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  • Tired of wasting time at band rehearsal?

    Then you might want to check out this article for some tips on how to make your band practices more efficient.

    If you have any tips on how to make band practice more fun and productive, please share them with everyone! And if you have comments or questions about the article, feel free to post those here too.

    **********

    "Look at it this way: think of how stupid the average person is, and then realize half of 'em are stupider than that."
    - George Carlin

    "It shouldn't be expected that people are necessarily doing what they appear to be doing on records."
    - Sir George Martin, All You Need Is Ears

    "The music business will be revitalized by musicians, not the labels or Live Nation. When the musicians decide to put music first, instead of money, the public will flock to the fruits and the scene will be healthy again."
    - Bob Lefsetz, The Lefsetz Letter

  • #2
    I think I trained that group I'm working with last night that if they want to practice keyboard songs they should do it while I'm there because I have an hour and a half drive and at 8:30pm I'm out the door and down the road!


    (1/23/2018, post gig) Looking back on this post it might appear to be rather negative but it really wasn't meant to be. This was a HUGE project and far from just an ordinary gig, it was a major production with several different lead vocalists in a professional venue that routinely hosts big time talent far beyond me. I was part of the rock band that did this show with the symphony orchestra ferchristssake! There were costume changes, a number of elements you could easily associate with a Vegas style show and a first chair violinist that made it difficult for me to hold back tears of emotional joy so yeah, it was difficult for the organizers to coordinate all the elements of this production and I was extremely fortunate and honored to be a part of it!
    Last edited by ggm1960; 01-23-2018, 11:31 AM. Reason: Update

    Comment


    • #3
      i love working solo...
      Originally posted by isaac42;n32240445

      Voltan is correct.

      Comment


      • Phil O'Keefe
        Phil O'Keefe commented
        Editing a comment
        It does have certain advantages...

    • #4
      The biggest thing for me is figuring out the start time. Some groups I work with specify the arrival time. Others specify the time we are expected to start playing. I prefer the latter!!! But there is nothing more annoying than getting this wrong.

      One more tip - for cover acts - have the commercial recordings available so that you can reference them if needed. We just had an entry point question last night; one member was convinced his part started on 2 but was supposed to start on 4. 3 minutes of messing around did not yield an obvious answer. 30 seconds of listening did.
      Do daemons dream of electric sleep()?

      Comment


      • Phil O'Keefe
        Phil O'Keefe commented
        Editing a comment
        Great suggestion!

    • #5
      Shoot, my band rehearses roughly once a month, or whenever we have new material. Everyone knows their parts cold. I know I'm fortunate, but I can really count on my guys.
      http://thekiltlifters.com

      Comment


      • Phil O'Keefe
        Phil O'Keefe commented
        Editing a comment
        You are indeed a lucky man.

    • #6
      I sent that link to everybody in the band. We have one guy who has been an incurable noodler since 2004, even -- no, especially -- when we're trying to discuss something, and looks like his feelings are hurt whenever someone asks him to stop. Another insisted that his drinking during practice didn't affect his playing, but he finally stopped anyway... after recently getting a ticket for driving while intoxicated. That guy lives an hour away, so we're all wondering what's going to happen if he loses his license. >:-(
      ---
      Jim
      Keys: Roland Jupiter-50, JX-8P; Alesis QS8.1; Korg DW-8000, Mini-Korg (original); Moog ConcertMate; Farfisa Compact Deluxe. And other assorted stuff.

      Comment


      • #7
        Thank you for sharing the article. I hope they take it to heart Jim. Best of luck!
        **********

        "Look at it this way: think of how stupid the average person is, and then realize half of 'em are stupider than that."
        - George Carlin

        "It shouldn't be expected that people are necessarily doing what they appear to be doing on records."
        - Sir George Martin, All You Need Is Ears

        "The music business will be revitalized by musicians, not the labels or Live Nation. When the musicians decide to put music first, instead of money, the public will flock to the fruits and the scene will be healthy again."
        - Bob Lefsetz, The Lefsetz Letter

        Comment


        • #8
          Nice article Phil. I would add make sure everyone is working from the same version of a song and knows which parts to learn, key, etc. EG: I am first guitar but I share some lead duties with our other guitarist so we discuss who is to learn what. My current band is super organized; mp3's and charts are put up on a site. We gig about 4 times per month and only practice once every 3rd or 4th month when we are adding new songs. Everyone does their homework and we usually add 4 songs per practice going through each 2 or 3 times and then coming back and repeating all to end the session.

          Another thing I like about this band is we always play the same setlist and when we add songs we drop an equal number. Makes gigs easier and everyone always knows what we are playing next.

          This is both the most professional and most fun band I have ever been in. Communication is key!

          On the other hand, I am also in a jam band that gets together most Monday evenings and is not focused on gigging. We are completely unstructured and also have a blast. We do have certain songs that we have gotten down and we have gigged a few times, however, our focus is on just playing what we want and, well, jamming.

          Comment


          • #9
            Band rehearsals can drive me crazy. My tribute band cuts too many corners when learning songs with the attitude "it's good enough" or "no one will know the difference". For the most part they are right, given our usual venues and audiences (and that the performances are enthusiastically received). But you never who is watching. My view is that we need to do it like the record in order to break into the next level, something that depends entirely on the players as the vocals are stellar. Maybe the biggest frustration, however, is that with the "roll your own" chords/breaks/modulations you can't refer subs or members not present at practice to the record as a point of reference, and on the gig you have to just remember whatever the hell it is you did, with no means of refreshing your memory before a gig.

            Ideally, country bands would have members well seasoned and steeped in country music standard songs and styles, who have good ears and can quickly and accurately pick out sig licks, and if not copping leads note-for-note, at least get the gist and flavor of it. Who can write and read Nashville number system charts (players who say "oh I don't need to do that, I just play from the heart" seem to be the ones who need that skill the most). And tribute bands would have members who genuinely like and are into the material, who listen to it for their own enjoyment. Fortunately, the band is undergoing some personnel changes that will bring us closer to that ideal. And hopefully lesson the need for a rehearsal before every gig.

            Comment


            • AJ6stringsting
              AJ6stringsting commented
              Editing a comment
              I come from the same school of thought, if I do a Yngwie Malmsteen or Neil Young cover, I'm doing it note for note ... Verbatim.
              It's disrespectful to the writer / artist and the audience to do so other wise .

          • #10
            Article was good...pretty obvious stuff though. People don't take it seriously. I have two women in the band. They are OK but get distracted sometimes and when the rehearsal is long people tend to fade. It's a hard thing to juggle sometimes.
            "Danny, ci manchi a tutti. La E-Street Band non e' la stessa senza di te. Riposa in pace, fratello"

            Comment


            • #11
              Update:
              When the noodler was still noodling at the last rehearsal, I asked him, "Did you read that article that I sent?" He replied, somewhat defiantly, "Yeah." Sigh.

              The other guy, who has supposedly quit drinking, lost his license for 7 months. So far, it looks like he has alternate transportation to rehearsals & gigs, though.
              ---
              Jim
              Keys: Roland Jupiter-50, JX-8P; Alesis QS8.1; Korg DW-8000, Mini-Korg (original); Moog ConcertMate; Farfisa Compact Deluxe. And other assorted stuff.

              Comment


              • #12
                Originally posted by Phil O'Keefe View Post
                Then you might want to check out this article for some tips on how to make your band practices more efficient.

                If you have any tips on how to make band practice more fun and productive, please share them with everyone! And if you have comments or questions about the article, feel free to post those here too.
                This is an old thread, but the article is great!

                "Learn your parts at home first" is something that should probably be written in every country's constitution. In my experience I've only really had one bad case of this, a singer that would do absolutely nothing between rehearsals. Having to read the lyrics because you don't remember then is not a big deal, but not even knowing the song structure and when you're supposed to sing your part is definitely a dealbreaker (in fact we kicked her out). I've had other players coming to rehearse unprepared without good reasons, and generally speaking my suggestion is just rehearse whatever you've planned and let them feel miserable as they can't play along: eventually, if they have some self-esteem, they'll learn to be more reliable.

                "Don't invite your SO or your friends" was never really a big problem for me, as long as such friends are not allowed to disrupt the practice. Which can happen if they are the kind of people who need to grab everyone's attention when they become bored... those should definitely be not invited.

                "Turn off your phones" is like the modern-day plague... seriously if someone cannot put the phone down for one hour to do something which they supposedly like, they need therapy.

                "When the music stops, STOP PLAYING!" this is the only one which admittedly I have been guilty too! Tho definitely not nearly as much as our old drummer, to whom we often had to confiscate the sticks from (or beat him with a chair) to make him stop. To me this is often a sign of not being engaged enough with the rest of the band, possibly even a bit narcissistic. If there's a prolonged break (say, more than a minute) it's usually because there's something to discuss, and that is where it shows how much each player is devoted to the band's mission. Even if the discussion is unrelated to your own instrument!

                Comment


                • #13
                  Thanks for checking the article out folks!
                  **********

                  "Look at it this way: think of how stupid the average person is, and then realize half of 'em are stupider than that."
                  - George Carlin

                  "It shouldn't be expected that people are necessarily doing what they appear to be doing on records."
                  - Sir George Martin, All You Need Is Ears

                  "The music business will be revitalized by musicians, not the labels or Live Nation. When the musicians decide to put music first, instead of money, the public will flock to the fruits and the scene will be healthy again."
                  - Bob Lefsetz, The Lefsetz Letter

                  Comment


                  • #14
                    We usually rehearse at my house, so the SO is always there. Bonus: she feeds us! Even at our last studio session, she came by and dropped off lunch for everyone.
                    http://thekiltlifters.com

                    Comment


                    • #15
                      Hardly anyone ever puts articles about efficiency issues to increase the values of practice ....
                      How many guitarists does it take to screw in a lightbulb ? Five , one to screw it in , hit the switch and four to sit around bragging how much better they could have done it !!!! 😱👹😲

                      Comment

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