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Old 07-26-2017, 05:51 PM
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Default Need advice - quitting a band that I'm the co-founder of

Guys, don't know if any of you have been through this, but some advice is certainly needed. For the most part I have the emotional sensitivity of "Dirty Harry" from the Enforcer - that's not always a good thing... :)

Anyway, I co-founded this original band and took care of the website (i created it), digital booklets, FB, artwork, mastering, and etc., etc. - you get the idea.

Well after 5 years and two albums of hard work, our turnout at shows is low - only friends or family, no fans. Our only fans are from internet radio - abroad or out of state (We are in New Jersey). Now they want to do a 3rd album. Oh, and BTW, I put up the money for CD duplication, the website, and USB wafer duplication and they took their time in paying me back.

I'm very proud of what we made, but it's time to bail, it's costing a lot of money and there's no return. I just got the nod from an incredible metal band who called me - I'm taking it.

Now, how do I get out of this nicely, especially with the founder - he's a great friend and "brother from another mother", but I'm just done.

Any advice would be helpful - like i said, I'm no good at the "feely" stuff.
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Old 07-26-2017, 06:04 PM
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Default Re: Need advice - quitting a band that I'm the co-founder of

You could do the metal band, and tell the other guys that it's their turn to run the show. Show up and record. What if they did it without you and it turned out great...you may kick yourself.
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Old 07-26-2017, 06:11 PM
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Default Re: Need advice - quitting a band that I'm the co-founder of

All things end and almost always end badly. Show them the books. Explain that no business (and it is business) can operate in the red in perpetuity. You are all adults.
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Old 07-26-2017, 06:11 PM
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Default Re: Need advice - quitting a band that I'm the co-founder of

Other than Larryace's alternative, honesty is always the best/easiest policy. Basically, tell them exactly what you wrote in your post. Who wouldn't understand that?
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Old 07-26-2017, 06:28 PM
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Default Re: Need advice - quitting a band that I'm the co-founder of

To me this is tough but beating around the bush or delaying the inevitable makes it worse. Find a date, send a letter to all and inform them that you are leaving, but first tell them all in person. Short and sweet, you want other things, this is causing financial burden, and leave it at that.
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Old 07-26-2017, 06:40 PM
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Default Re: Need advice - quitting a band that I'm the co-founder of

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Originally Posted by larryace View Post
You could do the metal band, and tell the other guys that it's their turn to run the show. Show up and record. What if they did it without you and it turned out great...you may kick yourself.
That's an interesting take, and I just might do it. I really hope things turn out great for them without me, I hopethey break even some day.

For me. it's not about money or anything material. It's about playing music for people who like it - to actually have an audience, not just your friends and family.
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Old 07-26-2017, 06:43 PM
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Default Re: Need advice - quitting a band that I'm the co-founder of

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To me this is tough but beating around the bush or delaying the inevitable makes it worse. Find a date, send a letter to all and inform them that you are leaving, but first tell them all in person. Short and sweet, you want other things, this is causing financial burden, and leave it at that.
Thanks for the good advice so far guys. I'm starting to lean towards GruntersDad's advise - setting a date, tell in person and write a professional letter.
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Last edited by JosephDAqui; 07-26-2017 at 07:46 PM. Reason: Spelling error
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Old 07-26-2017, 06:51 PM
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Default Re: Need advice - quitting a band that I'm the co-founder of

Yup, setting a date is a good idea.

If you really want to rip the band-aide off, just call each person individually today, and sleep better tonight. I'd end with something like, "I want to see you guys keep going!"

You may be amazed at how well other musicians respect honesty. I know I do, even when it's info I don't want to hear.
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Old 07-26-2017, 06:55 PM
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Default Re: Need advice - quitting a band that I'm the co-founder of

Lay It On The Line.

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Old 07-26-2017, 07:17 PM
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Default Re: Need advice - quitting a band that I'm the co-founder of

I completely understand what you mean about the audience. My pleasure comes less from the act of playing the drums and more from seeing an audience enjoy themselves. As long as I'm not being ripped off by the pub then it's irrelevant whether or not they're paying at the bottom or top end of the going rate.

In terms of your dilemma, not much to add. Your reasons are very well put forward and understandable. If it was me I'd omit the parts about putting the money up, that might lead to raised voices or might lead to them calling your bluff and saying if that's the only issue then they'll put the money up this time. What it boils down to is a lot of work and effort with no tangible results in terms of an audience, no one can be expected to keep grinding out gigs and albums for such little reward. As band splits go this is one of the most amicable and least fraught I've ever read about.
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Old 07-26-2017, 07:23 PM
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Default Re: Need advice - quitting a band that I'm the co-founder of

I've seen lots of bands just dial it back when they still like the music and friends but don't have time or want to commit to other things.

See if they're game to do a once a month practice and a few gigs per year? The other benefit to few gigs is that often you can get more people to come to them all since they aren't burned out on your constant "hey, so there's a gig next week!" announcements.

But if you don't want that, then I think you'll just have to be the guy who steps out. Expect and encourage them to get another drummer and move forward!
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Old 07-26-2017, 07:35 PM
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Default Re: Need advice - quitting a band that I'm the co-founder of

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Originally Posted by JosephDAqui View Post
Any advice would be helpful - like i said, I'm no good at the "feely" stuff.
In a very real sense, this band is the platform upon which you have built your reputation, and the COLLECTIVE effort -- not just yours -- has helped you to get the attention of another project. So, any and all communication toward the band should start with a sincere and honest "thank you". Anything less, and you're being a d**k. You don't need to mention that you've worked harder than others (even if you feel it's true), or how much you've invested relative to others. You just need to say thank you, and, for the time being, goodbye, not to the friendship, but to the act of making music together.

Just because you're walking away, doesn't mean you have to hold up your middle finger while doing it.
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Old 07-26-2017, 07:44 PM
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Default Re: Need advice - quitting a band that I'm the co-founder of

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In a very real sense, this band is the platform upon which you have built your reputation, and the COLLECTIVE effort -- not just yours -- has helped you to get the attention of another project. So, any and all communication toward the band should start with a sincere and honest "thank you". Anything less, and you're being a d**k. You don't need to mention that you've worked harder than others (even if you feel it's true), or how much you've invested relative to others. You just need to say thank you, and, for the time being, goodbye, not to the friendship, but to the act of making music together.

Just because you're walking away, doesn't mean you have to hold up your middle finger while doing it.
Excellent advice - thank you.That was my intention, just to say thanks and not bring up anything negative - the facts speak for themselves and I don't need to remind anyone or bring up the fact that there are no local fans.

Thanks again, this is how I will make the face-to-face meeting.
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Old 07-26-2017, 07:47 PM
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Default Re: Need advice - quitting a band that I'm the co-founder of

Wouldn't it be interesting if some of them were on other forums, or talking to other friends, about how to quit, too?

But if the opposite is true, and some push you to stay, be ready to stand your ground, without being a d**k, as some have already said.

My strangest band-quitting experience was when I called the singer to quit. I just said that it wasn't working out, and didn't mention my frustration of his inclination to set 2:00pm rehearsals, when he doesn't like to get up before 5:00pm, and he always complained as if I were the one forcing him.

Anyway, when I told him that I was quitting, he got really concerned. "No, please don't quit. Give it some time. It's only been a few weeks. Being in a new band is like dating a new woman. You have to take your time, get over some road bumps, figure each other out. When you let it all go and put forth your best, you'll be surprised at what can come your way. Great things will happen with us.

I gave in and said I'd stay.

Two hours later, he called to "fire" me because "it wasn't working out."

Fragile egos, I swear.
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Old 07-26-2017, 07:52 PM
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Default Re: Need advice - quitting a band that I'm the co-founder of

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Wouldn't it be interesting if some of them were on other forums, or talking to other friends, about how to quit, too?

But if the opposite is true, and some push you to stay, be ready to stand your ground, without being a d**k, as some have already said.

My strangest band-quitting experience was when I called the singer to quit. I just said that it wasn't working out, and didn't mention my frustration of his inclination to set 2:00pm rehearsals, when he doesn't like to get up before 5:00pm, and he always complained as if I were the one forcing him.

Anyway, when I told him that I was quitting, he got really concerned. "No, please don't quit. Give it some time. It's only been a few weeks. Being in a new band is like dating a new woman. You have to take your time, get over some road bumps, figure each other out. When you let it all go and put forth your best, you'll be surprised at what can come your way. Great things will happen with us.

I gave in and said I'd stay.

Two hours later, he called to "fire" me because "it wasn't working out."

Fragile egos, I swear.
Wow! Really??? I've heard about some headcases in the past from other musicians I know, but I never heard of that one. Holy crap... Thanks for sharing, my task doesn't seem so difficult anymore.
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Old 07-26-2017, 08:38 PM
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Default Re: Need advice - quitting a band that I'm the co-founder of

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Originally Posted by JosephDAqui View Post
That's an interesting take, and I just might do it. I really hope things turn out great for them without me, I hopethey break even some day.

For me. it's not about money or anything material. It's about playing music for people who like it - to actually have an audience, not just your friends and family.
I only said that because it's an original band. Don't want to be a form of Pete Best.
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Old 07-26-2017, 10:25 PM
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Default Re: Need advice - quitting a band that I'm the co-founder of

If you feel its over for you then its over. Just be honest with your mate, and tell him how you feel. Its not about being feely its about being honest, most people are OK with honesty, especially good friends. Tell him how it is.
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Old 07-29-2017, 04:16 AM
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Default Re: Need advice - quitting a band that I'm the co-founder of

I agree that being up front is the way to go. I would offer to play all gigs already booked and fill in if I could until the new drummer is online.

Keeping things civil could pay off in the long run...the music biz can be a small world.
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Old 07-29-2017, 04:39 PM
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Default Re: Need advice - quitting a band that I'm the co-founder of

On a side note, Yoko Ono is single. Give her a call.
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Old 08-04-2017, 05:36 PM
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Default Re: Need advice - quitting a band that I'm the co-founder of

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I agree that being up front is the way to go. I would offer to play all gigs already booked and fill in if I could until the new drummer is online.

Keeping things civil could pay off in the long run...the music biz can be a small world.
Well, it's done and I did exactly that - told them I will help out until the new drummer is in the band and offered to help find him/her.

Just like in most situations - honesty is the best policy and they completely understood.

If anyone on this forum is interested in joining an original rock/funk band in NJ, check out http://lion-hearted.us/ and let me know and provide links to your playing. If it's good, I'll forward your information.
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Old 08-04-2017, 05:39 PM
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Default Re: Need advice - quitting a band that I'm the co-founder of

Glad to hear that it got worked out!
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Old 08-05-2017, 03:47 AM
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Default Re: Need advice - quitting a band that I'm the co-founder of

I was going to reply and give the advice that you handed out. It's always better to lay it out like that no matter what the situation because if you don't you are wasting other people's time.

You just described a band that I'm in to the T! Great people and players but no followers. I do it because I love it and have the time, but would leave if that love was going stale (just like I would with a woman), but that honesty will keep the relationship strong (unless they are crazy). That will always leave the option to come back for some regular or spotty play!
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Old 08-07-2017, 06:30 PM
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Default Re: Need advice - quitting a band that I'm the co-founder of

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You just described a band that I'm in to the T! Great people and players but no followers. I do it because I love it and have the time, but would leave if that love was going stale (just like I would with a woman), but that honesty will keep the relationship strong (unless they are crazy). That will always leave the option to come back for some regular or spotty play!
Ah, then you know exactly what it's like - it was one of the hardest things I had to do since they are probably 2 of the best musicians I ever had the honor to play with - hands down best bass player ever!

AS much as I loved playing that music (funk/hard rock/metal), the metal side basically won out, it's what I listen to on my free time (Meshuggah, Lamb of God, Overkill, Uneven Structure, etc.) and I really enjoy the physical, brutal end of playing it and the adrenaline you get from it.

Neil Peart's story in the recent Rush documentary "Time Stand Still" really got me and helped me make my decision - I'm middle aged and the clock is ticking on how long I can play the way "I" play - heavy hitting and fast/hard double bass. SO, if I decided I'm gonna go out in flames! Brutal metal! Hopefully, like Neil, I can last to 64/65 playing at this intensity, I'll certainly keep up my health and fitness routines.

Thanks to all for your advice - it was a big help, I'm so glad this forum exists.
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Old 08-08-2017, 06:11 PM
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Default Re: Need advice - quitting a band that I'm the co-founder of

Thanks for sharing such a personal challenge and well done finding the right way through, following your heart's true desire. Best of luck with the new band - do let us hear and see your metal drumming!
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Old 08-09-2017, 12:55 AM
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Default Re: Need advice - quitting a band that I'm the co-founder of

Just tell them you're taking a break from the band to try something new. Then they can either wait to see if you last with the new band, or they can find a replacement.
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Old 08-10-2017, 03:01 PM
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Default Re: Need advice - quitting a band that I'm the co-founder of

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Originally Posted by JosephDAqui View Post
Guys, don't know if any of you have been through this, but some advice is certainly needed. For the most part I have the emotional sensitivity of "Dirty Harry" from the Enforcer - that's not always a good thing... :)

Anyway, I co-founded this original band and took care of the website (i created it), digital booklets, FB, artwork, mastering, and etc., etc. - you get the idea.

Well after 5 years and two albums of hard work, our turnout at shows is low - only friends or family, no fans. Our only fans are from internet radio - abroad or out of state (We are in New Jersey). Now they want to do a 3rd album. Oh, and BTW, I put up the money for CD duplication, the website, and USB wafer duplication and they took their time in paying me back.

I'm very proud of what we made, but it's time to bail, it's costing a lot of money and there's no return. I just got the nod from an incredible metal band who called me - I'm taking it.

Now, how do I get out of this nicely, especially with the founder - he's a great friend and "brother from another mother", but I'm just done.

Any advice would be helpful - like i said, I'm no good at the "feely" stuff.
I'm a shithouse....I'd email them :-)
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