Separates the men from the boys

Bo Eder

Platinum Member
I have this feeling this whole quarantine thing is re-sparking my former career as a one-man-band. Heck, it even makes sense during this time of social distancing. After July 4th's show, I've been fielding requests from the neighbors, and one inquiry asked about me doing a private event in August. But what really separates the men from the boys is the requests. How far will you go to play music? Being in a band is pretty easy when it comes to requests, you can either do songs as a group, or not. But in my unique situation, the audience knows there's not additional musicians involved to get anything together. Having a songlist that tops out at 250+ means I can seriously play for four hours straight without stopping or repeating anything, and still have songs I haven't had to perform. I was chuckling at myself when I looked at the list of songs the neighbors would like me to do at the next one:

Mandy
Copacabana
Pretty Woman
IGY
(Donald Fagen)
Tie a Yellow Ribbon

Songs asked for but turned down:

Flight of the Icarus (yeah right - Iron Maiden)
I write the songs

And oddly enough, somebody told me they liked what I was doing so much, they don't even mind the country & western!

You think having to muddle through Mustang Sally is bad?

I pat my self on the back for being able to enjoy it all and to deliver it with conviction, but this brings me back to my younger-stupider days when I wouldn't bite my tongue about what I thought of certain songs, and swore under my breath that I'd never do them. I think I even swore back then I'd never play country! And then Disney happened, where I was playing an upbeat "If I could talk to the animals" in cut time at least seven times a day (I swear reading stuff in cut time took me a while to get used to). And then hanging out with more educated working guys who would wordlessly ask me why I was playing so many ghost notes, or why my time wasn't better....etc.,.... Jeez, I think about those days and I'm so grateful people gave me a chance so I could learn how to keep my mouth shut and do the job! And I discovered that I worked pretty consistently when you worry more about playing whatever music you have to play right, rather than bitch about what you're not getting to play to show off how great you are. I count my self so lucky to be able to do what I get to do, and grateful to have done what I've gotten to do (I mean, who wouldn't want to put on a mouse costume and slam away on some drums for 45 minutes a day?)

Now that I've gotten that off my chest, I think I'll resurrect The Beer Barrel Polka and The Hokey Pokey too. Time to get back to work!

Playing-shot-1.jpg
 

rhumbagirl

Senior Member
I had a chance to play my practice setlist at a talent show at work one year. The night before the contest I set everything up and it worked fine. Two minutes before I was to take the stage the wireless headset failed. I had some instrumental music in my set that I pulled out and made my way through it.
I would say if you can drum and sing and get all the gear to work, including the wireless headset, then you've separated yourself from the boys. I don't care how short you are! :oops:
 

TK-421

Senior Member
I count my self so lucky to be able to do what I get to do, and grateful to have done what I've gotten to do (I mean, who wouldn't want to put on a mouse costume and slam away on some drums for 45 minutes a day?)
Do you seriously perform in a Mickey Mouse costume? I didn't know your job entailed that. I haven't been to Disneyland since I was like 12, so I'm honestly asking.

Just imagining it makes me think of this :)


Also, what do you have against Iron Maiden? Flight of Icarus is pretty bad ass!
 
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Bo Eder

Platinum Member
Do you seriously perform in a Mickey Mouse costume? I didn't know your job entailed that. I haven't been to Disneyland since I was like 12, so I'm honestly asking.

Just imagining it makes me think of this :)


Also, what do you have against Iron Maiden? Flight of Icarus is pretty bad ass!
Yes.

Nothing against Iron Maiden, but certain songs you can get by with guitar sounds approximated by synthesizer, and certain songs you can't. Most guitar-heavy songs, I avoid doing those as the OMB since the synthesizer does a poor job of covering the guitar. I could hire a guitar player to come in and play guitar for me and then record it into the computer and use that, but my head doesn't deal with that well. If I program a synthesizer to do something, I still have a chance to alter things on the fly. But if I actually record a guitarist, I'm stuck with that recording forever, and that feels too much like I'm playing along to a pre-recorded track. And to add insult to injury, I'm paying money for it!
 

mikyok

Platinum Member
I discovered that I worked pretty consistently when you worry more about playing whatever music you have to play right, rather than bitch about what you're not getting to play to show off how great you are. I count my self so lucky to be able to do what I get to do, and grateful to have done what I've gotten to do (I mean, who wouldn't want to put on a mouse costume and slam away on some drums for 45 minutes a day?)
Haven't done the mouse thing but hey if the price is right!

On a serious note that's my mantra, if you can make the clients hiring you happy and play for the music you'll never be out of paid work. All the years I've been doing covers means I've got hours of material stored upstairs including the dark places that I charge to access like Brown Eyed Girl ;)
 

NouveauCliche

Senior Member
I find it amazing that you know the lyrics well enough to sing lead on 250 songs.

Do you have like an ipad with lyrics or anything or are they from memory - that's wild.
 

Bo Eder

Platinum Member
I find it amazing that you know the lyrics well enough to sing lead on 250 songs.

Do you have like an ipad with lyrics or anything or are they from memory - that's wild.
Oh no - I’m old fashioned with a binder of lyrics! I could never remember all of them! I wish I could!
 

moodman

Well-known member
Oh no - I’m old fashioned with a binder of lyrics! I could never remember all of them! I wish I could!
a lot of wisdom in your post
I've found, when playing songs I could live without, the only thing to do is play it as if you loved it, give in to it and play drums like you know how.
I can remember lyrics without a cheat sheet, to a point. Most tunes no prob, but trying El Paso (Marty Robbins) I ran into a memory void after "out to the badlands of New Mexico". No matter how I try, I cannot get any more lyrics to stick after that.
You the man
 

GetAgrippa

Platinum Member
I could sing and drum as along as I don't have to know the lyrics and I'm allowed to just make it as go-per usual. I may be distantly related to Weird Al in making up lyrics-but never to the level of his genius-more like Tiny Tim I'd tip toe through the tulips LOL. But I think you're right Bo-I have piano, horn, guitar, friends doing the solo bit with some success so seems discriminatory to not include another percussion instrument-the drums. I use to do these jazz gigs at Art showings and people always gathered around watching all of us. You've got decades of experience-even a song you're not really that familiar I know you could handle-just feeling your way through it. You'd be DJ, singer and drummer-heck don't you play ukulele-you could play and sing Over the Rainbow and just blow them all away. I think you could entertain a crowd-no matter what they throw at you. in this instance it pays to be "old" cause you've heard about everything at least once LOL.
 

larryace

"Uncle Larry"
Believe me, I’d do it with a band if I could! But I do look at being able to put on a show without one as a blessing due to this pandemic. If this hadn’t happened, I’d be out playing with people.
Oh for sure.

I totally get it, and it's a good thing for your neighbors and general morale that you can do it.
 

GetAgrippa

Platinum Member
Oh for sure.

I totally get it, and it's a good thing for your neighbors and general morale that you can do it.
Dang Uncle Larry seems like a long time since we've heard from you-I was thinking of you the other day, for some reason, and I was wondering if you were OK-then I thought quit being a worry wart he's probably busy.
 

Bo Eder

Platinum Member
I could sing and drum as along as I don't have to know the lyrics and I'm allowed to just make it as go-per usual. I may be distantly related to Weird Al in making up lyrics-but never to the level of his genius-more like Tiny Tim I'd tip toe through the tulips LOL. But I think you're right Bo-I have piano, horn, guitar, friends doing the solo bit with some success so seems discriminatory to not include another percussion instrument-the drums. I use to do these jazz gigs at Art showings and people always gathered around watching all of us. You've got decades of experience-even a song you're not really that familiar I know you could handle-just feeling your way through it. You'd be DJ, singer and drummer-heck don't you play ukulele-you could play and sing Over the Rainbow and just blow them all away. I think you could entertain a crowd-no matter what they throw at you. in this instance it pays to be "old" cause you've heard about everything at least once LOL.
Thanks. But I’ve been able to do this for the last 30 years (the song list was 400+ then). I think it was just desire to want to go out and do something. And I learned this from a guitarist who was doing a MIDI act back then - it made me ask “why can’t I do that?” Instead of thinking I couldn’t do it, I just started doing it.

probably the same reason I don’t mind singing “Mandy” 😂😂😂
 

bud7h4

Silver Member
. . . . but this brings me back to my younger-stupider days when I wouldn't bite my tongue about what I thought of certain songs, and swore under my breath that I'd never do them. I think I even swore back then I'd never play country! . . . . .
Playing music like that is like having sex (for money) with someone who disgusts you. You look back at your "younger-stupider days"; instead I'd be asking "how did it come to this?" (I don't mean you, I mean if it were me)

Mark Twain said "find a job you enjoy doing and you'll never work a day in your life". If playing any music defines that job for you I can respect that and am happy for you.
For me, "a job you enjoy doing" means playing music that doesn't require me to "bite the bullet".

EDIT: yikes after rereading this post it sound kind of harsh, I don't mean it as a criticism. I actually think what you're doing is great Bo!
 
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rhumbagirl

Senior Member
Thanks. But I’ve been able to do this for the last 30 years (the song list was 400+ then). I think it was just desire to want to go out and do something. And I learned this from a guitarist who was doing a MIDI act back then - it made me ask “why can’t I do that?” Instead of thinking I couldn’t do it, I just started doing it.

probably the same reason I don’t mind singing “Mandy” 😂😂😂
Well I gotta ask, since drumming can be exhaustiing depending on the tune, do you find it challenging to sing and catch your breath? I would think that singing would inhibit oxygen intake much like talking with someone during a morning jog might. It would seem to me that heavy breathing with a headset mic would be an issue as well. Thanks
 

Bo Eder

Platinum Member
Well I gotta ask, since drumming can be exhaustiing depending on the tune, do you find it challenging to sing and catch your breath? I would think that singing would inhibit oxygen intake much like talking with someone during a morning jog might. It would seem to me that heavy breathing with a headset mic would be an issue as well. Thanks
I think, like anything else, it’s just another muscle you build up. At my age now, I’m able to put the four limbs on auto-pilot so I’m not exerting a lot of energy just to play while I use a lot of wind for singing, and other times I can cut loose on the drumming because the song has a lot of spaces to catch my breath (Mustang Sally actually has a lot of space between lines to breathe, whereas, any Billy Joel song I avoid because there’s too many words flying by!).
 
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