Dear Diary.

baz

Silver Member
...Hola Dot Comrades.

Last week I got a call out of the blue from a guitar player whose band is looking for a drummer. I don't know any of these guys, but was told that they got my number from a mutual friend, who owns a local music store, and runs a weekend warrior program. This group has been playing a blues, rockabilly, classic rock, heavy on the harmonies style of music for the past four years. Their original drummer retired and has moved to sunnier climes, so they are on the hunt for his replacement. They have had a few guys sit in, but have not been able to find a the right guy as of yet. The impression that I got was that this is my gig to lose. If I fit I am in. If not....

Tonight will be our first jam, which reminds me of my pre marital disaster of a love life. It has been a while since I have been on a blind date so to speak, and I have to admit that I am a little nervous. As I gaze through the blinders of the cart before the horse, first date optimism, the anticipation and all of the crazy paranoid thoughts, questions and emotions are bouncing around inside my melon like a handball in a handball court. My worries are not so much the music, it's more about the overall chemistry of the group, and how as the outsider I might fit into the mix.

I have had a few near misses with musicians, bands, jams that I did not post because of the spin and justification in having to explain why in some cases they have not worked out. Once again using the dating analogy it is like bragging about scoring a date with the reigning goddess then having the date become one of those public jokes when it goes embarrasingly of the tracks.I don't know how this one will work, but I wanted this thread to be my running comentary on the experience.

There have been a few band chemistry breakup animosity threads as of late, so my thoughts were that by starting this thread from the beginning, it may provide for an exchange of ideas and insights that may be of use to myself and others.

I am hoping for a long thread.

Barry
 

Paul Quin

Pioneer Member
Good luck! Be early, be cool, be accommodating, be confident and play for the tunes! Remember this is not the time to break out those blazing pardiddle triplets! You can often disarm others just by being easy to work with.

I look forward to hearing about future developments.

Paul
 

dairyairman

Platinum Member
i like the "first date" analogy! it sounds like they're already in an accepting frame of mind and like you say, the gig is basically yours, unless you come off as some kind of kook. i'd say just concentrate of having fun and playing clean grooves. if you do that you'll probably be in with them.
 

aydee

Platinum Member
...

“We judge others by their behavior. We judge ourselves by our intentions.”

Hola Barry,

you're the outsider, so be a good listener, be sensitive to each player, be friendly, be open, be someone thats willing, willing to please........in other words, be a Jack Russell puppy...

.. no, seriously.

Dont show off, dont be opinionated, dont be judgmental, dont solo ( unless asked..)

Just play the music and take it from there.

The rest will unfold as it will, and its not in your control, so dont sweat it.


...
 
...

“We judge others by their behavior. We judge ourselves by our intentions.”

Hola Barry,

you're the outsider, so be a good listener, be sensitive to each player, be friendly, be open, be someone thats willing, willing to please........in other words, be a Jack Russell puppy...

.. no, seriously.

Dont show off, dont be opinionated, dont be judgmental, dont solo ( unless asked..)

Just play the music and take it from there.

The rest will unfold as it will, and its not in your control, so dont sweat it.


...
Excellent, down-to-earth piece of advise.
 

baz

Silver Member
...thank you my friends.

No worries about any fireworks displays from me. If they want a ratamacue, they will have to settle for a barbeque.

Myself, I am auditioning them as much as they are auditioning me, and if we do not connect, it might be my decision. I do have a pretty good feeling about this going in, but I have to take it one jam at a time.

I think this first jam will be a feeling out, both musically and personally. From what I know of these guys, they are a pretty good bunch. No egos or rock start aspirations, just a group of weekend warriors with enough free time and disposable income to indulge in their passion. We are all around the same age, so that could be a positive.

once again, thanks for all of the positives. Please keep em coming.

Barry
 
Barry,

Don’t try and do things that are beyond you. Know your limitations and try to know what people want from you and You have got to go on as confident as You can be and basically do the job for the band, and entertain the audience.

Good luck mate,
 

mrchattr

Gold Member
Be yourself. So many people get nervous at auditions to the point where they can't actually be themselves, and the chemistry isn't there like it could be if you were together for a while. The best thing I ever did was wander in to my audition with Pulse (one of my current bands), and acted like we were all old friends. I was myself, 100% of the way, and we were all laughing and having a good time. I was pretty darn sure I was going to pass the audition before I even had my drums set up all the way, because of how much fun we were having.
 

G123

Member
Good stuff and thanks for sharing! BBQ! Hilarious! I hope we can all learn a little something through your experience. Your open-mindedness is much appreciated in the "band dynamics" line of threads...
 

baz

Silver Member
...thanks again guys.

I guess at this stage of my life, I am not as worried about being able to cut it musically as I am in getting along with the group. We are all around the same age, and grew up listening to a lot of the same bands, so a good chunk of this music is encoded in our DNA. I would be a little more nervous music wise if I were asked to join a heavy metal eighties glam rock band as I am not as spandex friendly as I once was, and I would have to shave my moustache to get that face pucker thing working.

As I said earlier, this first jam will likely be a feeling out. I have been in this situation before, and my philosophy is to just get a feel for the songs, work out the basics, then fine tune as the group tightens up and the song evolves. It is rare that I can play a song exactly as it was recorded. If that is what these guys want then this will be a very short thread.

I am in this for fun, first and foremost. That being said, I do take music seriously, but I try not to get too anal about it. I know that my name will never be mentioned in the same sentence as Steve Gadd, Ringo, or Neil Peart, unless they are passengers in my car, and my car goes over a cliff.

My excitement is building with each post.

Thank you all once again.

Barry
 

The Colonel

Silver Member
If they are playing original music, I would [personally] not listen to aydee's advice about not being opinionated. Don't be a jerk about it, but if you have good ideas, let them know - it's always been a plus in my experiences.

Take that, aydee! *kapow! kerblamo!*
 

larryace

"Uncle Larry"
Don't ask a lot of questions. You've been there done that.
Keep yourself reigned in. Restraint gets the gig. Just give them the best feeling groove you can.
Try to determine who the big dog is in the band, silently, and make sure you pay attention to that person.
Connect w/ the bass player on a non verbal level when playing.
Don't step on the vocals.
Try to find some humor sometime during the course of the night.
Make sure the tempos aren't rushed, don't try too hard.
Leave on a high note.
 

Ethan01

Senior Member
Even though you might feel out of place in a group of friends, they know you are new and they'll try to make you feel comfortable. So the only advice I could give is try to be yourself, that way you can honestly see if you gel with the others there, or if it'll feel like "work". I think if you have strong chemistry, it'll shine through in the music.
 

baz

Silver Member
...Thanks again for all of the advice guys.

It went very well last night. Any misgivings that I may have had before going in were quickly dispelled as soon as the handshakes were done. These three guys have been playing together for two years now. In their original form, two of the guys plus the retried drummer had played together for five. They are pretty laid back, and good humored, so there were a lot of laughs, stories, and a sprinkling of music.

We jammed at the house of the mutual friend who gave them my name and number, as he has a studio set up in his basement. This is where we will be jamming every Monday evening. I played the house kit, a Peavey Radial pro, but I used my cymbals. I wish that I would have brought my pedal, as I could not get a good feel from the one that was on the kit. I did not want to go nutty adjusting it as that is just bad manners.

Music wise, we were all a little rusty, but there is potential. I know that one jam does not a band make, but these guys are not looking for Ringo, they are looking for a like minded guy who can commit to one night a week. I told them at the start that they were not going to be awed by my playing, and that I would just find the pulse, play along, and tweak as I got more comfortable. They were happy with that, and I don't think I played more than four fills the entire night.

I have a good feeling about this, but I am not about to book the tour bus yet. I was in a similar situation some years ago where the first jam with a blues trio went really well. Everything clicked, the music was great, but the bass player decided that he wanted to be my best friend. This guy was, (using a term that my darling Wife coined ), a "small dose person". I was so sick of him after a week that I wanted no part of him or the group. That is also when I made a vow that I would never play with anyone that I did not want to know where I lived. I am not some in demand blazing chops monster, so I really have no right to pick and choose who I play with, but I am not a musical whore, I am a musical concubine.

All in all I am cautiously optimistic. These guys seem to be pretty open minded regarding material. They have some originals that will be fun to play, and I don't think they have an ego between them. That being said, like all first dates, you try to be at your best. Lets see how it goes after the honeymoon ends.

Barry

Time will tell if this works out.
 
T

TFITTING942

Guest
Great thread man. I hope it works out however is best for you. You are a little insane I think and as long as these guys don't have white coats and a giant butterfly net, it sounds promising!
 

Bruce M. Thomson

Gold Member
...Hola Dot Comrades.

Last week I got a call out of the blue from a guitar player whose band is looking for a drummer. I don't know any of these guys, but was told that they got my number from a mutual friend, who owns a local music store, and runs a weekend warrior program. This group has been playing a blues, rockabilly, classic rock, heavy on the harmonies style of music for the past four years. Their original drummer retired and has moved to sunnier climes, so they are on the hunt for his replacement. They have had a few guys sit in, but have not been able to find a the right guy as of yet. The impression that I got was that this is my gig to lose. If I fit I am in. If not....

Tonight will be our first jam, which reminds me of my pre marital disaster of a love life. It has been a while since I have been on a blind date so to speak, and I have to admit that I am a little nervous. As I gaze through the blinders of the cart before the horse, first date optimism, the anticipation and all of the crazy paranoid thoughts, questions and emotions are bouncing around inside my melon like a handball in a handball court. My worries are not so much the music, it's more about the overall chemistry of the group, and how as the outsider I might fit into the mix.

I have had a few near misses with musicians, bands, jams that I did not post because of the spin and justification in having to explain why in some cases they have not worked out. Once again using the dating analogy it is like bragging about scoring a date with the reigning goddess then having the date become one of those public jokes when it goes embarrasingly of the tracks.I don't know how this one will work, but I wanted this thread to be my running comentary on the experience.

There have been a few band chemistry breakup animosity threads as of late, so my thoughts were that by starting this thread from the beginning, it may provide for an exchange of ideas and insights that may be of use to myself and others.

I am hoping for a long thread.

Barry
No advice from me, you know what to do. I just wanted to comment that you are a good writer.
 
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