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  #1  
Old 03-23-2019, 09:05 PM
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Default Stage Etiquette article

My latest article published by Music Connection is now available online. You can also read it in the March issue.
"Know Your Stage Etiquette!"
https://www.musicconnection.com/tip-...6vEeUBuK5Sx2wo

You can also read some of my previous articles at the following links:
“Find & Keep A Great Drummer”
https://www.musicconnection.com/find-great-drummer/

“How To Be A Professional In 6 Easy Steps”
https://www.musicconnection.com/care...-6-easy-steps/
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  #2  
Old 03-24-2019, 12:58 AM
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Default Re: Stage Etiquette article

I agree with the obvious things like keeping the stage a little clean from annoying cables and, what you have not mentioned, to never make clear that another bandmember made a mistake..

That being said, i think musicians should stay themselves as much as possible, instead of being busy with how they are supposed to act or behave..

I like bands who will not confirm too much to certain 'rules'..

Things depend also a little on the sort of band ofcourse..Like, when i go see Steely Dan, i want to see a perfect performance, but when i go see a Punk/Noise or even Jazz band, i prefer to see bands that are not afraid to take risks..I like artists who are completely into the performance, without caring about anything else..

Concerts where bands act completely according 'proper professional stage behaviour' are oft also kinda boring ones..

Last edited by oldskoolsoul; 03-25-2019 at 12:56 AM.
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Old 03-25-2019, 05:03 AM
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Default Re: Stage Etiquette article

Good article Nick!

......
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  #4  
Old 03-25-2019, 05:05 AM
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Default Re: Stage Etiquette article

Though I would add "bring your own damn extension cords!!!"

I can't tell you how many times the guitarist or bassists (or both) need an extension cord to plug in their amps/pedals/whatever, and need to borrow one. Ugh!
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Old 03-25-2019, 05:41 AM
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Default Re: Stage Etiquette article

Well written article man, but I wonder who your audience is. Some of it is very beginner stuff (tuning pedals, hand signals) and then some is directed toward bands playing large gigs (stage entry, no band name).

Most the gigs I attend (and play) are in small clubs or bars with 50-100 people. We have no choice where to enter the stage, we constantly banter (or fight) with the crowd and each other, and with 4 or 5 bands on the bill, saying your band name is super important. Many of the things you say are useful for the young bands we play with, so no doubt its useful there. I just wonder if the message isn't aimed at too broad an audience.
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Old 03-25-2019, 05:42 AM
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Default Re: Stage Etiquette article

Quote:
Originally Posted by DrumEatDrum View Post
Though I would add "bring your own damn extension cords!!!"

I can't tell you how many times the guitarist or bassists (or both) need an extension cord to plug in their amps/pedals/whatever, and need to borrow one. Ugh!
Interesting...on most stages there are only so many places where plank wankers can be expected to set up. Is it too much to ask that there be power already there?

The point I would have liked to have seen in the article, is this:
If another band is to play after you, clear out as quickly as you can!
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  #7  
Old 03-25-2019, 11:41 AM
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Default Re: Stage Etiquette article

Quote:
Originally Posted by JustJames View Post
Interesting...on most stages there are only so many places where plank wankers can be expected to set up. Is it too much to ask that there be power already there?

The point I would have liked to have seen in the article, is this:
If another band is to play after you, clear out as quickly as you can!
Arg, nothing worse than doing a festival or something where you only have a 15 minute change over (including your quick soundcheck) and the band before you takes 12 minutes to get off stage.
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Old 03-25-2019, 12:08 PM
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Default Re: Stage Etiquette article

Thanks : good articles.
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  #9  
Old 03-25-2019, 11:11 PM
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Default Re: Stage Etiquette article

Quote:
Originally Posted by JustJames View Post
Interesting...on most stages there are only so many places where plank wankers can be expected to set up. Is it too much to ask that there be power already there?

The point I would have liked to have seen in the article, is this:
If another band is to play after you, clear out as quickly as you can!
I agree of course, but equally, if you're on after a band, at least give them some sort of fighting chance to get off the stage instead of piling on
even before the last ripple of applause for their final song has died away. As well as being downright disrespectful, it causes all sorts of mix-ups with gear.
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  #10  
Old 03-26-2019, 04:51 AM
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Default Re: Stage Etiquette article

Quote:
Originally Posted by JustJames View Post

The point I would have liked to have seen in the article, is this:
If another band is to play after you, clear out as quickly as you can!
Yeah, That's something I would loved to have included, but there is a word number restriction on these articles. I had WAY more written and had to trim it down.

Glad you all enjoyed the article.
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  #11  
Old 03-26-2019, 04:54 AM
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Default Re: Stage Etiquette article

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Originally Posted by eclipseownzu View Post
I just wonder if the message isn't aimed at too broad an audience.
It's a magazine that has a broad demographic of readers. Valuable info for musicians at every stage of the game, so I tried to keep some wide brush strokes while writing. My next one is going to be a little more focused on bands that tour in the van circuits, but again, will still be valuable enough to benefit people at any level.

G
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  #12  
Old 03-26-2019, 04:55 AM
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Default Re: Stage Etiquette article

Quote:
Originally Posted by eclipseownzu View Post
Well written article man, but I wonder who your audience is. Some of it is very beginner stuff (tuning pedals, hand signals) and then some is directed toward bands playing large gigs (stage entry, no band name).

Most the gigs I attend (and play) are in small clubs or bars with 50-100 people. We have no choice where to enter the stage, we constantly banter (or fight) with the crowd and each other, and with 4 or 5 bands on the bill, saying your band name is super important. Many of the things you say are useful for the young bands we play with, so no doubt its useful there. I just wonder if the message isn't aimed at too broad an audience.
I agree this should be very beginner stuff, but I've seen so many club bands who apparently never learned it.
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  #13  
Old 03-26-2019, 07:01 PM
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Default Re: Stage Etiquette article

Quote:
Originally Posted by Living Dead Drummer View Post

You can also read some of my previous articles at the following links:
“Find & Keep A Great Drummer”
https://www.musicconnection.com/find-great-drummer/
That was an excellent article that I wish more non-drummers could actually articulate or at least think about - so many points in there.
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  #14  
Old 03-27-2019, 12:36 AM
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Default Re: Stage Etiquette article

Quote:
Originally Posted by BertTheDrummer View Post
Arg, nothing worse than doing a festival or something where you only have a 15 minute change over (including your quick soundcheck) and the band before you takes 12 minutes to get off stage.
I know. It really is a pain because I never know what to do with the extra 5 min.
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  #15  
Old 03-27-2019, 04:23 PM
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Default Re: Stage Etiquette article

Quote:
Originally Posted by JustJames View Post
If another band is to play after you, clear out as quickly as you can!
This could be an entire article unto itself...

Don't take your cymbals off, one-by-one, while still on stage. Move the damn cymbals and stands offstage, THEN start disassembling. That allows the next guy to start setting up without having to wait for your inconsiderate ass.

Likewise, don't take the time to pack everything into its respective case, bin, bag, etc. MOVE THE DAMN DRUMS OFFSTAGE - then break everything down at your leisure. The next guy will TRULY appreciate it...trust me.

DON'T stop to go outside for a cigarette, or get a drink from the bar, or sit and talk to your friends about how cool you were. MOVE THE DAMN DRUMS. Someone is waiting for you.

See where I'm going with this?...

When I'm playing in any slot other than the closing slot, as soon as that last chord fades (and often before), I'm up off my throne and moving anything not miked. While I'm doing that, the sound guys have a minute to grab the mics and cords without me in the way; I return, grab the remaining drums, and I'm completely cleared out within a few minutes. (And usually in time to help a guitarist move his amp offstage - which, curiously, seems to take longer than moving an entire drum kit...but that's a rant for another day.)

Sometimes it's a real pain in the ass finding a clear area to move the drums from the stage; sometimes there are drunk people in the way; sometimes you're bumping into the next band as they move towards the playing area. Sometimes it just seems easier to break it all down before moving anything.

TOUGH SHIT. The guys playing after you have just as much right to start their set on time as you did. Be considerate, be polite, be professional...MOVE YOUR DAMN DRUMS WHEN YOU FINISH.
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Old 03-27-2019, 07:13 PM
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Default Re: Stage Etiquette article

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Originally Posted by philrudd View Post
This could be an entire article unto itself...

Don't take your cymbals off, one-by-one, while still on stage. Move the damn cymbals and stands offstage, THEN start disassembling. That allows the next guy to start setting up without having to wait for your inconsiderate ass.
This only works if you're not using house cymbal stands. Most gigs I play, you have to take your cymbals off as the stands are part of the house kit.

I do usually bring an extra stand anyway as apparently having 2 crashes AND a ride isn't standard so bring an extra anyway - and do just this though - take the whole stand off and break-down off stage.

But urgh, the flipside as mentioned above is don't rush the stage when you're next on. I've had a drummer sit at the throne whilst I was still trying to break it down - snare, cymbals and pedal!
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  #17  
Old 03-27-2019, 07:41 PM
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Default Re: Stage Etiquette article

Quote:
Originally Posted by Durbs View Post
I've had a drummer sit at the throne whilst I was still trying to break it down - snare, cymbals and pedal!
Should have asked him to give you hand...
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  #18  
Old 03-27-2019, 07:57 PM
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Default Re: Stage Etiquette article

Nicely done Mr. Mason
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  #19  
Old 03-27-2019, 08:19 PM
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Default Re: Stage Etiquette article

Quote:
Originally Posted by philrudd View Post
This could be an entire article unto itself...

Don't take your cymbals off, one-by-one, while still on stage. Move the damn cymbals and stands offstage, THEN start disassembling. That allows the next guy to start setting up without having to wait for your inconsiderate ass.

Likewise, don't take the time to pack everything into its respective case, bin, bag, etc. MOVE THE DAMN DRUMS OFFSTAGE - then break everything down at your leisure. The next guy will TRULY appreciate it...trust me.

DON'T stop to go outside for a cigarette, or get a drink from the bar, or sit and talk to your friends about how cool you were. MOVE THE DAMN DRUMS. Someone is waiting for you.

See where I'm going with this?...

When I'm playing in any slot other than the closing slot, as soon as that last chord fades (and often before), I'm up off my throne and moving anything not miked. While I'm doing that, the sound guys have a minute to grab the mics and cords without me in the way; I return, grab the remaining drums, and I'm completely cleared out within a few minutes. (And usually in time to help a guitarist move his amp offstage - which, curiously, seems to take longer than moving an entire drum kit...but that's a rant for another day.)

Sometimes it's a real pain in the ass finding a clear area to move the drums from the stage; sometimes there are drunk people in the way; sometimes you're bumping into the next band as they move towards the playing area. Sometimes it just seems easier to break it all down before moving anything.

TOUGH SHIT. The guys playing after you have just as much right to start their set on time as you did. Be considerate, be polite, be professional...MOVE YOUR DAMN DRUMS WHEN YOU FINISH.
This! Couldn't agree with this more!
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  #20  
Old 03-27-2019, 08:47 PM
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Default Re: Stage Etiquette article

We seem to break every rule in the book every night. Suits us just fine :)
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  #21  
Old 04-01-2019, 05:36 PM
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Default Re: Stage Etiquette article

Quote:
Originally Posted by Durbs View Post
This only works if you're not using house cymbal stands. Most gigs I play, you have to take your cymbals off as the stands are part of the house kit.
Well, of course there are various situations where the actions I describe are impossible: shared kits, split stages, etc. etc. I'm referring to the usual multi-band bills, at least where I play, with each band using their own equipment.

Short answer: Get yourself and your personal gear off stage in the least amount of time given the parameters of the situation, whatever those may be.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Durbs View Post
But urgh, the flipside as mentioned above is don't rush the stage when you're next on. I've had a drummer sit at the throne whilst I was still trying to break it down - snare, cymbals and pedal!
I've been playing for over 30 years now — many of those years touring all over America in countless clubs and theatres — and I have to say that I can't remember an instance of that happening. I'm sure it MUST have - I've been on too many bills for it not to have happened at SOME time - but I just can't recall a specific instance.

On the other hand, people dragging their ass when getting off stage is something I've run into with frustrating frequency. (And I don't buy the 'my-kit-is-huge-and-therefore-I'm-entitled-to-more-time' excuse. I didn't ask you to bring a 13-piece kit with racks and a gong to the club; the way I see it, the burden is on the drummer to figure out a method of moving his gargantuan setup as quickly as the guy using a 4-piece.)

Maybe the fact that I haven't encountered many people rushing the stage has something to do with my practice of vacating the stage as quickly as possible: the upcoming drummer simply doesn't have the opportunity to infringe on my space. (And thus, we uncover one more benefit of a quick exit after playing...)
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  #22  
Old 04-02-2019, 12:29 AM
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DaleClark DaleClark is offline
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Default Re: Stage Etiquette article

This band has no problem getting things of the stage LOL
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w6Lm7MfymdU
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  #23  
Old 04-02-2019, 11:24 PM
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eclipseownzu eclipseownzu is offline
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Default Re: Stage Etiquette article

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Originally Posted by Frosticles View Post
We seem to break every rule in the book every night. Suits us just fine :)
Exactly! The only rules are - there are no rules.
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  #24  
Old 04-03-2019, 01:41 AM
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Default Re: Stage Etiquette article

Absolutely all of this! It's my biggest gripe of other drummers/bands when playing out BY FAR.

On the "rushing the stage" side of the coin ... it's never happened to me (because I get my shit dealt with right away) but I HAVE been the guy rushing the stage when previous drummer is taking his time breaking everything down on stage. I don't hide my annoyance and usually say something along the lines of, "This ain't the place for that, other bands are trying to set up" as I start crowding in on them. It doesn't have to be antagonistic, but being subtle usually won't cut it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by philrudd View Post
This could be an entire article unto itself...

Don't take your cymbals off, one-by-one, while still on stage. Move the damn cymbals and stands offstage, THEN start disassembling. That allows the next guy to start setting up without having to wait for your inconsiderate ass.

Likewise, don't take the time to pack everything into its respective case, bin, bag, etc. MOVE THE DAMN DRUMS OFFSTAGE - then break everything down at your leisure. The next guy will TRULY appreciate it...trust me.

DON'T stop to go outside for a cigarette, or get a drink from the bar, or sit and talk to your friends about how cool you were. MOVE THE DAMN DRUMS. Someone is waiting for you.

See where I'm going with this?...

When I'm playing in any slot other than the closing slot, as soon as that last chord fades (and often before), I'm up off my throne and moving anything not miked. While I'm doing that, the sound guys have a minute to grab the mics and cords without me in the way; I return, grab the remaining drums, and I'm completely cleared out within a few minutes. (And usually in time to help a guitarist move his amp offstage - which, curiously, seems to take longer than moving an entire drum kit...but that's a rant for another day.)

Sometimes it's a real pain in the ass finding a clear area to move the drums from the stage; sometimes there are drunk people in the way; sometimes you're bumping into the next band as they move towards the playing area. Sometimes it just seems easier to break it all down before moving anything.

TOUGH SHIT. The guys playing after you have just as much right to start their set on time as you did. Be considerate, be polite, be professional...MOVE YOUR DAMN DRUMS WHEN YOU FINISH.
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  #25  
Old 04-03-2019, 02:03 AM
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Default Re: Stage Etiquette article

I find it quicker to bring my own stands and hi hats, setting the cymbals up and adjusting them while they finish their last few songs. It's much faster for me to take off the backline stands and replace them with my already bronzed and adjusted stands, rather than load and adjust the backline stands, if they even adjust at all.

Also, I think it's perfectly fine to express any anger towards the "way too late" departing drummer, it feels good actually.

Oh and right on Phil.
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  #26  
Old 04-03-2019, 07:20 PM
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Default Re: Stage Etiquette article

Quote:
Originally Posted by larryace View Post
I find it quicker to bring my own stands and hi hats, setting the cymbals up and adjusting them while they finish their last few songs. It's much faster for me to take off the backline stands and replace them with my already bronzed and adjusted stands, rather than load and adjust the backline stands, if they even adjust at all.
So do I! What's strange is the resistance I get when I show up with my own stands; I'm repeatedly asked, 'I thought you were sharing the kit?' or 'Can't you just switch out the cymbals?' People - non-drummers, really - don't seem to understand that re-adjusting a cymbal stand to your own preferences (which may require a few tries to get right) takes MUCH longer than just swapping out the entire contraption.

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Oh and right on Phil.
Grazié!
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