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There's really no other way, is there?

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  • There's really no other way, is there?

    I play drums for a cover band, and have done so since February of 2011. We had no singer, then found one, then had to let him go after about a year for lack of commitment. Found another singer (female) last June. Her and I ended up doing some acoustic duo stuff on the side. At first it was to help her practice the band's songs, but eventually we just started playing our own stuff with plans to perform at wineries, restaurants, etc. By about September, she wasn't pleased that 2/3 of the group (not myself) had zero interest in her choices for new songs. So she quit. Her and I then started to ramp up the duo stuff: 30+ songs, popular music where her voice shines. But since about November, she's just not making any progress on getting the lyrics correct. When she's on, it's great. But the other times...

    So I want to split with her and find a new singer. Basically, I can't continue to wait for her to get her parts learned, correct? No matter what personal relationship we have outside of the group. These aren't difficult songs.

    I'm trying to find out what other people do in this situation.

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  • #2

    She is either motivated to memorize the words correctly or she isn't. I made up my mind when I got into this to memorize all of the words to every song I do, no cheat sheets. When I started down this path memorizing words didn't come easy. But as I worked on it more and more it now is very easily. Sounds to me like she doesn't want to put in the time to memorize the lyrics correctly. I would have a sit down with her and let her know how you feel and how it is important to you that the songs be done correctly. If, after that, she still doesn't want to get with the program then you need to do what you have too.

    NSA - The only government agency that actually listens to what you have to say.

    Comment


    • #3

      That just  means she is out of focus, she's not motivated and her interest is low. You can always have things perfect if you are interested and passionate enough to do so, but if you are not, then sitautions like these are really common.


      She can't always be that way. You have to make plans on your own. Knowing her frustrating perfromance you've mentioned, I agree your reason of looking for  another singer to do it is reasonable enough. But if you are confident enough with her talent in singing and you really found her great then you can always do the changes by opening up to her your concerns, that way she might realize that she is of her downfalls and she has to be alarmed with it.

      Comment


      • daddymack
        daddymack commented
        Editing a comment

        Duos are partnerships, and if one partner isn't keeping up with the other, then it won't work, and the worst thing you can do is to not say anything.


    • #4

      Well there's usually  another way, it's just if you want to go there.  For instance, one of the best singers I have ever worked with can't or won't memorize lyricsHe always shows up with a book and his music stand. That's just how he does it, and you either take it or leave it.

      If your singer is working out in every other way, you could try getting her to use an iPad or something similar, that would be more acceptable to the audience than paper - as long as it was acceptable to you.

      And I suppose first things first (as stated above) you should try to find out why she isn't learning the lyricsIf her answer isn't satisfactory then you'll have to decide where you go next.

      Comment


      • rodclement
        rodclement commented
        Editing a comment

        I fall under the category of "can't memorize lyrics", it is not laziness, it's a learning disability, I can't memorize numbers either so, you should have a talk with her and find out what her reason is, she may be bored and want out, or she simply is unable to do it.

        Having said that, I have been fronting bands since age 16 so it can be done, I learn my parts, and the lyrics on my own time and alwasy come prepared, I use a tablet for lyrics in gigs as a reference point, not a crutch, I don't follow the tablet all night, it just brings me comfort to know it's there if I need it. My point is, there are ways it can be done without taking away from the performance if she is willing to do it. If not, dump her.

        JMO

        Rod


    • #5

      She was picking songs that most the band members didn't like, so are these the same songs that she cant memorize with the duo? Looks like you've had a talk with her about it, which is what I would have suggested. Maybe she doesn't have enough time between her day job, kids etc.

       

      Listening and singing along with songs in the car is what my female singer does because she's crunched for time. An mp3 player with headphones might be the way to go too.

      Winner of best guitarist in the house. (my house)!

      Comment


      • nousername
        nousername commented
        Editing a comment

        She had trouble memorizing the band's songs, but they were all new to her. The songs we have as a duo are songs she's been singing forever. Incorrectly, it turns out.

        We chatted today, and I told her I was bummed out we had not reached goals that we talked about back when we first got excited. She agreed, and said that we should come up with some goals we can both agree upon. For starters, her laying down vox on the four demos I recorded. Which makes me happy. They're over a month old. I think we'll also decide on a performance schedule. Maybe a couple open mic nights per month until we line up regular paying gigs.

        I appreciate everyone's thoughts. After talking with her today, I realized our biggest issue is my inflated sense of progress. I think we should be adding one to two songs per week. She doesn't. We're going to get this worked out. :manhappy:


    • #6

      nousername wrote:

      I play drums for a cover band, and have done so since February of 2011. We had no singer, then found one, then had to let him go after about a year for lack of commitment. Found another singer (female) last June. Her and I ended up doing some acoustic duo stuff on the side. At first it was to help her practice the band's songs, but eventually we just started playing our own stuff with plans to perform at wineries, restaurants, etc. By about September, she wasn't pleased that 2/3 of the group (not myself) had zero interest in her choices for new songs. So she quit. Her and I then started to ramp up the duo stuff: 30+ songs, popular music where her voice shines. But since about November, she's just not making any progress on getting the lyrics correct. When she's on, it's great. But the other times...

      So I want to split with her and find a new singer. Basically, I can't continue to wait for her to get her parts learned, correct? No matter what personal relationship we have outside of the group. These aren't difficult songs.

      I'm trying to find out what other people do in this situation.


      Mostly, I play solo gigs, 'cause I can always depend on myself!

      As soon as it becomes a duo, and then a trio, etc., the headaches start growing in magnitude.

      Wish it wasn't this way, but it always seems to end up like that, so nowdays, when I book a trio gig for Too Hot For Snakes, I immediately line up a spare bassist and percussionist, just in case.

      Comment


      • Dr.Tom
        Dr.Tom commented
        Editing a comment

        I jumped in here late but wanted to comment. I'm glad you are talking because that's really important and will make a big difference in how you finally work this out.

        I also wanted to comment about those who have a bandmate who can't learn the lyrics, no matter what. I have a front man that I have played with for years. He can't learn the lyrics and uses songsheets. So I've just learned to accept it when working with him. I'm now doing an acoustic trio with him and that's part of the deal. When playing in other band situationswith him over the years, no one ever mentioned the fact that he had a music stand and was using song sheets.

         

        Tom

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