“Rhythm is innate in all of us” Klotz says

By Tammy Showalter, Freelance Writer

At the age of 10, Prince George’s County native and Army band Commander [Retired] and Chief Warrant Officer, Shelia Klotz discovered an enjoyment in playing the drums; she said it just came easier for her.

She’s now using that ordained gift to share it with others in the form of teaching as she teaches the drumline at the King’s Christian Academy(KCA).

The Anderson’s, whose children attend KCA reached out to Klotz and offered their three-car garage in order to provide adequate space for the drummers to learn in.

“I’m so thankful that they opened the garage to us,” Klotz said.

“Rhythm is innate in all of us,” Klotz said in an interview on the Guitar Gurus in interview #82. The interview gives good background information on Klotz and her travels outside of the United States playing in the Air Force Band and then for the Air National Guard Band.

Klotz grew up participating in summer drum camps and said for her very detail-oriented camp that was held this week, from beginning to end, the eight campers are going to get 40 nonstop hours of drumming.

“They took it in fast,” Klotz said. “They learned 10 different beats in one day and then we started adding in two more beats and when they see that they can get their arms going and then their feet, their faces just light up.”

“Tuesday I went old school on them and on Day three, they had learned up to 23 different beats, including pop, rock, jazz and latin; with latin being the hardest to learn. They have a camp solo that they’re perfecting today and will play for their parents today.”

Will Anderson has been playing the drums now for about seven months. He said he met Klotz at KCA and asked his parents, Zach and Karrie if he could play.

“I saw Mason and a few of my friends playing in the drumline and I met Ms. Shelia and thought she was really good and my dad asked if I could stay for practice,” Will Anderson said.  “Ever since then I’ve kept practicing. I’ve learned transitions and rudiments this week. I’m looking forward to showing them [parents] what we’ve been working on all week.”

Mason Currey, a rising seventh grader that is homeschooled has been playing the drums for about four years.

“I took this opportunity to practice more,” Currey. “I’ve improved so much I could take this to the next level. The drum solo I’ve learned; when I first saw it, I didn’t think I’d be able to but I just kept practicing it. Every time I got better and better and now I’ve gotten more confident.”

Rising sixth grader at KCA, Ben Santos said he just started on the drum set two months ago. First time to Klotz’s camp, he said he’s picking it up quickly.

“I want to thank Ms. Shelia for teaching me and working me hard on the drum set,” Santos said.

Klotz is also a member of the St. Mary’s County Arts Council and will be hosting The Drum Circle at Leonardtown’s First Friday on August 7 at 7:00 p.m.