I have carried a drum key on my keychain for as long as I can remember. If you’re clueless about drums, a drum key tunes the drums by tightening the rods and hoops that attach the drumheads to each drum shell. (see fig. 1)
When I first was learning, I carried one because it was cool to be a drummer, and cool to have a set of keys (for a car, I mean). I liked the fact that I could appear as a serious drummer who needed to tune so many drums, that I kept a key ready at all times.
Later, I did it out of necessity. During and after college, I was playing constantly, and the pouch in my stick bag was unreliable, so I had it where I always knew I could find one.
Today I keep one on there for all of the above reasons, plus I don’t think I would recognize my keychain without one. It is as much a part of my DNA as my hazel eye color, so I’m sure I’ll forever carry a drum key. It’s truly one of those lifetime habits I hope to never break, ‘cause if I did, it might mean I’m not playing anymore.
I think it looks nice with my Millennium Falcon charm too.