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Have 5 weeks to learn 31 songs

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  • Have 5 weeks to learn 31 songs

    The classic rock/blues rock cover band that I run sound for will be down their bassist for their May 13th gig. The band leader has asked me to step in. He's heard me play bass for the blues band, which he used to sing for.
    more: mỹ đình plaza 2
    These are the songs I have to learn:
    - red house
    - kansas city
    - house is a rockin'
    - road to bakersfield
    - glory days
    - mr jones
    - promised land
    - r.o.c.k. in the usa
    - cover me
    - cortez
    - run to you
    - carl perkins cadillac
    - wild horses
    - take it easy
    - green river
    - wagon wheel
    - runnin' on empty
    - hard to handle
    - travelin' band
    - learning to fly
    - big railroad blues
    - can't you see
    - I shot the sheriff
    - somebody's baby
    - cinnamon girl
    - third rate romance
    - dead flowers
    - old time rock & roll
    - long cool woman
    - midnight rider
    - redneck friend
    more: chung cư triều khúc
    I figure I learn at least one song a night and practice them as I go I should be fine. I'm not going to try to learn anything note by note. That's a recipe for disaster imo. I'm just listening to the original and playing a bassline that works. I started with Big Railroad Blues and Can't You See tonight. A little nervous but I think I'll be fine.
    more: chung cư eco dream
    Last edited by adamjohnson; 12-08-2017, 08:16 PM.

  • #2
    Ought to be easy, unless you have little time to give it. I was taken on by a touring band and had to learn 17 songs in two days, and I was expected to play the original bass lines pretty much note for note. Very little room for error, and even less tolerance for improvisation. However, being retired, there was nothing else I had to do. I was a bit rough that first weekend, but I got by. No reason you can't do the same, if you have the time in your day.
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    • #3
      My strategy is always to write out the lyrics, with layout notes so I don't get lost. Once I do this and practice it a few times it locks in forever.

      If I don't write them out I forget where we are in the song, what the dynamics are for the section, when I need to do BVs, etc.

      The notes and actual playing is the easy bit.


      • #4
        I've had situations where I had to learn 3 sets in a single day and play out the following night. Of course those songs weren't highly complex and I had heard them many times. You'd be surprised what you can do when the pressure is on. Just block the songs out so you know the progressions and need be the main riffs used. If its a tough song tab it out till you know the patterns used. Make sure you have all the music to paly along with.

        You'd be surprised how much you learn by simply listening to the songs. Last cover band I played in they played me songs I never heard before. They though I was some kind of musical genius when I was able to play 90% of the song after only hearing the song once. (maybe to them I was)

        Once I know the key I can visualize pretty much the notes being played as they are played. I can then play along with others who know the song problem free. I don't remember the song that way long term however. Sometime large fragments will remain but rarely the whole thing.

        For long tem I usually have to write the patterns out so when I do commit it to memory I'm not committing mistakes to memory so analyzing it well is important.

        Then I listen to the music over and over till I have the music memorized and can play it back clearly in my mind.

        After that its purely a physical exercise to work my hands till they go to those notes without thinking about it. This part fixes any physical impediments that may prevent me from getting to those notes and it also builds the stamina to get me from beginning to end and have spare energy left over.

        Those three things, Listening to the song repetitively so you can hear it played back in your minds eye - having the structure blocked out in detail - Then having physically played the song beginning to end takes care of a good part of it.

        You still have to play the songs with others and adapt to their style as they adapt to yours. If you project confidence right from the beginning you can avoid all kinds of problems here. They will subconsciously be looking for that confidence so they can play their own parts well. Focus on what you do know well with self confidence and they will see that as strength and they will in turn give you back a strong performance which will carry you along with them.

        If you come into it worried about missing notes here and there you're looking inward instead of outward and you will be a burden to them as they feel they have to haul you along like a tow truck. The actual notes played can be exactly the same but its all about energy flow. See yourself as a pro session musician who can walk into any situation and back others.

        Have the confidence you can make others sound great when you back them. Fulfill their needs and make them sound good as you play and you'll find the songs come together in record time. If they are good people they will help you through any rough parts. They will admire your confidence and see you as a star performer in not time and not a green beginner who has to be spoon fed every note and looked over like a child all the time.

        Knowing the music yourself is important. Projecting that confident and professional mindset is the other. Show them you can be ready in two weeks. Then take the other three having fun playing together building confidence in each other and you'll put on a great show, and drop a few jaws when they realize you only been together for a few weeks.
        Last edited by WRGKMC; 01-12-2018, 07:04 AM.