty gave us hope and we kept cutting.

Around 10pm the residents were called inside, we were tired and defeated. We couldn’t even get close enough to touch her. She could move around in the twisted thorny branches enough to stay out of reach.



We knew we had to go inside and go to bed at some point.  We brought out a towel, a little bowl of water, and an open packet of our dog’s wet food. We left it where she could reach it and hoped it would get her through the night.


We hardly slept. I just kept thinking about her thin tiny body and crusted blue eyes.  I hoped she would make it through the night and we could get her help in the morning.  Manny went and checked on her in the early morning hours and she was still alive, still crying for help.



The next morning I called the animal shelter.  They took down my name and number and said due to Covid they were short staffed and someone would call me when they were on the way.  We kept trying, and her cries were sounding weaker.

We got a friendly neighbor who loves cats.  We told him what was up and he came out.  With his help, we were able to scare her to a cut area of the bush and I was finally able to get my hand on her!  Manny came over and helped pry the branches apart so I could slide her out of the thorny maze.


She was thin with crusty eyes and a runny nose, barely the size of a hand.  We fell in love, she needed our help and we decided to keep her.  We couldn’t let her go now.

I got kitten formula and read up on how to care for the tiny kitten. Her eyes were bright blue, and she was still wobbly. We figured she was 3 weeks old.  She weighed less than a pound.  Poor girl had fleas, worms, a cold, and conjunctivitis.


That evening and for the first few weeks, she was clinging to us like Velcro.  She insisted on sleeping nestled under my chin every night.


I took her to the vet a week later and he said she was so small he couldn’t give her any shots or vaccines yet, I had to get her to 2 pounds.


She is now a healthy and happy 10 week old,  exploding with energy and personality.   We chose the name Rosie.

Her and Elvis are cuddle buddies, but she does get on his nerves sometimes with her bursts of energy.


I wanted to share her story along with all these cute photos. We didn’t want a cat.  We were not looking for a pet, but sometimes a pet needs you.  She needed help and we were the ones who answered her cries.









My Quarantine Thoughts and COVID Theories

God I hate snow. God.

Remember people, human life CAN exist without money.

I was going to go get a haircut on Super Tuesday when Supercuts had a sale…but I got distracted.  Don’t put off what you can do today because tomorrow may never come.

How come no one is just telling Trump “No dude, it’s over.”  Why are we not stopping this? There are people that could stop this.  He isn’t going to understand that he is not the master of America, and he isn’t gonna magically get smarter. He can’t comprehend the constitution.  Just forcefully carry him out of office and put him in a nursing home.  Tell him he is the president of the TV room. He probably won’t even know the difference.

Our president is a delusional bully. He is not mentally fit to be president.  Especially now.

The EPA rollback shit and the selling of government land is really pissing me off.  Trump used his declaration of emergency power to overturn some important regulations and is doing some pretty shady shit when it comes to the environment and public land.  The Earth is healing right now, let’s keep that ball rolling.

Now would be a perfect time to transition our national electric grid and automotive industry to greener options. Wind, solar, hydro, ect.

We could also use hemp to make paper, plastic, ect, and end some of some of that deforestation.

All you oil fucks are already filthy rich and living way higher qualities of life than most people.  Just let us battle climate change, now is the time. There will always be a need for some oil, your children will still inherent millions, quit being greedy dicks and sacrificing the planet.

NASA plans to go to the moon in 2024. I hope the crisis won’t slow their plan down too much.

COVID-19 doesn’t have a super high mortality rate.  It’s danger lies in that it is highly contagious, many people are asymptomatic and it incubates for around 2 weeks.

Everybody dies someday. We need to quit living in fear, and we don’t have to panic.

Just follow the science based orders and do what you can to minimize the risks to yourself and others.

Please don’t inject disinfectant, that is not science based. Trump in general is not science based.

I don’t like the term social distancing, it feels very isolating. Can we please call it physical distancing?

Fear can make you addicted to bad news and makes you search out only the information that affirms the anxiety based beliefs you already hold, and disregard anything that negates it.

Scientific evidence outweighs opinion 100 percent of the time.

This is a new virus and the scientific community is still in the process of collecting data and testing theories. Many things being presented as facts are just theories and opinions.

Many people need to learn how to tell the difference between an opinion (personal belief,) a theory (educated guess based on current evidence,) and a fact (scientifically proven.)

The First Covid-19 death in the US has recently been updated to February 6th in California. They did not travel abroad and would have been infected mid to late January through community contraction.

MY THEORY-  Is that as we do more postmortem testing of suspected deaths we are likely to find it was in the US earlier than previously thought. Also, that it made the jump from bat to human earlier than previously reported.  As we do more antibody testing we are likely to find that more people have already had the virus and it has a lower mortality rate than it currently appears.

Details of the virus’s emergence are still being traced.  Certain genetic mutations needed to happen for it to be so stealth against our immune systems, and I am interested to see if some people contracted the virus previous to these mutations, allowing it to evolve undetected in the earlier stages of human infection.

Tracking the genetic mutations of the virus is like watching Darwinism on a very small scale.


Here is the scientific source and explanation of this graph.  This is a timeline of the genetic mutations of the virus made from genetically sequencing samples of the virus.  Cluster A is genetically closest to the control bat virus.  Cluster B is where the pandemic was gaining momentum in China.

I love how the scientific community is coming together like never before to fight this virus.  The amount of data sharing and international teamwork is incredible.

I kinda wish I would have been a scientist and not a drummer right now lol.  I’d still have a job, and more excitement.

I wish before this happened…that I had gotten new shoes.  I was about to go shoe shopping. My shoes are very worn out now. My feet are aching. Personal problems. From now on I will have 2 pairs of shoes.

I wish I would have had Elvis’ nails trimmed right before quarantine, or I had taken a full training course on how to trim a difficult dog’s nails.

So, I do personally disagree with one aspect of the quarantine, and that is the lack of access to nature and trails. I admit this is mostly a selfish opinion because I hike and run trails for my own mental and physical health.  Not being able to run while breathing in the fresh air is hard on me and making my depression worse.  Plus staying away from people in nature is a secret skill of mine…I was a stoner in Sioux City Iowa.

Seriously though, I really do,  think access to nature is important for human health and our immune systems.  You can still go outside while quarantined

Even so, of course I am not one of those whiny assholes protesting!!! Shut up and take one for the team! If you hate your hair so much, just quit looking in the mirror.

Understand that during this crisis we are at a point in history where we need to make personal sacrifices and put the greater good above individual freedoms. This is bigger than our temporary inconveniences.

I am looking at the positives of this worldwide pause.  The Earth is healing.  The science geek in me can not wait to see all the graphs showing how this moment in time is affecting smog, global temperature, water quality, ect.  This is what the planet needed. It is a collective deep breath for the planet and everyone on it. Just a moment to rest and reset.

The future is unwritten and filled with potential.  We need to figure out a system that works  better for everyone, including the earth/climate.







The Quarantine Month 1: How I feel…

It has been over a month since I have worked. (RIP my job at Bandago 8 1/2 years.)  That last day, Sunday March 15th, I had an eerie feeling it was my last ( I wasn’t laid off until the 18th.)   I remember a sound engineer dropping off a van after the tour she was on was cancelled, she had just driven back from the East Coast. The next 7 months of work she had planned completely vanished.  She seemed devastated and numb.   That was the last client I remember talking to.  The rest of the day was me and my coworker driving  excess vans across LA to store them in lots to sit. On my last day, only a few of the hundred some vans at the LA location were still on the road, and set to return that week.  I enjoyed my job (for a day job,) and appreciate the company. I hope they can eventually recover.

I keep having horrible anxiety dreams about my job.  It is so weird that it isn’t a part of my life and I don’t need to be concerned about it.

I am not OK, and I shouldn’t feel like I have to pretend to be.  I am in a depression mixed with anxiety and adjusting to the new traumatic environment.  I have major depressive disorder and I have trouble getting joy out of life sometimes.  My life has been a roller coaster of going between “normal,” mild depression (eat a lot, lazy, trouble accomplishing small tasks and socializing,) and severe depression (lose weight, quit eating, can’t sleep, ashamed to talk to people, thinking everyone hates me and I don’t deserve friends, and not even drumming brings me happiness.)

I would love to be working, I am not someone who is able to enjoy excess free time.  I need a filled schedule to keep me moving and distracted.  Having a schedule and commitments helps.  I have that kind of successful depression where I can accomplish a lot of things.  With no job or bands, it is getting hard to feel any sense of purpose.  To make matters worse, I am about to run out of my medicine.  This year a 3 month supply jumped from $135 to$ 420.

Normally, losing my job would trigger a depressive episode, but I would be able to use positive thinking, gratitude, and coping skills to get out of it fairly quickly.  I am pretty aware of my illness and take good care most of the time.

Almost all of my normal coping skills are unattainable in this current state. I can’t smash my acoustic drum set, I can’t have band practice, connect with people musically,  and I can’t preform live.  I also can’t go for hikes or spend time deep in nature, and that is a big part of my life.  It is essential to my health.

I can’t take a vacation or go visit my family.  I have been going on 7 mile jogs each day as some type of escape.  Anytime I film myself drumming I just feel like a joke. That’s not me, a  solo drummer. I need a band.  My face hurts from putting on a fake smile.  I am very apathetic towards life.

I have a personal survival plan for I ever start to feel suicidal. Laugh if you want, my last resort plan is to get on a plane, fly to Boise Idaho, rent a car, drive to Yellowstone National Park and bottle feed a baby bear.  My emergency  “life saving cuteness overload serotonin shot to the brain to save my life.”  It’s is a life long dream that I am saving for a dire emergency, because animal rights and stuff. But if it comes to life or death and I have no hope left, I will go hug myself a baby bear.

Well, my baby bear experience is not accessible at this time.  I don’t need it, but just knowing that option isn’t there is adding to the anxiety.

I am thinking very rationally, but my feelings are out of control. It sucks not always being able to have your rational brain control your emotional responses to life.  My rational brain controls my actions, while my gut is a painful ball of knots and panic attacks.  I am stressing about my future security and stability, even though I shouldn’t be.  I feel guilty not being able to just be grateful for having some security at all.  I hate that I have this stupid illness that I feel I should have control over, and but sometimes I can’t.  I feel like I am judged by everyone for not being happy, upbeat or OK with the situation.  Like people think because you are not saying positive things it means you are not following the orders. No…I am just very depressed and can’t fake being OK in times like this.

I have been knocked out of a long running coping routine into a communal trauma induced depression.  Fun times for sure huh? But yes, I am thankful I have a home, Manny, Elvis, and toilet paper.

I really need to do…something. I know having a routine and feeling like I am contributing to society and helping during this crisis, will help me get out of this depressive funk.  I have all the time, just not the money. I want to volunteer.  I am looking for where the volunteers are needed and what is needed from them.  I still have drumming and giving drum lessons, but I do feel stupid just posting solo videos of myself. I want to be doing more than drumming.  I wish I was a scientist working to find a vaccine or studying the genetics of the illness.  I got the knowledge but not the college degree or access to labs lol.  I am a writer, but how and where can I write to make a difference.


Now is the Time for Compassion, Not Judgement

Now is the time for compassion, not judgement.

Trigger warning- depression…

The world has changed with COVID-19. Individual lives have been affected and the world as a whole. With the severe changes and the extreme methods used to combat the virus, another legitimate health threat is looming for many of us. Depression.

It always feels like you are the only one, and the isolation makes it worse. I know that if I am battling it right now many others are suffering too, some very silently.

Please remember depression is a sickness that, like the virus, can result in death. They say up to 200,000 Americans may die of COVID-19. In 2018, there were 48,300 suicide deaths. As it is now for every 4 people who die from Corona 1 person will die of suicide this year. That number is sure to rise as a result of the current circumstances too.

Depression is hard to acknowledge and talk about. Everyone wants to stay positive in this, and believe me I do too. Some people are good at reaching out for help but many hide it, afraid to annoy people with their unpleasant feelings.

There are also things very well meaning people say, unaware that it does more harm than good. These things can be damaging. People with depression, trauma, and anxiety already have hyper-vigilant nervous systems and even small remarks said in the wrong way can seem detrimental.

The first is trying to push positivity upon depression. “Hey, just cheer up.” “It will all be ok.” “You are worrying over nothing. ” “You just need to have a positive attitude.” “Let’s all smile.”

You can not just tell a person to be happy, especially with depression or grief. It makes the person feel isolated in their feelings and wrong to have them. There is a lot of guilt of emotions with depression. “If everyone else can just cheer themselves up why can’t I?”

We need to acknowledge the fact that there are many people battling harsh emotions now. We can not deny that the country is also dealing with a mental health crisis. It is unhealthy and detrimental to not confront this publicly.

It is OK to be sad or depressed. It is OK to need to talk about it. It is OK to express these feelings. Don’t expect people to be able to just put on a happy face during this time.

The next thing please do not compare a person with depression’s situation to others. Like pointing out that other people have it worse. It is minimizing the person and they perceive it as their feelings are invalid, or they are selfish just for having them.

I am seeing a lot of this with the current situation. “Lot’s of people lost their jobs, not just you.” “We are all stuck inside.” “Many people have it worse.”

This can isolate depression and grief and cause guilt for expressing their feelings.

Another really big one, that has been prevalent in the recent situation, is people trying to force gratitude on others. One step further, I am seeing people judging others for a perceived lack of gratitude.

Don’t tell someone else they are wrong because you don’t think they are grateful enough. Do the people who are doing this even realize how rude it is, or how much damage their remarks can do to someone with depression?

“Well at least you have a home.” “You have food and wi-fi so you have no reason to complain.” “Why are you sad you should be grateful of what you do have.” “Your house is comfortable you are selfish for not being grateful.” “How can you complain about losing your job when you have shelter and food, what is wrong with you?’

A person with depression can feel they have no right to any negative emotions, that their pain is not legitimate. These remarks make them feel like their reason for feeling down, sad, shocked, anxious isn’t “bad” enough, so there must be something wrong with them if they have those feelings. It is emphasizing to a person already feeling like a burden that they really are damaged.

Depression is not a lack of gratitude, and gratitude is not the cure for depression. It is actually one of the many coping skills I personally combine to navigate my depression. I do have many things to be grateful for, and I am, but the depression is still there. It helps, but is not as simple as that.

You can be grateful of what you have and still be sad or in pain. Those are natural human emotions.

It still hurts to lose your job. It is a shock to your system when most of your ways of coping and treatment disappear almost overnight.

My personal coping with depression involves medicine and therapy.

It also involves sticking to a sleep schedule and getting at least 7 hours a night. It involves keeping my life as low stress as possible and having the security of a job for the income and purpose to get out of bed. It involves meditation and yoga routines, jogging, hiking and getting time in nature. Expressing my emotions by playing music, and the important connection of playing with others. Playing the drums is my zen zone and vital to my well-being. It actually takes a lot of time, effort, money and sacrifice for me to live healthily with depression.

Please remember depression is a legitimate illness. It is not a lack of positive thinking and it is not a lack of gratitude. It is medical condition and is treated with a mix of different coping skills, medicines, therapy, ect.

It also isn’t just “being sad.” Often it is a lack of emotions, apathy about living, constant numbness. It has physical symptoms too, like your limbs feel like weights you can hardly lift, and getting out of bed can seem impossible. Standing in the shower hurts. It can take so much effort to do the smallest tasks. Living itself is simply painful.

When I am in moderate depression I will gain a couple pounds and get lazy, over eat sugar, sleep too much and cry.

However, when I am in severe depression I lose weight because I loose my appetite, I can’t eat or sleep well, and I also loose any interest in life and the things I normally enjoy. I can’t cry, I feel detached.

After I lost my job I was staying so mentally positive, looking on the bright side, being mindful and staying grateful.  I was counting my blessings and reminding myself that I will be ok.

I also noticed I wasn’t sleeping, I was not eating much, and I was losing weight fast. I disassociated from the emotions of losing my job, hiking, and live music, the sudden financial stress, and I focused on the positive, but still my body was in depression.

About a week later the pain welled up to the point I couldn’t repress it anymore and BAM!!! I cried for 2 like days, and that was OK people, because it does hurt to loose your job, your ability to play music with people, hugs, and all the associated stress of this situation. It is OK to have negative feelings at times like these. It is OK to cry and express pain. It is OK to have conversations that are not all positive and bright.

Those tough conversations are needed right now for many people.  People need to express their pain right now, not hide it for fear of being judged for it.

I am strong and my awareness of my illness, my medication, and my daily routines help me so much. But other people suffering right now may not have these support systems. Some people suffering right now may not even be aware what they are feeling is depression. Also, many people are also dealing with grief at this point in time.

So, to anyone who is judging sad and grieving people, depressed people, or people voicing their hardships at the current situation for not being grateful enough, that isn’t what is needed right now.

Instead of telling people what they should be grateful for, trying telling them why you are grateful for them. That is something many people need to hear right now. Let people know why they are important to this world.

Reach out to a friend and really ask how they are doing if you think they are having trouble. Reach out to friends you may never even think are having trouble too. Many of us are great at hiding our depression, we have been doing it for years.

Please listen to each other and be compassionate and understanding at this time.

My 2019 Favorite Live Bands!

Howdy Friends!


I wanted to share with you some of my stand out favorite bands I played with in 2019. There are so many great bands I shared the stage with this year, but these ones really impressed me.  They are bands that kill it live and they also happen to all feature slaying drummers (suprise! Lol.) Go check them out, you won’t be disappointed.


The Pats Pats

The Pats Pats made an epic overseas trek from their hometown of Tokyo Japan to play Los Angeles in October.  It was their first time here and they did not disappoint.  Cute, fierce and catchy, they wowed a Halloween house show over-packed with excited new fans.  The main members are Akiko on guitar and Midori on bass, with both on vocals. They have a rotating cast of top notch drum mates, bringing hard hitting Kotarods with them on this trip.  They write solid rocking pop songs about love, girl time, and donuts.


Fox Medicine 

Towards the end of 2019 I played 2 shows with Portland based noise rock band Fox Medicine. This dynamic duo describes themselves as “Bubblegum doom,” and that is pretty accurate. Full toned guitar lines that dance around between sludge and rock meld with dominant drums that can both keep the groove and impress with fast fills that fit the songs perfectly. All this under the charmingly aggressive vocals of guitarist Nee make for a one of a kind sound experience.



Fatty Cakes and The Puff Pastries

Fatty Cakes and The Puff Pastries take the term “girl band” to a whole new level, showcasing ferocious full on female force. They have a fun and playful vibe but are not afraid to call people out on their shit. Each member is a powerful presence, and combined they are an unstoppable force. Fronted by Fatty Cakes, who plays an electric ukulele, the group commands your attention through-out their whole set. The vocals can be catchy and harmonious, but there is always the presence of punk rock attitude.



Conan Nuetron and The Secret Friends

Charismatic front man Conan Nuetron put together a talented cast of musicians that brought some very heavy rock to Los Angeles.  He writes songs that are catchy yet complex, and  pure rock n roll.  His live show is filled with enthusiasm and intensity.



You all need to experience the immense wall of sound that is Duderella. You would never guess that this band is a 2 piece.  They embellish on the stoner rock sound by spicing it up with their own unique flare and lots of sass. Wild drumming and thunderous bass explode from the stage when Duderella starts to play.


All Souls

All Souls combine memorizing guitar riffs, haunting vocals, and roaring drums to create a dark sound and omnipotent presence that lingers with you long after they exit the stage.  The 4 veterans of rock that make up All Souls have been progressing quickly, opening up for bands such as Tool, The Jesus Lizard, and Melvins.

I can’t wait to see what bands 2020 brings my way!