Being a musician, I thought it would be interesting to write about the saying “face the music”. As we all know, the idea of facing the music means that you need to come clean about something that you did or take responsibility for your actions. Facing the music is not easy to do at times, but why blame music for our guilt?
The concept of facing the music stems back to war days when a soldier had been discharged and stripped their rank. This dishonor was known as “drumming out”; which often meant the soldier would have their final march to drums playing.
A dishonorable discharge was one of the worst things that could happen to a soldier; so when they were facing being “drummed out”, they had to come to terms with whatever actions led to their discharge. During the American Civil War, a soldier stripped of their rank was sent away on a horse facing backwards as the drums played. This put them in a position where they actually had to feel the burning or pitying looks of all their former brothers in arms while watching the drums play.