129 – Steve Fidyk: Laying a Foundation with Soph & Morello, Wrapping Up a 26-Year Army career, Putting Family First
Steve Fidyk’s career has been a balance between military service in the Army Field and Army Blues bands, civilian life as a member or leader of various creative projects, and academia as an author, clinician, and Artist in Residence at Temple University. The son of a weekend warrior sax player, Steve was encouraged to pursue music from an early age. He began sitting in with his dad’s band and by age 11, was getting called for gigs. He went on to study with Ed Soph and Joe Morello before winning the drum chair for the funk group in the Army Field Band and later the Army Blues big band. With Annapolis, MD as his home base, Steve has been able to maintain a presence in multiple east coast cities including Baltimore, Washington DC, Philadelphia and New York.
In this podcast, Steve talks about:
How orchestral training helped shape his drumset playing
Studying with Ed Soph and Joe Morello, who kept him focused on musical and technical development rather than professional ambition, and how their style of teaching lays the foundation for a student to pursue anything
Spending equal time developing mechanics and concept
Always viewing his music career through the lens of providing for his family
His career in the military, the single largest employer of musicians in the world
Working for an institution while avoiding an institutional mindset
How “staying current” outside his military gig kept him busy and motivated outside of it, and is making the transition away from it easier
Steve endorses Mapex drums, DW hardware and pedals, Zildjian cymbals, Remo drumheads, Vater sticks, and LP percussion.