"Option to quit" for guitarists - how to do it tactfully?

larryace

"Uncle Larry"
I like what Brent and Andy said. Handled properly, you could make a real ally here. Handled improperly, it could blow up in your Slingbacked faces.

I like how Andy said to ask them what to. If it comes from them, they have no real reason to get pissed. Give them the power initially.

I like how Brent said to acknowledge them with some sort of gift or something to let them know how much they are appreciated, if in fact you do get new players. Let the carp guy know how thankful you are and if there's anything you can do in the future for them. Total diplomacy and tact. Stroke their ego while you're at it too, compliment their abilities if you mean it, it usually always disarms people and gets them to come around to your way of thinking.

Tact, the ability to tell someone to go to hell, and actually have them look forward to the trip.
 

JustJames

Platinum Member
Look, Lead, it's not working out and one of us has to leave.

It's not me.

Don't let the door hit you in the ass on your way out.
 

mikel

Platinum Member
Whatever yo do dont go with deps. Committed band members only. You need people committed to the cause, however small the cause may be. When gigs come up you need to be as sure as you can be that all the band will be available.
 

brentcn

Platinum Member
Whatever yo do dont go with deps. Committed band members only. You need people committed to the cause, however small the cause may be. When gigs come up you need to be as sure as you can be that all the band will be available.
There is just no way to guarantee that anyone will be anywhere when a gig comes up. Life sometimes just happens -- funerals, weddings, surgeries, etc. The band that can work with a sub is the band that keeps working.
 

Mediocrefunkybeat

Platinum Member
There is just no way to guarantee that anyone will be anywhere when a gig comes up. Life sometimes just happens -- funerals, weddings, surgeries, etc. The band that can work with a sub is the band that keeps working.
Absolutely. Serious working bands need a list of subs that they can rely on and reach quick and gentile agreements with. I was asked a while back to sub on bass for a wedding band and it was all very amicable - I didn't end up doing the gig (long story) but the whole affair was very amicable and it would have ensured they could have kept to their commitment. I'd happily do it if they ever requested it again. In this particular instance, their bass player broke his leg on holiday and they got in touch with me because the communication from the bass player was vague as to his condition. I was given a month but then told two weeks prior to the gig that the bass player had recovered sufficiently.

It's all about clear and honest communication at the first point of contact with a potential sub. Ambiguity is where the issues start.
 

KamaK

Platinum Member
In this case, the two original guitarists likely showed up for (presumably unpaid) rehearsals, helped get the music sorted out, and maybe made use of their connections to local venues to book gigs. These are nice things to do, whether cover band or original.
Indeed. I was more worried about the potentially co-written material than the social graces. In some bands, kicking a bass player results in having to drop a half-set worth of material they have rights to.
 

Mount Saint Elle'ns

Silver Member
There is a lot of good advice and good ideas here, so I'll just add that I think it's very important to be honest with them. I understand why you might feel uncomfortable talking about it, and why you prefer to say it in an email, but if you do it in person, and it gets awkward, just use that brilliant humo(u)r of yours to diffuse the situation! My usual comment when things get awkward, is "Okaaaay, soooo, this is what awkward feels like." And then I smile and laugh, and remind the person how it's going to be really funny by next week and excuse myself very quickly. ;)
 

Duck Tape

Platinum Member
All good advice already, you could also fake your own death and change your phone number.

Ahah. Maybe you should check to see if you are able to replace them? You might not be able to. You can just advertise for a "new project" and if they catch wind of it just say it's a side project of some kind.
 

Nictarine

Silver Member
Your best option is to be honest with him and let him know that you want someone who can devote more time to the band, trying to push him out or trick him into quitting is kinda sketchy.

The other thing you could do is find a sub guitarist to fill in when he can't make it and slowly just phase him out.

Good luck!
 

Magenta

Platinum Member
I suppose it is best done face to face - there's less chance of misinterpretation (and I can ply him with caek).

If I organise a rehearsal, that might actually prompt him to dip out, as he has a new baby.

Thanks to everybody for taking the time to reply. Hopefully I'll have a different guitarist to complain about before too long!
 

mikel

Platinum Member
There is just no way to guarantee that anyone will be anywhere when a gig comes up. Life sometimes just happens -- funerals, weddings, surgeries, etc. The band that can work with a sub is the band that keeps working.
If you read my post properly I said "As sure as you CAN be".

If you start off with a dep as a band member then when they are not available, and the ones in question never are, then you have a dep for the dep. How reliable is that?

Family and other issues happen, that's a given, but if someone is a committed band member they are much less likely to let you down.
 

KamaK

Platinum Member
I re-read the post again. What is preventing you from grabbing another guitarist? When that happens, the conversation goes like this:

You: We're playing at the Shitty Beatle next Sunday, you in or out.
Guitarist: I can't make it because my other band is playing at the Tractor Seat
You: That's great, we'll try to catch the end of your set once we're off stage.
 

Magenta

Platinum Member
I can't make it because my other band is playing at the Tractor Seat
How do you know where I live?!

Seriously though, I owe him too much to do that to him. I would rather give him the opportunity to leave. If he doesn't take that opportunity, however ... well, I will have to be more proactive.
 

Headbanger

Senior Member
All good advice already, you could also fake your own death and change your phone number.
Then Madge's twin sister Mags shows up at the funeral, inherits Madge's drums and decides to move to the area to start a new band. But she already has her own guitarist lined up. Of course, the grieving sister decides to call the band the Slingbacks as a tribute to Madge.
 

Mount Saint Elle'ns

Silver Member
Then Madge's twin sister Mags shows up at the funeral, inherits Madge's drums and decides to move to the area to start a new band. But she already has her own guitarist lined up. Of course, the grieving sister decides to call the band the Slingbacks as a tribute to Madge.
This really is the perfect plan, Banger. Which leads me to believe that someone might not be a total stranger to the whole, fake-your-own-death thing. ;)
 

Odd-Arne Oseberg

Platinum Member
Guitar players suck. That's why I started playing drums. Or was it because I was tired of crappy drummers.

Anyway. Honesty works best.
 
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