Harmony Central Forums
Announcement Announcement Module
Collapse
No announcement yet.

Covers or originals?

Page Title Module
Move Remove Collapse









X
Conversation Detail Module
Collapse
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • #46
    Originally posted by Jimi Ray Halen

    I hear a lot of bands doing the original thing at our practice studio - and they all sound the same. Cookie Monster vocals over way loud distorted guitar riffs. Not a lot of dynamics. I can only take so much screaming. Like 5 seconds.


    This is what I'm talking about. Every original band in my area wants to be a heavier version of Mudvayne. There's no possibly way to sing along to their music, they have no melody, no hook, nothing memorable about any of it.

    If there was a wide variety of different kinds of original bands, I think there would be a bigger market for it. Most people that are into the "cookie monster" band, don't go to night clubs. So these bands will never get a good show.
    CT/MA Music - A Site For Connecticut & Western Mass Bands/Musicians/Fans

    Comment


    • #47
      Originally posted by Lee Flier


      Oh yeah, from the point of view of musicianship/creativity it CAN be the same thing. When I say the two types of bands have different goals and philosophies, I mean basically... the cover band tries to play what they think their audience wants to hear, the original band does what they like and hopes somebody wants to hear it. The cover band tends to get the higher paying gigs, the original band tends to play a lot of gigs for not much money so that their music can be heard... etc. They can be kind of diametrically opposed... and again, we do both types of gigs so we know exactly how schizophrenic it can be. We enjoy both for different reasons, but it's definitely wearing two different hats.



      and my point is that to be successful, and to be asked to return by any venue, it doesn't matter whether you're playing covers or originals... the bottom line is the same - did you entertain the people, and make 'em wanna dance, and make 'em wanna drink?

      I don't believe that there SHOULD be a 'different philosophy'... the fact that you as an artist have something creative to say doesn't mean that anyone else wants to hear it, or that you know how to present that idea in an entertaining way. If your original music isn't entertaining the people, then there's something wrong with it. It has no merit just because it exists, or because it's yours...

      Musicians who go out and play in front of people are entertainers. If their music isn't entertaining, they need to work on it.
      mUk: an insignificant or contemptible person


      "If you quote yourself in your sig, your a dummy" - guitarmook

      Comment


      • #48
        Originally posted by Jimi Ray Halen
        I like doing covers because a great song is a great song.


        Totally agree and this was something that used to really piss me off playing in original bands in L.A. It was like pulling teeth to get people to do covers. I just never saw what the big deal was... I enjoy playing a great song and it makes a band a better band the more they play. Plus most of my biggest influences e.g. the Stones, Beatles, Who etc. started off being cover bands and that helped them develop their sound.

        Luckily my band now is different. We're basically an original band, but we nearly always have a few covers in our set, often relatively obscure ones that are great songs but not many people know them. And if we're playing house parties and the like where we play all night, we can pull out zillions of covers. We pride ourselves on having a very "deep" vocabulary and our audiences love that about us, so it's all good.
        What The...?
        http://www.what-the.com
        http://www.facebook.com/whattherock
        http://www.myspace.com/whattherock

        Comment


        • #49
          Originally posted by guitarmook


          and my point is that to be successful, and to be asked to return by any venue, it doesn't matter whether you're playing covers or originals... the bottom line is the same - did you entertain the people, and make 'em wanna dance, and make 'em wanna drink?



          I agree, it matters little how good you are. People that have a good time at your show are going to tell people you are good. Most people can't tell if you actually have talent or not. You can be awful, but put on a good show and if people like you, then that's all that matters. Problem is that most bad bands don't know how to entertain either. But I've played with some awful bands that people thought were awesome because we put on a good show.
          CT/MA Music - A Site For Connecticut & Western Mass Bands/Musicians/Fans

          Comment


          • #50
            I still have a bit of a problem with the "diametrically opposed" characterization. I'm also not convinced that doing covers necessarily qualifies as "dumbing down".

            I like riffdaddy's statement: "I believe that cover bands have the potential of expressing artistry through the music they choose and the manner in which the music is performed." When I do covers, I try to put as much into interpreting the song as I would my own. I never dumb that down, and hope that I do it in a manner that's enjoyable to everyone in the audience (realizing, of course, that playing to the lowest common denominator is not compatible with musical artistry). However, maybe I disqualify myself somewhat by making each cover somewhat my own, and don't necessarily stick to the song note-for-note and tone-for-tone, so it's intentionally my version of a tune.

            Doing originals can be a great boost personally, and I have a few that are very well received. But you can't sacrifice audience appeal in the name of "original artistry" - people have to pretty much like what you do, or you won't work very long. Performance artists (of all varieties) walk this line all the time, and all too often cross it into areas their audiences consider distasteful, thereby alienating the very people they are trying to reach. Music is no different. An original song that is an exercise in ego masturbation will not be heard for very long.

            The bottom line, though, I think, is what LosBoleros said: "starting to get a reputation as a Class-act". Whether it's covers or originals, does it enhance your reputation as a class act? Can people say, "they do (classic rock/punk/funk/folk/smooth jazz/whatever) and are really good"?

            So, if you do covers, do them the best they can be done by you. If you do originals, do them in the way that best pleases your audience. Honest effort that pleases the crowd will not go unrewarded (except by a$$hole promoters who don't give a sh!t about anything but the money - bu that's another thread ).
            -M.Cz
            *****
            For every action there is an equal and opposite criticism.
            No good deed goes unpunished.

            Comment


            • #51
              Originally posted by Micky Z
              I still have a bit of a problem with the "diametrically opposed" characterization. I'm also not convinced that doing covers necessarily qualifies as "dumbing down".


              I agree with you as well. Playing covers definitely does not mean you can't hack it. Alot of this comes from jealousy of original artists when they see cover bands making more money, playing better venues, etc. Instead of accepting the fact that their songs just aren't very good, they blame other factors.
              CT/MA Music - A Site For Connecticut & Western Mass Bands/Musicians/Fans

              Comment


              • #52
                Originally posted by fastplant
                ... the fact that their songs just aren't very good...

                Perhaps this is the unadmitted (but suspected) truth? I've written LOTS of originals that sucked. But usually I'd realize it before foisting them on an unsuspecting public. Most of them, at least...
                -M.Cz
                *****
                For every action there is an equal and opposite criticism.
                No good deed goes unpunished.

                Comment


                • #53
                  In a perfect world I think that all people would start out in cover bands, learn a bunch of different styles, play note for note solos of the masters and then come back to the original thing when they've developed the chops to do it properly.
                  That's how Jimi did it.
                  Same for Eddie.
                  Ditto Stevie.
                  Just three of the top of my head - but three greats for sure.
                  Anybody who looks down on cover bands - well - it ain't easy to do it properly. It isn't easy to play any music well.

                  Comment


                  • #54
                    Originally posted by fastplant


                    I agree with you as well. Playing covers definitely does not mean you can't hack it. Alot of this comes from jealousy of original artists when they see cover bands making more money, playing better venues, etc. Instead of accepting the fact that their songs just aren't very good, they blame other factors.


                    I think you just hit the nail on the head regarding issues with original bands right there. I like to think that there is an audience for everything. However, there are larger and more receptive audiences for the better acts or songs in a given genre... the creamier of the crop for what its worth. Every band who wites their own music is prone to believe that their's is the best. Well, that is for public consumption to decide.

                    All you can do as a band is write what you believe in and see what the verdict is. If you don't care about progress and public appeal, thats great. Rock on and enjoy it, but don't bitch if your music isn't getting the results that other's are acheiving. If you do care about progress and public appeal, then listen to your audience and make the effort to write better music.
                    Band Website - www.tk-421.net

                    Facebook - http://www.facebook.com/pages/TK-421/43220964860

                    Myspace - www.myspace.com/tk421band

                    Buy our Noise - TK-421 - CDBaby


                    Spector Euro 4 > Eden WT800B > Original Ampeg 8x10

                    Pedals are for bicycles

                    Comment


                    • #55
                      Originally posted by THX1138


                      I think you just hit the nail on the head regarding issues with original bands right there. I like to think that there is an audience for everything. However, there are larger and more receptive audiences for the better acts or songs in a given genre... the creamier of the crop for what its worth. Every band who wites their own music is prone to believe that their's is the best. Well, that is for public consumption to decide.

                      All you can do as a band is write what you believe in and see what the verdict is. If you don't care about progress and public appeal, thats great. Rock on and enjoy it, but don't bitch if your music isn't getting the results that other's are acheiving. If you do care about progress and public appeal, then listen to your audience and make the effort to write better music.


                      Which goes back to catering to your audience. It at least needs to be a consideration. My belief is that any original band can headline any club, even those dominated by cover bands, if they truly understand their audience.
                      CT/MA Music - A Site For Connecticut & Western Mass Bands/Musicians/Fans

                      Comment


                      • #56
                        Well, as a couple of other folks have pointed out, it's not even just the music or the songs that make for good public response, a lot of it is the "entertainment" factor. If you know how to put on a great show, get people dancing and drinking, are great looking, or whatever, all of these things will give you an edge over somebody who doesn't.

                        Frankly I have mixed feelings about that. I know a lot of seriously talented people who write great songs and/or are great musicians but they aren't necessarily "entertainers" and wouldn't go over well in a bar. And the fact of the matter is there are fewer places now that are strictly music venues than there were 20 years ago, mainly because there are less people now who seem willing to be active listeners. There are a few "songwriter showcase" type venues that mostly cater to acoustic music, and occasionally you get the club that caters to shoegazing college indie rock. But otherwise... the average listener seems to have become less open minded about music than they were even 10 years ago.

                        There are a lot of people who blame the cover bands for this mentality, in that cover bands have instilled this idea in audiences that they have a right to "demand" what they want and the band should give it to them. And if that's Freebird, well then shut up and play Freebird. People seem to want to hear music that falls within a narrow and familiar format and cover bands cater to that. So I think that's where a lot of the resentment comes from.

                        Personally though, I don't really blame the cover bands for that attitude, I blame radio and MTV. The attitude that audiences have now seems to have arisen in direct parallel with the tightening of radio playlists. Music has become mere "entertainment" or "wallpaper" for the most part, instead of something really important to people's lives in its own right, as it was to the baby boomers and before. Partly that's because there are so many bands whose music sucks, yeah, but there is still great music out there too... it's just mostly under the radar, and probably won't get heard unless it's being delivered in a specific way with a pretty package and all that.
                        What The...?
                        http://www.what-the.com
                        http://www.facebook.com/whattherock
                        http://www.myspace.com/whattherock

                        Comment


                        • #57
                          I think it all distills down to this:

                          Live music, has always been, at it's core, an excuse for folks to get together and party. If you ain't havin a party, you ain't havin an audience.

                          Comment


                          • #58
                            Originally posted by squealie
                            I think it all distills down to this:

                            Live music, has always been, at it's core, an excuse for folks to get together and party. If you ain't havin a party, you ain't havin an audience.


                            Well that's just it... I don't entirely agree. It has become that way to a large degree but that doesn't mean it's inherently that way. When you go to a symphony it's not a party. Some types of music are better for partying and some require more active listening to appreciate. But active listening doesn't happen as much anymore. How many people even still turn off all the lights, put on headphones and listen to an album or two all the way through? Everybody I knew used to do that, now most people listen to the radio or iPod while cleaning house, watching TV, talking on the phone, whatever. Like I said there are a few venues left that cater to active listeners but not many. That's just the reality, it's not really the musicians' fault. Unless they suck.
                            What The...?
                            http://www.what-the.com
                            http://www.facebook.com/whattherock
                            http://www.myspace.com/whattherock

                            Comment


                            • #59
                              Originally posted by Lee Flier


                              Well that's just it... I don't entirely agree. It has become that way to a large degree but that doesn't mean it's inherently that way. When you go to a symphony it's not a party. Some types of music are better for partying and some require more active listening to appreciate. But active listening doesn't happen as much anymore. How many people even still turn off all the lights, put on headphones and listen to an album or two all the way through? Everybody I knew used to do that, now most people listen to the radio or iPod while cleaning house, watching TV, talking on the phone, whatever. Like I said there are a few venues left that cater to active listeners but not many. That's just the reality, it's not really the musicians' fault. Unless they suck.


                              The problem there is that there isn't as much money in it for the bar to have "active listening" than say, a dj playing reggeaton all night.
                              CT/MA Music - A Site For Connecticut & Western Mass Bands/Musicians/Fans

                              Comment


                              • #60
                                Originally posted by fastplant


                                The problem there is that there isn't as much money in it for the bar to have "active listening" than say, a dj playing reggeaton all night.


                                Oh yeah, definitely. So... if you want to make money and get the big crowds, you have to be an "entertainer." All I'm saying is that if you don't do that, it doesn't mean you suck. It means maybe bars aren't the best places for you to play. Quite a few bands are figuring that out now and are doing house parties, coffeehouses, renting their own halls, etc.
                                What The...?
                                http://www.what-the.com
                                http://www.facebook.com/whattherock
                                http://www.myspace.com/whattherock

                                Comment



                                Working...
                                X