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Sideman woes


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As some of you know I had a pretty successful band around here locally for almost 10 years.  We had a huge following, merchandise and had a big impact on the community . When everything went south last year with the singer it shook me really hard.  I almost had to get the cops involved with the singer but at any rate with some therapy and help from friends I have the energy back to go forward. I plan to bring my band back with new people but it will take time so in the meantime I am a sideman.  It’s strange I have fell into two original projects.  They do some covers but both artists have a number of albums on their own.   One is a horn band that is about and hour and a half away.  They rehearse once a month and have some shows booked. On the other end in western part of the state I am playing with a guy and a pretty good core of musicians which happened kind of by accident.  I sat in for a fund raiser and they hired me for some shows as they liked my playing.   In both cases people are very nice but I feel like a fish out of water.

 

On the one hand the horn band has some pretty good tunes but aren’t really keyboard friendly.  All the songs are in F minor and B flat minor.  Not impossible keys to play in but are a pain in the ass.   I feel like sometimes it’s tough to get parts in these tunes as they were not composed on piano.  Everyone’s nice enough but it’s tough to jump in to an already moving project.  I am learning 3 CDs of stuff and their covers.   The other band is Rock and Roll and some really good tunes and is a little bit easier as I am free to come up with parts.  I am learning material off 4 CDs of his stuff. 

 

One thing about having your own band is that you get to dictate small details that sometimes make 90% of the difference in your product. I was able to be hyper organized and it helped me propel my project forward. In both cases I can tell when a bass player doesn’t listen to a drummer or a guitarist that doesn’t listen to other musicians (big surprise there).  Or complaining about getting gigs which is weird.  It’s the easiest thing to do for me.   It’s a little hard to sit by and see problems in these bands that are not a big deal and can be solved easily.  I don’t say much as it isn’t my show but its hard to watch it unfold after my experience.  I try to take it for what it is but things don’t have to be that hard.

 

 

 

 

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I have learned over the years that typically no one in the band wants to be 'the DICK'. So easily remedied things get left to fester, and things tend to unravel. I have been 'the DICK' a few times. The last time, the band lasted over 20 years.

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On 4/28/2022 at 7:07 AM, Outkaster said:

Well I do know to stick up for myself. I wouldn't be passive aggressive.  Both bands have positives, it isn't all negative it's just hard to kind of sit by.

and it is fine, as a band member, to voice your opinion and make suggestions. The trick is timing and tactfulness...

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