Drummer ponders next move after fire
A Kiwi drummer living in the United States is having to assess his future after losing everything in a house fire.
The fire destroyed the house Porirua-born Dylan Elise, 26, was sharing with others in Boston, Massachusetts, taking with it all his possessions, including a $30,000 drum kit.
Elise was touring California with 1960s jazz rock band Blood, Sweat and Tears, and his three housemates were at work when their three-storey home was destroyed within 20 minutes on Saturday. Three cars parked in front of the house were also wrecked.
‘‘I came back and there was just nothing left,’’ Elise said. ’’It’s been pretty devastating.’’
Now he is facing the decision as to whether to rebuild his life in Boston, or move to Los Angeles, where he also has friends.
The fire was so powerful it melted the forged metal cymbals on his custom Drum Workshop kit.
‘‘Good quality drums are expensive ... It was my dream kit, everything exactly how I wanted.
‘‘It’s going to be a long process getting things back together.
‘‘We’ve been making light of it, but we have nothing.’’
He felt grateful the explosion did not happen 12 hours earlier when his flatmates were home asleep.
Now they are sleeping on airbeds – ’’marae-style’’, he said – in a little apartment.
His housemates were involved with the band and so was the homeowner.
‘‘I’ve kind of been adopted into this family ... it was going fantastic. I’ve been in this band for about 18 months after moving here in February last year.’’
Elise grew up in Porirua and took up drums at the age of 6. He was performing in bars by the time he was 12 and became a reg- ular busker in Wellington by 14.
He was a busker at the Wellington Sevens, and toured with X-Factor finalist Mihirangi Mihi.
‘‘I moved here in the hope of being a professional drummer, moved here with no-one,’’ he said.
Touring has taken him all over the United States, to Canada, and Mexico. The band is planning to tour Australia next year.
The housemates have started the long process of claiming insurance. Fire officers are investigating the cause.
‘‘We’re just staying positive. That’s all you can do,’’ he said.
Drummer Dylan Elise lost everything when the house he was living in in Boston, Massachusetts, blew up on August 27.
Drummer Dylan Elise behind an expensive Drum Workshop kit before a gig with his band Blood, Sweat and Tears in America in May.