Bio: the doctor told my parents that my arm simply “stopped growing” very early in my formation in the womb. When I was 13 I asked my parents for drum lessons. My dad told me, "If you can figure out a comfortable way to use two sticks we'll put you in lessons." I went to the garage and got a roll of duct tape and the rest is history! I've been playing for 18 years--I've played with multiple band and I currently play for my church. I also started playing guitar at age 18 with a duct tape pick I fashioned. I'm so grateful for duct tape--it really DOES fix everything! ;)

Drumming Video 1

Drumming Video 2

Guitar Video

Comments: 115 • Responses: 22  • Date: 

calculuschild52 karma

Wow this is so inspiring! I have a 2 year old daughter with most of her right hand missing. She manages OK most of the time, but sometimes I worry about how she will do things like type or do her hair or play an instrument. Or share my passion for video games. Any advice for a growing girl?

freankine2125 karma

The best thing you can do for her is encourage her to do whatever she can! I was born missing most of my right hand as well, and i can type fairly decently, and i can game fairly ok as well!

abshow1 karma

I agree 100%!

abshow2 karma

Aw I'm so glad you asked! I've actually done many videos on how I do ever day things (including hair stuff and instruments) on my YouTube channel! Check this one out! :) Feel free to email me [[email protected]](mailto:[email protected]) if you need any other guidance!!

ps, the two comments below about gaming are spot on!

CaptainTwirl46 karma

Given you had the opportunity, today, to recreate a proper biological right hand, would you seize the opportunity?

abshow64 karma

Awesome question. I don't think I would. I started a YouTube channel several years. Sharing my life through videos has helped many people like me, particularly parents of little kids like me. I wouldn't want to close that door! YouTube/Abshow :)

CaptainTwirl16 karma

Follow up: Have you ever been feeling envious of people with two hands?

abshow32 karma

Every once in a while when attempting things like curling my hair... or monkey bars ;);)

LuckyNumberJack17 karma

How many cymbals have you broken so far?

abshow4 karma


rationak10 karma

Very impressive! Who is/are your favorite drummer/s?

abshow24 karma

Thank you! :) My original fav is Carter Beauford of Dave Matthew's Band. My current fav is Anika Nilles!

victoryvice20 karma


abshow7 karma


druumer897 karma

Carter is the man.

rationak1 karma

Very cool. I’m a musician of many years, mostly guitar and other stringed instruments, but also a passable drummer, although you’re better than me. Some of my favorites: Jaki Liebezeit, Sheila E, Al Foster, B.J. Wilson, Janet Weiss, Bernard Purdie, Dale Crover, Levon Helm, Terry Bozio, Ginger Baker, and Ringo. I could honestly go on and on, but... anyways cheers and keep up the great work!

abshow3 karma

Bozio is one of the most unique I've ever seen! And thank you--cheers!

swampcreek3 karma

I know carters neighbor. He is best friends with my cousin. He brought it up one night like its no big deal. Gave him tickets cause he had never heard of dave mathews

abshow1 karma

Aw that's so cool!!

Jumlee776 karma

Do you like John Bonham?

abshow5 karma

Yes, definitely!

TemptingTaurus735 karma

Do you have a favorite stick to play with?

abshow19 karma

Yes, 100%. I have been playing only David Garibaldi's signature sticks by Vic Firth for 15 years now. Maybe longer. They are light but a little longer than average which helps me tremendously on my right side!

riptide7475 karma

Can you play YYZ?

abshow4 karma

After many hours of practice, possibly! XD

noot3145 karma

When will you get the prosthetic shown on your Instagram?

abshow6 karma

Hopefully by the beginning of 2020!

afraidofthedrk2 karma

Did you ever face any harassment or bullying because of your missing hand? If so, how did you deal with it? Not music related, I'm just curious :)

abshow2 karma

Actually, no! I'm super extroverted naturally and love making people laugh, so making friends and helping them feel at ease was never difficult!

bowyer-betty2 karma

Is it "ab show" or "abs how?"

Also, weirdly enough I've always thought about this. I can't drum worth a fuck, but I play several instruments, including guitar and mandolin, and it's always been a no brainier that losing my right hand would be preferable to losing my left if I had to choose 1, even if my left is pretty much useless outside of music. You just confirmed/reinforced my belief that you could always just attach a pick to your arm and figure it out from there.

Who's your favorite artist/band and why is it Zeppelin?

abshow6 karma

It's ab show :) I'm glad to have helped you out with that thought! My favorite band lately is The Paper Kites, but I've always loved The National and Dave Matthews!

X-tremeMemeTeam2 karma

What is your favourite song to play and why?

abshow3 karma

Hm... lately a song I play at church called Awesome God--Gerald Haddon. So fun!

catmom815192 karma

Who/what inspired you to start playing drums?

abshow4 karma

My dad plays guitar and used to take me to music stores with him. I was always so intrigued by the drums there. Had to scratch the itch!

bluestardrummer2 karma

I found your youtube channel a couple years ago after I dislocated my shoulder and searched for one handed drumming hahaha. Anyway, my question is what is the best concert you've ever been to?

abshow1 karma

I love that you found me that way--haha!! Best concert... I think Lord Huron. Just exceptional performers and musicians all around. I would go to another show 100%!

totoro_332 karma

I've seen drummers lose sticks during performances. Has that ever happened to you and if so, how do you recover?

abshow2 karma

That's only happened like twice! I just try to keep the beat with my right stick and reach for the other. I broke a stick once but hand another nearby.

JamesMusicus1 karma

Have you ever explored (I'm getting the name wrong) open stance drumming? It's where you never cross over, playing hi hat with your left hand and snare with your right. Usually involves lowering the hat. I found that I greatly enjoyed the style when I got past the adjustment period and I thought it might be something worth looking into if you hadn't tried it.

My old drum instructor also had all kinds of weird equipment for reverse handed new drummers like a right side hi hat with a pneumatic pedal line so it could stay on the left.

abshow1 karma

Yes, I've actually practiced that a bit these past few years. It's getting easier! One of my fav drummers, Carter Beauford plays like that exclusively.

Ventrilokill1 karma

You are amazing! Who is your top 5 favorite drummers?

abshow2 karma

Thank you!!

Carter Beauford Anika Nilles Adam Tuminaro Tony Royster Jr. Questlove

Fjoergyn_D0 karma

Thanks for doing this AMA!

  1. Do you know Jason Barnes?
  2. I've seen that Unlimited Tomorrow has reached out to you to get you a prosthetic, which is really cool, but I haven't been able to find any video material of the Unlimited Tomorrow-arm actually working. Do you have any video of it in action, or can you tell me how it'll work?
  3. Why haven't you gotten a prosthetic already? There've been a few viable options on the market, from simple myoeletric hooks to the bebionic hand. Is it the price, or did you simply not feel the need for one, until UT reached out and offered one?

abshow2 karma

I actually had not seen Jason Barnes before! How cool!! Yes, I actually posted a video on my instagram last week of their latest and greatest in action-- @abshow :) I grew up using myoelectric prosthetics but dropped them about 8 years ago. Too clunky and unhelpful! Can't wait for the 3D printed though!

Thanks for the great questions!