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  #41  
Old 06-10-2013, 03:50 PM
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Default Re: First Gig Blues

The Bangles weren't very good either and look, they got a record contract and made many Americans do stupid things like walk like an Egyptian ...

I'd say just have fun and do the best you can. And wow Barracuda? No way I'd attempt that one... :)
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  #42  
Old 06-10-2013, 03:55 PM
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Default Re: First Gig Blues

Mary, i'm pulling for ya and i congratulate you on your drumming journey.

Unfortunately drama is the norm.....seems like it's always the singer and the guitar player! LOL.

Don't sweat it.....learn and have fun!
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  #43  
Old 06-10-2013, 04:10 PM
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Default Re: First Gig Blues

Sorry to hear all this Mary -- but it does happen unfortunately... and trust me, 1/2 of most audiences couldn't tell a good band from a horrible one -- if they recognize the tunes and can sing along you'll have them on your side!!

Do the gig and get as much out of it as you can -- experience playing in front of people, experience trying to hold a band together rhythmically under trying circumstances and knowledge of what to try to avoid in future projects!

The one thing that I might try to get resolved if there's any time left at all is the dragging thing and the guitarist dictating the beat... that's just wrong. It shows their inexperience and might explain why they had difficulty with the drummer you replaced. That being said, get through it as best you can... a few people said and I'll reiterate, if you guys are all having a good time -- the audience will love you and have an equally good time.

Above all - don't let yourself be soured by this experience... you'll find folks that are on the same page as you (or at least in the same book) and they'll be thrilled to have someone so conscientious on board with them...

Plus, there's nothing like a good 'FIRST GIG' story!!

All the best -- you'll tear it up, I'm sure!
Peace,
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  #44  
Old 06-10-2013, 04:32 PM
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Default Re: First Gig Blues

A lot of good thoughts so far....both sides of the matter taken into consideration and personal experiences and whatnot, and though I don't have anything patently new to say, I guess I just wanted to say something anyway :)

A few years ago I started concentrating more on the acoustic guitar and singing (cringe), and I had a buddy who loved music but had no musical experience (or talent...not to be mean, just the truth) whatsoever; and he wanted to start a band. He was just so enthusiastic!!!!

So, I found a local drummer on Myspace who was pretty good, and the three of us got along great. I was writing simple but catchy little riffs, and the drummer and I were holding it steady enough, and my buddy was writing and singing about half the lyrics....and we were mediocre at BEST.

No bassist, only a handful of covers, and only about a dozen real rehearsals under our belt, and we signed up for a showcase...lmao, we were so caught up in having fun that we didn't really care how technically amazing we were...and we rocked! I mean, not really, but we all had a great time up there, and it translated directly to the audience. We had more people listening, looking, and moving around than any other band that night....playing a bunch of originals.

It was scary, but we all had friends there to support us, and even though we were the worst band to play that night, we got tons of compliments and everyone really had a great time. Afterwards, we watched the house video of ourselves, and we royally sucked!!! We all felt like we jumped the gun a bit, and should've put off playing until we were a bit better. But, we took the adrenaline from that performance, about three months of solid practice, a bassist, and gigged pretty successfully for a couple of years.

I guess that my point is, like many others have said, I think that you should go out there and have a great time!!! Cut loose, have some fun behind those cans, don't worry, and don't stop. Maybe you can use that post-show adrenaline to get them to take the band a little more seriously, and if not, you will have a great memory, and an excellent experience under your belt.
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  #45  
Old 06-10-2013, 04:32 PM
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Default Re: First Gig Blues

Like others have said, do the gig and see what happens. If it goes south, don't sweat it. There is much to be learned from this experience, and you'll be a better musician for it. You learn the most and grow the most when things are not going well, because now you know what situations to avoid and you get lots of lessons learned. You know in your heart that you put in the time to deserve the $100 pay - that's all that matters. After the gig, then you can make a more educated decision as to whether to stay with the band or not.
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  #46  
Old 06-10-2013, 04:45 PM
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Default Re: First Gig Blues

Have I told you guys lately how much I love all of you? Support, empathy, kicks in the butt, criticism, shots of reality...it's all here and I love every word of it, and I love all of you for taking the time to show me you care.

As Freddie Mercury says...The Show Must Go On. And it willl good or bad. Having your support makes it easy to just get out there and do it :)

And I promise I'll post any videos afterwards.
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  #47  
Old 06-10-2013, 05:57 PM
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Default Re: First Gig Blues

I'm firmly in the "do the gig and have some fun with it no matter what" camp. Then, after the gig is over, find another band.

Yes, band drama is a fact of life. I know this isn't a popular opinion, but I'll say it again because I know it's true. All of us musicians are basically about one thing: "Look at me!"

So, these types of things happen in a band. But do the gig. You'll take something from it. It will be a chance to get up and perform for others. Maybe some cats here don't remember their first gig. I do. It was a train wreck. Complete musical disaster. But I was no longer a rookie after that gig. I learned something from it. You'll do the same.

Sometimes, one of the most important attributes a musician can have is rising to a level of professionalism while everyone around you is sinking to new depths. This may just be a great opportunity for you to flex some of those chops.

Have a blast and tell us how it goes!
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  #48  
Old 06-10-2013, 09:31 PM
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Default Re: First Gig Blues

If you have room left to do any growing in this group, I'd stick with it while looking for something else. When you find that something else..make your move.
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  #49  
Old 06-10-2013, 10:16 PM
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Default Re: First Gig Blues

Who knows - maybe someone in the audience might recognize your talent as you stand out from the other non-talent, and this could result in another opportunity for you down the road.
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  #50  
Old 06-10-2013, 11:55 PM
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Default Re: First Gig Blues

I bet you understand that a % of your "gigs" will be poorly recieved...

Thats normal.

Once we drop the illusion that everything will always be perfect, perfection has a chance to take hold since expectation takes up less of your resources.

Have a great time..regardless of of the B.S. of percieved exterior evaluation.

looking forward to hearing how it goes/has gone....from your perspective...not anyone elses!

I'm betting it will be great!
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  #51  
Old 06-11-2013, 12:28 AM
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Default Re: First Gig Blues

Hi Mary,

So the gig's in two weeks. Are there to be any more rehearsals? Schedule one yourself, really try to do it, and make it a "drummer's rehearsal." Before the rehearsal make a list of everything you personally need to work on. Now at the rehearsal you need to be assertive. Be fun, be positive, but be assertive. Have beer for everyone. Go over all the tunes you need to, all the time making small suggestions and being organizational about it. This one's for you and you want to get as much out if it as you can.

Don't be too insistent, and don't try to fix everything. Just try to get your parts to the songs as ironed out as you can in the time allotted.

I've done this several times, and it's always worked, and it has the extra benefit of allowing the band to get to know you better. Also, in tightening up your parts you're also helping everyone else tighten up theirs.

It's worth trying, and it can't hurt. In these situations it's always better to do something, even if it's only trying. You'll feel better about yourself afterwards.

GOOD LUCK, AND BREAK A LEG, MARY!!!!
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  #52  
Old 06-11-2013, 12:28 AM
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Default Re: First Gig Blues

I firmly believe a band should not gig until being 'gig ready', but that term means differnt thinsg to different people.
I think I mentioned before......you committed, get to the gig, do it, and be done. Two weeks to go!
It may come all together, or maybe not, but either way it will be DONE, your first gig.
Then you decide on your standards and whether they are up to them. Honestly, they sound like disorganized losers. I know that empty feeling playing with such people.
Its all a learning experience, so enjoy the journey.
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  #53  
Old 06-11-2013, 10:35 PM
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Default Re: First Gig Blues

Okay...so things are getting crazier by the second around here.

Yesterday I sent10 songs that I had recorded the other day during practice to the lead singer to have her listen to them. With each one I listed what I thought we needed work on (intros, bridges, timing, etc) in a very non-threatening constructive way, making sure to point out my own faults as much if not more than others, and told her to let me know what she thought.

Today I get an email back and her only comment is..."I have mixed feelings about them."
I emailed her back and said can you clarify? She said it was hard to tell anything with the low quality recording (I just recorded with my little Alesis recorder but it's the same one I use to post my vids here so it wasn't THAT bad) and that since we were having sound system problems that day and the guitarist was all in a mood it wasn't fair to judge by that practice. Ugh!

But get this. Now she says the sound system is kaput and she wants to put off practice until she can get a new one (uhm gig is in 10 days). Wait it gets better....then she comes back and says that a "friend" of hers has asked us to play this Saturday night (no details about venue, time, nothing) and that if she can get the new sound system in time we can use THAT as a PAID PRACTICE!?!?!?!?!?!.

You've got to be kidding me! This gig may never happen.

Maybe I should have put this on the trainwreck thread since it seems to be headed that way BEFORE we even get to the gig...lol. I think I'm getting a migraine! :P
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  #54  
Old 06-11-2013, 10:53 PM
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Default Re: First Gig Blues

Hmmmm I guess its DOEs get better. Hang in there.
On the upside (if there is one) a paid 'trainwreck' of a practice on Sat night is better than an unpaid one.
It sounds like their bar is way below yours, so just do your best.
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  #55  
Old 06-11-2013, 11:32 PM
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Default Re: First Gig Blues

And the plot thickens :)

OK, she totally blew you off about your constructive suggestions for improvement at practice. A simple recording like the one that you made is a good tool to evaluate improvement needs.
That translates out to, She Doesn't Care!

A PA system very seldom goes completely kaput. Problems with a cable or a speaker are the usual culprits that can be easily repaired. Sometimes one mic/inst channel goes out.
If a PA head goes bad a used one can be readily found in a matter of hours.
You can even use a bass or guitar amp with an second speaker cabinet as a PA in a pinch.
I use a $900 Fender Passport Pro 500 in my home practice room and also at some small gigs.
You can't kill it. I sometimes hook larger speakers to the Passport head for a fuller sound.

Grabbing an interim gig this weekend is foolish. You will not fix any issues at a gig.
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Old 06-11-2013, 11:47 PM
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  #56  
Old 06-11-2013, 11:49 PM
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Default Re: First Gig Blues

Quote:
Originally Posted by MaryO View Post
Okay...so things are getting crazier by the second around here.

Yesterday I sent10 songs that I had recorded the other day during practice to the lead singer to have her listen to them. With each one I listed what I thought we needed work on (intros, bridges, timing, etc) in a very non-threatening constructive way, making sure to point out my own faults as much if not more than others, and told her to let me know what she thought.

Today I get an email back and her only comment is..."I have mixed feelings about them."
I emailed her back and said can you clarify? She said it was hard to tell anything with the low quality recording (I just recorded with my little Alesis recorder but it's the same one I use to post my vids here so it wasn't THAT bad) and that since we were having sound system problems that day and the guitarist was all in a mood it wasn't fair to judge by that practice. Ugh!

But get this. Now she says the sound system is kaput and she wants to put off practice until she can get a new one (uhm gig is in 10 days). Wait it gets better....then she comes back and says that a "friend" of hers has asked us to play this Saturday night (no details about venue, time, nothing) and that if she can get the new sound system in time we can use THAT as a PAID PRACTICE!?!?!?!?!?!.

You've got to be kidding me! This gig may never happen.

Maybe I should have put this on the trainwreck thread since it seems to be headed that way BEFORE we even get to the gig...lol. I think I'm getting a migraine! :P
Just wait till she tells you she has a friend of a friend of a friend that's a drummer and would like to sit in. LOL.
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  #57  
Old 06-11-2013, 11:56 PM
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Default Re: First Gig Blues

I wish you all the best but this so reminds me of another case a few years ago where one of our forum members was asked to join a band and practiced with them for months until right before the first gig and they let him go. he was being used. On the other hand maybe this chicks nerves are in worse shape than yours and just doesn't want to discuss anything because maybe she has no answers. Who knows. Just do your best, smile through it, go out and mingle during any breaks and see what happens..Good luck.
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  #58  
Old 06-12-2013, 12:20 AM
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Default Re: First Gig Blues

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Originally Posted by MaryO View Post
Believe me, I know that very well. I'm nothing more than a hack drummer tyring to keep a beat at this point. I just figured joining a band that had played together for 3 or 4 years I'd be the one with most of the flaws. It's just disappointing to find out they don't seem to have progressed from their starting point. Thats my main point. I want to join with people that can point those flaws out and say get your sh*t together or try this or have you ever thought about doing this..... I want to play with people that will force me to play better and go places I haven't gone before. I guess that's really the crux of this whole thing. Instead i'm the one saying, hey, there's a break in this song where the guitar drops out or there's a 4 beat measure between the verse and chorus that does this, etc...things they never thought of that are frankly pretty obvious. I never thought that I woud be the one pointing those things out.
It is surprising that you are the least seasoned and experienced member of the group and yet the one who has her act together the most.

It is really, really hard to find people who are at the same level, technically and creatively and organizationally. I'd say this has run its course. You really can't change other people so I'd start looking for other people to play with if I were you.
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  #59  
Old 06-12-2013, 12:42 AM
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Originally Posted by Deathmetalconga View Post
You really can't change other people so I'd start looking for other people to play with if I were you.
^This. But, having said that: that which does not kill us makes us stronger, and you are at your time of peak learning right now. And it sounds like these folks are freely dispensing the education, for better or worse. I think *the* most important thing for a musician is the seat time that only comes from getting out there and doing it. So these early gigs will be deals that will stay with you for a lifetime- and will sensitize you to the kind of crazymaking that you'll want to avoid in future efforts.

If it has gone south, already, it'll stay south, just as DMC says. But it's like the old Lazarus Long quote: "Certainly the game is rigged, but don't let that stop you. If you don't bet, you can't win!".

You've committed through the original date, so that is a done deal. Get out there, rock the hell out of this one or maybe two things with these guys, and leave 'em wanting more. Then you can decide which meaning of "leave them" is appropriate for you...
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  #60  
Old 06-12-2013, 12:52 AM
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Default Re: First Gig Blues

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Originally Posted by MaryO View Post
This gig may never happen.
Do you want/need some confirmation? Okay, here it is:

'That gig shouldn't happen. It's not meant to be. People will suffer and taste will die.'

You're welcome.

Do you want us to tell you that everything will work out fine, in the end?

Then give us something to work with... For example: 'I happen to like these people/the music/the drama/etc.'

You're welcome.

PS If I would be in this band of yours and read this thread, say, five years after we'd conquered the world... well...
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  #61  
Old 06-12-2013, 01:32 AM
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Default Re: First Gig Blues

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Originally Posted by Headshrinker View Post
Do you want/need some confirmation? Okay, here it is:

'That gig shouldn't happen. It's not meant to be. People will suffer and taste will die.'

You're welcome.

Do you want us to tell you that everything will work out fine, in the end?

Then give us something to work with... For example: 'I happen to like these people/the music/the drama/etc.'

You're welcome.

PS If I would be in this band of yours and read this thread, say, five years after we'd conquered the world... well...
I'm not asking for confirmation or for someone to tell me it's going to fine. I'm just giving an update for those who care. In the end, it'll work it out, one way or the other...no need to be snippy.

Thank you.
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Old 06-12-2013, 01:52 AM
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Default Re: First Gig Blues

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...no need to be snippy.
D#mn internet. I don't know you, and here I sit being wise (sort of) and... probably... snippy.

My apologies.

And, more importantly: good luck and enough fun in your gigging endeavours!

PS My 'point' re: you 'venting' about your band people on-line is not entirely off the hook, though. D#mn internet.
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  #63  
Old 06-12-2013, 02:39 AM
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D#mn internet. I don't know you, and here I sit being wise (sort of) and... probably... snippy.

My apologies.

And, more importantly: good luck and enough fun in your gigging endeavours!

PS My 'point' re: you 'venting' about your band people on-line is not entirely off the hook, though. D#mn internet.
Okay all forgiven. And I only rant here because I wouldn't do it anywhere else :)
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Old 06-12-2013, 02:40 AM
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Default Re: First Gig Blues

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Okay...so things are getting crazier by the second around here.
Sound like Rock 'N' Roll.

Quote:
Originally Posted by MaryO View Post
.... says that a "friend" of hers has asked us to play this Saturday night (no details about venue, time, nothing) and that if she can get the new sound system in time we can use THAT as a PAID PRACTICE!?!?!?!?!?!.
Find out more info. If it's simply a backyard/house party ..... and a bunch of people think it might be cool to have a band there while they get wasted ..... well, it might be (at least) a practice. Then again, if the whole thing is more bother than it's worth, hey, it's a last minute call on their part. Just tell 'em you have other plans.
As far as the gig in 10 days, just do your best and try to have fun. If anything, it's a learning experience. You very well might part ways with these people (and you'd be justified).
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Old 06-12-2013, 03:21 AM
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Default Re: First Gig Blues

One thing that's happening here that seems to happen often in web discourse is that previously-given info is forgotten. There should be no question that the gig is a goer. The band has previously been asked to return after playing at the venue with a lesser drummer.

It's obviously an easygoing crowd. It everyone manages not to chuck a Nellie on the the night of the gig and keeps up a party atmosphere it will go well.The party on Saturday will probably be a similar scene.

Having said that, playing with complicated people who don't listen or learn is ... character building ... which is a longer term consideration.

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Old 06-12-2013, 04:39 AM
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Default Re: First Gig Blues

Gosh Pol,

You've got 3 k to add to your 10 k (sorry Uncle Lar!). But I couldn't have said it better. It's not a first time gig for anybody except Mary.

Miss Mary-O,

Here on earth there is no 'perfect.' Get over it, and do your best. Worrying hasn't worked out for anyone. Your situation will work itself out - no matter how hard you try, something will go awry.

Listen to the big guns here - the folks you can trust. The best you have to offer is your 'best.' It changes from day to day - your're almost my age, and you know that.

Put away your fears. Do your best. On that day, at that time. Analyze what happenend. Then 'move out smartly' (like they say in the US Army). You'll know which direction to go.

Until I get your 'after action report', please know that I've got lots of confidence in your playing and your ability to 'adapt and overcome.'

Go for it, and have fun!

Best of luck, John
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  #67  
Old 06-12-2013, 04:58 AM
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Gosh Pol,

You've got 3 k to add to your 10 k (sorry Uncle Lar!). But I couldn't have said it better. It's not a first time gig for anybody except Mary.
Scary, isn't it? :) 54 posts and you sound like a veteran - excellent lurking, John!

I agree re: the party. When I think of some of the sloppy, caterwauling, brain dead outfits I played with in my teens that somehow managed to raise cheers from the audience I learned that at parties people are just glad to have some vaguely loud and upbeat RnR-like noises being made, especially when the songs are well-known.

The punters just want the band to party with them and to put the party event ahead of the band's Big Gig. Between songs announcements on behalf of the host or about other things happening in the party go down well. As do jokes. The last thing they want is a band that takes itself seriously and has obvious internal vibes going on. Smile smile smile - be silly, laugh, have a rage. No one will be playing for sheep stations ...

A few serious young insect musician types (most likely taking refuge in the kitchen or skulking in the smokers' pariah area) may well silently judge the band's playing ability but that only matters if you're ambitious, and even then not necessarily.
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Old 06-12-2013, 07:44 AM
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Default Re: First Gig Blues

Mary, the only thing you can do anything about is you. When starting out, you are going to find gigs with folks that are all over the map. It's the nature of playing music in public. Even at the 5 gig a week stratum, there are folks of all kinds. You do what you do and people will notice that. Sell the groove. Get toes tapping, heads bobbing and a few arses swinging. People will remember that there was this band that sounded like beginners, but the drummer sounded great and seemed to be having a good time. That leads to calls from better players, and so on.

There was a thread about some comments from Dave Grohl that people should just get some instruments and start playing them. And not worry about all the intricacies of it all. That he and some buds did that and did all right for them selves. I'm not sure I agree with everything he said, but it is a good point about getting in the water and swimming. That takes the learning curve of the formal studying you're doing way up there.

I have a woman friend who's learning drums and just hooked up with some other women, only one of which has any real gigging experience. She is actually the girlfriend of the guy who owns the Gretschs I'm playing in my avatar. He's teaching her to read and everything proper (he's a teacher and session guy by day) but she hooked up with these other women for the fun of it. Last weekend they did some tunes at a jam session and she was smiling like crazy even when they came in from a one bar break all jumbled. She said that she didn't let herself worry about it and just "owned" the song. She doesn't have any illusions about her playing, just that she decided to do the best she could do and not get uptight about it. I've seen her lock up before, but this time she just blew though the stumbles and pulled the rest of the band back on track. She was so jazzed about being in the zone it was great to see. It only gets better from here. And it will for you too.
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Old 06-12-2013, 02:43 PM
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Default Re: First Gig Blues

Mary, just because someone buys a guitar it doesnt make them a guitar player. same with a microphone, it doesnt make them a singer. I know you want to do the gig and thats fine, it just sounds to me like the other really dont know how to play or understand music at all. I like to be the best one in a band when the others are great, not crappy. It sounds like this gig will crash and burn around you and you may not like that in the end. Tell them to shape up and learn an entire set ( whatever that time for this gig is) and practice it in order untill the gig. If you guys cant get it togeather, dont do the gig. Think of the audience, would you want to sit through a total train wreck? Yes bands screw up songs but a whole set?? It sounds a little like these girls think the novelty of being in an all girl group is all you need but its more than that, you need to perform. My niece is the bass player for an all girl group Hunter Valentine. They are on tour as the support act for Cindy Lauper right now. CHeck them out online and show your band mates how girls can play and maybe they can get their crap togeather.
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Old 06-12-2013, 03:07 PM
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Default Re: First Gig Blues

Break a leg. Have as much fun as possible with cloths on. Hope and pray the others will rise to the occasion.


Peace and goodwill.
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Old 06-12-2013, 03:56 PM
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Default Re: First Gig Blues

Mary, I bet you are going to be the strongest player there by a country mile. Your colleagues are very fortunate to have somebody who'll do her damnedest to hold things together.
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Old 06-12-2013, 04:07 PM
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Default Re: First Gig Blues

Take advantage of the pre-gig gig. Gives you a good chance to work out the nerves for yourself and see how it'll be for the bar gig. It's a blessing in disguise.

I for one believe 10 mins of stage time is worth 10 hours of rehearsal.

Just get out there and play!
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Old 06-12-2013, 05:27 PM
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Default Re: First Gig Blues

Mary about the pre gig gig.... I'd probably do it. Hey it's more gig experience for you. After the originally booked gig is a memory, then re-evaluate if you want to stick around or not. You never know, at crunch time, your band mates might rise to the occasion. It could happen. Meanwhile, there's probably more good points than bad to have a paid "dress rehearsal".

Just don't let them rope you into booking any other gigs until after the original gig is played. You have to re-evaluate things after the original gig.
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Old 06-12-2013, 05:55 PM
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Default Re: First Gig Blues

Quote:
Originally Posted by Anon La Ply View Post
It everyone manages not to chuck a Nellie on the the night of the gig .....
okay, I need to get out my translation book.....LOL
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Old 06-12-2013, 10:15 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by inneedofgrace View Post
okay, I need to get out my translation book.....LOL
Can I borrow it when you're done? :)
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Old 06-13-2013, 01:14 AM
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Default Re: First Gig Blues

Sorry Yankee cobbers. I fair dinkum stuffed it with the slang. Just taking a gander at the situation I reckon youse bastards would've known that "chuck a Nellie" mean "have a tantrum".

:)
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Old 06-13-2013, 03:02 AM
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Default Re: First Gig Blues

Well Mary,

This thread really caught my eye as I am a fairly new drummer myself and am approaching our first gig (If you consider a kegger at my house that with a bunch of friends and family a gig) and we are two different ends of the spectrum.

I honestly can not wait to play. Mind you, we play mostly covers so far but do have 2-3 originals we have created (which is incredibly satisfying by the way). Ive always had a knack for the drums and my buddies encouraged me to get a set so I could play. I could never afford them until about a year ago so I took the plunge. As of two months ago, two of my buddies from high school and one of their friends came together to play(I am 25). It has been the most rewarding thing i've ever done. There is nothing quite like having fun with friends and playing cool music.

I guess what I am trying to say is try to get yourself in a situation that you enjoy ASAP. At the end of the day, that is what playing music is all about. Having fun, getting into the music, and hoping the people listening to you are enjoying the music.

That is the end of my rant!!!
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