Touring bands putting their set lists online

larryace

"Uncle Larry"
My wife goes to a lot of Country music concerts. And all the bands post their set lists online. I have to say, I'm not crazy about that. It takes any anticipation and surprise away from it. For me anyway. I guess since everything is so tightly run what with the lights and who knows what else they have to sync up with...It just makes things so predictable and it detracts for me.

Any thoughts on the subject?
 

opentune

Platinum Member
i would hate knowing what will be played.
i do like seeing a set list *after* the show, maybe next day.
 

BacteriumFendYoke

Platinum Member
Personally I like it to be a surprise. I don't even like it when bands announce the name of the song.

If it's posted afterwards, that's great. No problem. Beforehand? Not for me.

With big shows most of the time the songs are bound to be pre-planned, pre-arranged and lighting/pyro/sound cues set up in advance. I have no problem with that - but even though the band and crew know what is being played beforehand, I don't think the audience should...
 

Push pull stroke

Platinum Member
Symphony orchestras post their concert lineups a year in advance or more, many times. I'm just saying.

Maybe there could be some unlisted surprise songs in addition to the posted ones.
 

Midnite Zephyr

Platinum Member
That's cool that Country music artists do that because usually they only have one good song, and you can see if that song is being played early or later in the set so you know when to show up for the show.
 

larryace

"Uncle Larry"
To me it's like posting online exactly what I'm going to do to my wife when I have sex with her, and have her read it beforehand lol. There's a lot to be said for the surprise factor. When I know exactly what song is coming next...there's no adventure in it for me. Of course the band has to know the order of the tunes, but geez, keep it from the audience.

Also, what Paul said, people can show up to the concert when the good songs are played.....this could possibly subtract revenue from the venue...people coming late, leaving early....If I was the venue owner, I wouldn't allow it.

What's next, revealing the end of the movie before you watch it? No thanks, I'll pass!
 

BacteriumFendYoke

Platinum Member
Symphony orchestras post their concert lineups a year in advance or more, many times. I'm just saying.

Maybe there could be some unlisted surprise songs in addition to the posted ones.
That is different, though. Orchestras play a wide range of music from a long historical period. Sometimes you might want to see Mahler, or Messiaen and the opportunity to see it live is very limited so you have to know in advance. If you want to see Beethoven or Mozart it's easier but the prestige of the orchestra in question persuades you to see it.

Say the CBSO or London Philharmonic are playing Beethoven's 9th, then I would be buying tickets if I could go. If they're playing Mozart, I'm not so bothered. Brahms Requiem? Yes please. Ligeti? Yes!

The repertoire of the orchestra is much more likely to persuade. If you're going to see a particular band then you are going to see that particular band. If you're going to see an orchestra, the repertoire they perform is more important to your decision.

I could go up to Covent Garden (or the Albert Hall, for that matter) every night if I had the money (I live near London) but the last time I went was to see The Rite of Spring performed as a ballet. It was all about the piece of music being played.
 
T

The SunDog

Guest
It's every band now, from arena acts to bands that tour at the club level. Social media has left us a transparent world with few privacies. When I saw Queens of the Stoneage my girlfriend was yelling out every song before it started. When we went to the Eagles of Death Metal the band new who she was from Facebook. They knew we were coming (and we're very cool BTW). It's just the way of the world now.
 

Stroman

Platinum Member
To address the OP more seriously, I have a couple of thoughts.

First, most bands that are touring at that level have a good fanbase, and likely an active fan presence online. Those fans are going to share setlists and other info about the tour. Human nature. I've seen it a lot. So even if the band didn't post the setlist, the info will be out there anyway.

Second, if you don't want to know, don't click the link, lol. Having the setlist online meets the needs of people who want to know, and doesn't harm those who want to be surprised, so I think it's a total non-issue.
 

larryace

"Uncle Larry"
To address the OP more seriously, I have a couple of thoughts.

First, most bands that are touring at that level have a good fanbase, and likely an active fan presence online. Those fans are going to share setlists and other info about the tour. Human nature. I've seen it a lot. So even if the band didn't post the setlist, the info will be out there anyway.

Second, if you don't want to know, don't click the link, lol. Having the setlist online meets the needs of people who want to know, and doesn't harm those who want to be surprised, so I think it's a total non-issue.
Good point. But for the people who don't want to know what's coming next, invariably, someone will let on and I'll over hear it. I think bands should change their set lists for each show. I know that involves sync issues, but I don't care, that's their issue to solve. That way each show is sort of unique, not the same exact show 60 times.

Cookie cutter shows, devoid of any spontaneity or surprises... yea give me more of that!

Not.
 

BacteriumFendYoke

Platinum Member
Unfortunately Larry, changing setlists on a big arena show (with lighting, etc.) would most likely require more rehearsal time. That means paying the crew, etc. quite a bit more and these days, bands don't make much on those shows.

I've been running sound on a small production this week at work. Just eight radio mics and some sound effects - nothing difficult at all. Even then, we needed rehearsal time and time to iron out the bugs. My script is absolutely full of highlights, ad-hoc notes that I've made on trickier cues (offstage, sudden, after long stage directions, etc.). Now if I had been doing the equivalent on an arena rock show with a lot more to mix and they decided to change it up very quickly, that would definitely be a pretty serious challenge. If you went into a theatre and told the crew that you're tacking on a new song onto the end of the show but to just go with it, you'd have a lot of very unhappy crew - because they get blamed whenever there are issues, typically when they're the last to know and the least at blame...

A good engineer will be able to do it but getting everything sync'd up when you're running pyro, lighting, visual effects and sound (and the rest) on a rock show (as opposed to a gig) does take rehearsal and it does take a lot of planning.

Whether or not you agree with the show way of doing things is altogether another matter. Bands that have minimal or more abstract lighting, fewer instrumentalists, etc. can do it no problem. I like that. Shows are somewhat different, though.
 

SteveRatz

Member
I would hate to know the songs beforehand, but sometimes I wished I could recall an unexpected song title the next day. In the same way I might look up a radio shows playlist after listening.
 

bermuda

Drummerworld Pro Drummer - Administrator
Staff member
That way each show is sort of unique, not the same exact show 60 times.
When you go to see a Broadway show, do you expect it to be different each time? Some musical performances are shows, some are concerts. There's a difference.

Many artists/bands change their sets each night, at least somewhat. There are certain songs that must be played, and a concertgoer should expect to hear them, assuming the band cares about the people who pay to see them.

With respect to set lists, even if the band doesn't post them, the fans will. For a band that changes up their set each night, it doesn't really matter anyway. But for a band that does a show, it's completely their call whether they want to post their set. If you don't want to know, don't click on the SET LIST link on their site, and don't visit setlist.fm

We never posted our current tour's set online, although the fans often did. Although the info was out there, and completely correct, at least it wasn't coming from us. However, once that tour was done, the set would be posted and served as an interesting look back at previous tour's songs, which often led to fan requests to bring certain songs back. And, we sometimes listened!

Bermuda
 

Superman

Gold Member
I've seen bands play two nights in a row (different cities) and the second show wasn't ruined cause I heard the act the night before and knew what the encore was. Who cares?
 

bermuda

Drummerworld Pro Drummer - Administrator
Staff member
Knowing what you're going to hear may also be a benefit.

Suppose you wanted to see Bob Dylan, who's touring to promote his new album. Obviously the new songs will be highlighted, but you'd expect him to also play some of his classic hits, right? You go to the concert and are disappointed that he played exactly two hits, and the rest was all new material.

Wouldn't it have been helpful to know up front that you'd be paying $75 to hear only two familiar songs?

Bermuda
 
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