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  • Flakes

    I'm sure I've probably written about this before, but another flake incident just has my gears grinding...

    I've been trying to form a Rush tribute band for 5+ years, off and on. I've met two drummers who could do it, and one bassist, but that's about it. I've put out ads here and there, but it only ever seemed to draw flakes, none of which ever made it to actually meeting or auditioning. Of the people I know that can play, they all have no time to dedicate to a regular project but all good guys.

    So then out of nowhere, a CL ad appears, they are looking for 'THE guitarist', a clone, a perfect fit, to form the ultimate power trio Rush tribute. The drummer and bass are already together and cover all aspects of their parts well. This is what I've been waiting for - falls right into my lap. I contact the ad-placer, swap a few emails. He wants to know exactly what gear I have, my skill level, and wants demos. Ok, I have pro gear, and the resources to buy anything I need. I have demos.. not just good demos, but HQ backing tracks I've laid down guitars on- and these are demos I can say I'm proud of, I've nailed the tones, styles, and leads on. He gets back to me, says yeah these are awesome, blah blah. We set an audition date two weeks away.

    I spend the next 8 days brushing up on songs, leads, etc.. making sure that I'm well prepared, as this is a serious opportunity for me. I swap a couple more emails with the guy, and he's aware I'm brushing up and even that I'm buying some additional gear to be able to nail certain effects and stuff for this audition (I would have bought the gear anyways TBH), so I send him an email to confirm the audition as well as ask where it is, directions, etc.

    His response-
    "Oh.. well, uh we decided to use another guitarist that the bassist knows".

    I replied, well that's all find and dandy, but why would you not at least want to audition me, I might be a much more perfect fit considering the precision of the playing, sound, and even look??

    His response was "Yeah your demos were really great, I never heard anyone hit that solo on Kid Gloves perfectly like that. You'll be the first one we call if we need to replace him"

    Does he not realize how bad he completely dissed me? If he calls, I'm pretty sure I'd tell him to GFH. Why is there an ad up? Why is it still up? F'ing flakes.

    I just hate other musicians sometimes. No honor or responsibility seems to be the norm anymore.
    Epihpone LP and Dot.
    Fender American Strat HSS
    (Loaner) Viking Pillager 60w combo (best amp in the friggin world!)
    Blackstar Stage-100 Head, 2x12 Blackstar Cab
    Marshall 4x10 Cab
    Pedals, pedals, and more pedals. Favs include Strymon Mobius, MXR Super Badass, Digitech Supernatural Reverb, Xotic BB, MXR Carbon Copy.-

  • #2
    Musicians are pretty much the definition of flakes. sorry to hear.
    PA Unity15's over LS800p's. YX15's, YX12's IPR power, RM32AI

    LightsMartin Minimac Profiles, Chauvet Intimidator Spot Duos, Blizzard 3NX, Fab5, Hotbox

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    • #3
      It happens. We were looking for a keyboard player in 2000. We set up auditions with several people. After the third one, we found the perfect fit, both talent-wise and personality-wise. We called the other guys and told them the position was filled. All of them were cool with that- except one. He flew into a rage, said he spent "hours" learning these "two ****************ty songs off our ****************ty CD" and called us everything but a child of God.

      Fast forward 3 years later, we're playing at a ski resort, and here comes Mr Keyboards, drunk to the gills, who marched up and jumped on stage nd got right in my grill about how much we suck, how terrible we were we didn't give him a shot, how much our CD sucked, and so on., So I told him he should be glad he didn't get the gig if that's how he felt. I know we were lucky we didn't hire him!

      The point is, it isn't personal, and never was. I always looked at auditions the same was I looked at job interviews. More than once I had interviews canceled because they filled the position. Likewise, I had auditions canceled for the same reason. The worst one was when I moved to LA after selling most of what I owned so I could play in my friend's showcase band. He assured me the gig was mine. But as it turns out, literally as were en route with a Ryder truck towing our car, they hired someone else and I didn't get the gig. So here I was in LA, not knowing a soul except my friend, and no gig. Turns out that is business as usual in places like that. I was pissed, and disappointed, but I didn;t take it personally. We stayed a year and left.

      Comment


      • #4
        well, c'mon, Kramer, you were dealing with a drummer...so what did you expect?

        I get where you are, but this is something that does happen, in a number of forms. A couple of years back I wanted t oput a trio together. Had guys I knew lined up. Rented a rehearsal room, did the first rehearsal...all good, sounded solid; a week later the drummer emails me...'I'm gonna have to pass on this, I'm just not into all the material you want to do'.
        Fast forward a year...and he is doing a very similar act with another guitarist singer I know...the drummer says 'I had to spend a lot of time getting myself up to speed on your material, and you had moved on to the 'big band' thing, and when 'Paul' approached me with a similar set list, this time I was ready!'
        "We are currently experiencing some technical difficulties due to reality fluctuations. The elves are working tirelessly to patch the correct version of reality. Activities here have been temporarily disabled since the fundamentals of mathematics, physics and reason may be incomprehensible during this indeterminate period of instability. Normal service will be restored once we are certain as to what 'normal' is."

        Life's journey is not to arrive at the grave safely in a well preserved body, but rather to skid in sideways, totally used up and worn out, shouting '...man, what a ride!'
        "The greatness of a man is not in how much wealth he acquires, but in his integrity and his ability to affect those around him positively" ~Bob Marley

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        • #5
          Originally posted by Pat'sStrat View Post
          It happens. We were looking for a keyboard player in 2000. We set up auditions with several people. After the third one, we found the perfect fit, both talent-wise and personality-wise. We called the other guys and told them the position was filled. All of them were cool with that- except one. He flew into a rage, said he spent "hours" learning these "two ****************ty songs off our ****************ty CD" and called us everything but a child of God.

          Fast forward 3 years later, we're playing at a ski resort, and here comes Mr Keyboards, drunk to the gills, who marched up and jumped on stage nd got right in my grill about how much we suck, how terrible we were we didn't give him a shot, how much our CD sucked, and so on., So I told him he should be glad he didn't get the gig if that's how he felt. I know we were lucky we didn't hire him!

          The point is, it isn't personal, and never was. I always looked at auditions the same was I looked at job interviews. More than once I had interviews canceled because they filled the position. Likewise, I had auditions canceled for the same reason. The worst one was when I moved to LA after selling most of what I owned so I could play in my friend's showcase band. He assured me the gig was mine. But as it turns out, literally as were en route with a Ryder truck towing our car, they hired someone else and I didn't get the gig. So here I was in LA, not knowing a soul except my friend, and no gig. Turns out that is business as usual in places like that. I was pissed, and disappointed, but I didn;t take it personally. We stayed a year and left.
          Had experiences like you did with the keyboard player. Just ends up confirming that not hiring them was the right move. The other guys you didn't hire were probably just as disappointed and upset, and maybe you handled it the best you could or you didn't but, bottom line, the one guy who didn't deal with it professionally was the one who turned out to a borderline nut case. Go figure!

          To the OP: Yeah, so they hired a friend of someone in the band over you even though you were the better player----yeah that happens. Personality meshes and friendships often trump musical skills in this business. Just the way it goes sometimes. Don't take it personal.
          ______________

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          • #6
            Originally posted by Pat'sStrat View Post
            It happens. We were looking for a keyboard player in 2000. We set up auditions with several people. After the third one, we found the perfect fit, both talent-wise and personality-wise. We called the other guys and told them the position was filled. All of them were cool with that- except one. He flew into a rage, said he spent "hours" learning these "two ****************ty songs off our ****************ty CD" and called us everything but a child of God.

            Fast forward 3 years later, we're playing at a ski resort, and here comes Mr Keyboards, drunk to the gills, who marched up and jumped on stage nd got right in my grill about how much we suck, how terrible we were we didn't give him a shot, how much our CD sucked, and so on., So I told him he should be glad he didn't get the gig if that's how he felt. I know we were lucky we didn't hire him!

            The point is, it isn't personal, and never was. I always looked at auditions the same was I looked at job interviews. More than once I had interviews canceled because they filled the position. Likewise, I had auditions canceled for the same reason. The worst one was when I moved to LA after selling most of what I owned so I could play in my friend's showcase band. He assured me the gig was mine. But as it turns out, literally as were en route with a Ryder truck towing our car, they hired someone else and I didn't get the gig. So here I was in LA, not knowing a soul except my friend, and no gig. Turns out that is business as usual in places like that. I was pissed, and disappointed, but I didn;t take it personally. We stayed a year and left.
            Pat how long were you in LA didn't you eventually tour with some other band in CA?
            "Danny, ci manchi a tutti. La E-Street Band non e' la stessa senza di te. Riposa in pace, fratello"

            Comment


            • Pat'sStrat
              Pat'sStrat commented
              Editing a comment
              I was in LA only a year before moving to San Diego. I did my touring full time in the Northwest (Washington, Oregon, Idaho, Montana, Wyoming, British Columbia, Alberta and Saskatchewan) for three years before I moved to LA. In fact the LA experience soured me so much, I put my gear in the closet and didn't pull it out for 6 years, when I moved back home. I fell off a top plate framing a house in the snow and broke my left knee on a concrete footing, so I put a band together to make some cash until I could return to work.I ended up quitting the job and keeping the band. LOL

          • #7
            Yeah I was pretty miffed when I wrote the OP. I ended up putting up my own ad, since I was already boned up on the material and ready to go. I made it a point in the ad to say I was not part of the other project, I didn't want people to think that they were replacing me or that I was a disgruntled former member.

            I got a LOT of responses to the ad, many saying that they also worked with that other project and that the guy was and endless talker and it became apparent that he just wasn't doing anything with starting the actual project. So I feel a lot better about that. I am working with a bass / keys player who has awesome chops and attitude, and set to audition a drummer next week.

            I'm getting some of the rejects from that other project as well, people that don't have the skills but think they do. I'm a little surprised every time I've held auditions that so many don't know that they lack the required level of skill; when I was at that level, and auditioned for things I wasn't nearly good enough for, it was blatantly obvious to me.

            In the end , all good. Pat, your stories are still interesting after all these years of seeing your posts. Why was LA such a drag for you? I've dreamed of moving to west hollywood for a few years, and while I never will because of my job here, I wonder why you speak so down about it. Is it the music scene there, or just everything about it?
            Epihpone LP and Dot.
            Fender American Strat HSS
            (Loaner) Viking Pillager 60w combo (best amp in the friggin world!)
            Blackstar Stage-100 Head, 2x12 Blackstar Cab
            Marshall 4x10 Cab
            Pedals, pedals, and more pedals. Favs include Strymon Mobius, MXR Super Badass, Digitech Supernatural Reverb, Xotic BB, MXR Carbon Copy.-

            Comment


            • Pat'sStrat
              Pat'sStrat commented
              Editing a comment
              Well, I went down there specifically to play with a friend I had played with at home (he moved to Seattle, then LA). I had gone to Seattle to do some recording for him, and then after he was in LA for a couple of years he called me and said he was in a band with some studio cats who had been on several TV shows and played on some hit songs by Bonnie Raitt, Gregg Allman, etc etc. They were showcasing for record companies, had some great contacts with A&R guys, and needed a reliable and consistent guitar player, so I told him I could do it, but that I had just recently gotten married and I was in school, so I needed to finish the semester, liquidate some assets and then move. I told him I could be there by July 4th. He said it was perfect timing. Long story short, as we were literally driving a moving truck and towing our car to LA they hired someone else. I went to a few auditions after that, but my heart wasn't in it. I went there to play with my friend, and it wasn't happening. I was told by one guy my playing was "too violent" and asked if I could play more ''pastel", whatever the hell that meant.

              I would never in a million years have moved to LA otherwise. I found myself in a town where I know no one, where it took every dime we earned just to be there, where it took hours to drive somewhere that was just 15 miles away. Because of that, it was difficult to make friends- getting together with them was a nightmare. And it seems everyone we met was there to be something else- "oh, I'm not really a waiter, I'm a screen writer." " Right now, I'm selling ad space in the Yellow Pages, but I'm really an actor." Because money and time were so precious there, you just didn;t have time for relationships that couldn't help you get somewhere. You didn't make friends, you made contacts. And making contacts was really hard if you didn't have anything to offer in return.Too, I got to know some "famous" people- Lee Lochnane, the trumpet player for Chicago when they were in a low point doing things like benefits for the Malibu City Park, or Donelly Rhodes and Katherine Helmond, who had been on "Soap" and were trying to get other work, and so on. They, known quantities, were struggling to survive. What chance did I have?

              Moving to LA is a lot like moving to Nashville or Austin. While there may have once been a time when you could move there and get "discovered" ( In LA, you could get off a bus as an aspiring actor or actress in the 30s through the 50s and get discovered nearly anywhere; for music is was the early 60s through the early 70s) that quickly changed. Now, moving to those places is what people do when they are already a viable commodity, particularly in music. You can go to places in the valley, West LA, Westwood, Hollywood, etc and swing a dead cat and hit a GIT graduate or some other fabulous player playing for nothing.

              When I moved back home, I discovered it is far more rewarding in both becoming known and in earning potential to be a bigger fish in a smaller pond than to be a nobody in a sea of nobodies, a ton of whom are better at it than me.

              Just my experience and my take.
              Last edited by Pat'sStrat; 10-10-2017, 10:30 AM.

          • #8
            DO NOT MOVE TO LA.
            Please, stay where you are.
            LA is a terrible place full of terrible things, terrible traffic, terrible weather, terrible fires, terrible earthquakes and terrible people...I know this to be true because I am one of them.
            "We are currently experiencing some technical difficulties due to reality fluctuations. The elves are working tirelessly to patch the correct version of reality. Activities here have been temporarily disabled since the fundamentals of mathematics, physics and reason may be incomprehensible during this indeterminate period of instability. Normal service will be restored once we are certain as to what 'normal' is."

            Life's journey is not to arrive at the grave safely in a well preserved body, but rather to skid in sideways, totally used up and worn out, shouting '...man, what a ride!'
            "The greatness of a man is not in how much wealth he acquires, but in his integrity and his ability to affect those around him positively" ~Bob Marley

            Comment


            • #9
              Pat- If I ever did move there, it wouldn't be to 'make it', that part of my life is behind me. I could work from anywhere ghost writing jingles and pop crap, so again, not a reason to go or not. I get the complaints - your description of the people all suffering 'otherness' and only contacts instead of friends reminds me exactly of my experience living in Florida.. Granted, I lived in Orlando (Kissimmee) and it was a cesspool of horrible people who only cared about you enough to discover what they could get from knowing you. I can't imagine all of LA and the suburbs are (all) that awful, but I sure ain't blind to bad human nature in places like that.

              I just bought a house here in PA, despite my juvenile desire to roam the country with zero ties, so it's just a daydream anyways.

              daddymack: LOL!
              Epihpone LP and Dot.
              Fender American Strat HSS
              (Loaner) Viking Pillager 60w combo (best amp in the friggin world!)
              Blackstar Stage-100 Head, 2x12 Blackstar Cab
              Marshall 4x10 Cab
              Pedals, pedals, and more pedals. Favs include Strymon Mobius, MXR Super Badass, Digitech Supernatural Reverb, Xotic BB, MXR Carbon Copy.-

              Comment


              • #10
                Kramer...I have had the unfortunate lot in life to have lived in NYC and Los Angeles nearly all of my life...cities are what you make of them. Me, I make jokes about them, but only to mask the pain and frustration that comes from being somewhere everyone else thinks is a mecca for something.
                To be perfectly clear, I have been to many cities over the years, and I keep coming back to LA...and it ain't the food. I'm sure there are better places to live in America, but I have not found one... well, maybe Nawlinz...except for the pesky flooding thing...[give me a fire here and there and an earthquake every 20 or so years]...I'm stuck here for a couple more years [caregiver for my 93 year old father]...then...off to Kona! Volcanos and tsunamis...
                Last edited by daddymack; 10-11-2017, 09:13 PM.
                "We are currently experiencing some technical difficulties due to reality fluctuations. The elves are working tirelessly to patch the correct version of reality. Activities here have been temporarily disabled since the fundamentals of mathematics, physics and reason may be incomprehensible during this indeterminate period of instability. Normal service will be restored once we are certain as to what 'normal' is."

                Life's journey is not to arrive at the grave safely in a well preserved body, but rather to skid in sideways, totally used up and worn out, shouting '...man, what a ride!'
                "The greatness of a man is not in how much wealth he acquires, but in his integrity and his ability to affect those around him positively" ~Bob Marley

                Comment


                • Pat'sStrat
                  Pat'sStrat commented
                  Editing a comment
                  Well, as a caveat, let me say that the music business has changed exponentially since those days. However, life in LA has only gotten more expensive, more crowded and more difficult to navigate for newcomers and outsiders.

              • #11
                start up bands tend to attract flakes as do broken bands. Auditions are two way streets. I almost think the broken band thing is worse because many times the problems are still there.
                "you mess with him and you mess with the whole trailer park"

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                • #12
                  Can't disagree with that, but I guess you gotta start somewhere with a startup!
                  Epihpone LP and Dot.
                  Fender American Strat HSS
                  (Loaner) Viking Pillager 60w combo (best amp in the friggin world!)
                  Blackstar Stage-100 Head, 2x12 Blackstar Cab
                  Marshall 4x10 Cab
                  Pedals, pedals, and more pedals. Favs include Strymon Mobius, MXR Super Badass, Digitech Supernatural Reverb, Xotic BB, MXR Carbon Copy.-

                  Comment


                  • #13
                    Pat I have a great drummer that I used to play with 25 years ago that moved back to this region 5 years ago from LA. He had gone out there with an original band and it turned to salt. I met him by chance last summer and he told me that it was really a tough scene to break into and on the pro level was very clicky. He said that he met a lot of contacts there but it was very saturated. He came back to NYS because he said he could do almost anything here that he could do there gig wise and get paid about the same.
                    "Danny, ci manchi a tutti. La E-Street Band non e' la stessa senza di te. Riposa in pace, fratello"

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