CHESAPEAKE, Va. — From hitting the cymbal to becoming a symbol in the fight against lupus, drummer Dion Langley is still hitting the stage.
"I wanted to express myself in a different and unique way," said Langley. "The way I do advocate, it really fits what I stand for."
Despite battling lupus, an autoimmune disease, Langley continued to perform and recently opened his own music studio in Chesapeake.
"My lupus had gotten so bad that the doctors pretty much told me I would probably never play drums again," said Langley. "You don't have the energy; you don't have the whole strength... I'm just fortunate and so blessed and thankful that now--2021--that I'm still here, still able to play drums, do what I do."
Since his diagnosis in 2010, Langley has been an advocate in the fight against lupus, even launching a clothing line to spread awareness. The apparel is available for purchase at https://drum4lupus.org/beatlupus-apparel.
"I said, I'm [going to] just put #BeatLupus on a t-shirt and just wear it on my chest," said Langley. "And it came to the point to where people started asking about it... So for me, it was more of a motivation factor."
Langley recently released his first song, 'Beat it Like a Drum', bringing his two passions together in perfect harmony.
"I'm beating drums like I'm [going to] beat lupus," said Langley. "I really wanted to just be myself-- have a song that explains me, but also gives my life story with dealing with lupus."
Langley said the song is his latest way of telling the world that lupus can’t stop the music.
"Drumming is my safe place. Drumming is what makes me feel on top of the world," said Langley. "So I had to take something that I really, really love and I truly, truly enjoyed to help me beat what I was going through."
To learn more about Langley, visit https://drum4lupus.org/.
'Beat it Like a Drum' is available right now on several streaming platforms, including the following: