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How to approach this situation


nousername

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Earlier this month, we booked our first solo gig after a six song open mic performance. We need about three hours total of songs. There's seven rehearsals left to learn about 80 minutes more of songs. Yeah, I know. It's not looking good, simply due to other commitments. Three of the five band members say they want to gig, but then they say they don't want it to EVER be work; just a fun time. I keep thinking it can't be both ways.

We're opening for another band in two weeks. I'd like to ask them to come up and open for us so we can take some of the pressure off. But how do I approach the venue with our need/want to add an opener and not destroy what will hopefully be a budding relationship? Since we're not being paid for our opening slot, I wasn't going to offer to them. Maybe gas money? It's a 35 mile drive each way.

Side story: the guy who runs the Thursday open mic called me today and asked if my band could sub for his band tonight. Like nine hours later. We couldn't, but wow was it an ego boost.

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Seven practices is more than enough time to learn 80 minutes of material. That's 11 minutes per rehearsal, or roughly Three songs. If everybody does their homework this should not be a problem, I'm starting a new group right now and we have been adding ten songs per rehearsal because people have learned their parts BEFORE practice.

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nousername wrote:

 

 

 Three of the five band members say they want to gig, but then they say they don't want it to EVER be work; just a fun time. I keep thinking it can't be both ways.

 

 

 

It can't be both ways.   It has to be work, but work you enjoy doing.   Otherwise, it's just goofing off.

 

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Very doable but everyone has to do their homework and the practices should be organized.  For me, It has to be fun but you also have to put some work into it and having goals like songs to learn makes me a better player and that also makes it more fun for me.  Playing with a tight band of good musicicans is also fun.

I have a new band and we just had our second gig Friday night on a total of 5 practices.  Were we completely polished, no.  Did we mess up the structure of a few songs, yes.  Did we jam and sound good and did the crowd like it and applaud and dance and have fun, yes.  Did I have fun, yes.

 

 

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nousername wrote:

 

 

Earlier this month, we booked our first solo gig after a six song open mic performance. We need about three hours total of songs. There's seven rehearsals left to learn about 80 minutes more of songs. Yeah, I know. It's not looking good, simply due to other commitments.
Three of the five band members say they want to gig, but then they say they don't want it to EVER be work; just a fun time. I keep thinking it can't be both ways.

 

We're opening for another band in two weeks. I'd like to ask them to come up and open for us so we can take some of the pressure off. But how do I approach the venue with our need/want to add an opener and not destroy what will hopefully be a budding relationship? Since we're not being paid for our opening slot, I wasn't going to offer to them. Maybe gas money? It's a 35 mile drive each way.

 

Side story: the guy who runs the Thursday open mic called me today and asked if my band could sub for his band tonight. Like nine hours later. We couldn't, but wow was it an ego boost.

 

And you have just collided with a fact of life in bands: people play in them for differering reasons. Most people play for one of two reasons, though usually its some degree of both: 1) the band is the object. They want to get together with their pals, play some music, drinks some beer, and . be a 'rock star' for their friends and family for a weekend. They love being in a band and most of what goes along with it.

 

Then there are the guys who 2) see the band as a means, not an end. They may like the band, but playing the music well is more important to them. These types are less inclined to view band mates as pals and more as colleagues who come together to make magic. They may never see one another outside band practiuce and gigs, or care to.  These guys tend to be more serious about the work aspect of it, because playing gigs full of trainwrecks is not only not fun for them, it is often  painful for them.  The fun for them is not just the getting together and perforing in front of people and drinking beer. It is in delivering a tight product that makes people want to hire them and other musicians say "holy crap, those guys are good!" . 

 

Most guys are a combination of both, but lean more one way than the other. I'm definitely a type 2, which is one reason I don't currently have a band. I'm looking for like minded guys, but it's harder to find them here. But I can speak from experience, if you're a type 2 in band  with one or more  type 1s, you will become frustrated beyond belief. Ultimately, you will either have to accept that this is the way it is and these guys are happy with their limitations, or move on and find guys who are on the same page. It is unlikely that you will ever get them to change, and doing so will make this band a miserable experience for both them and you.  

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nousername wrote:

 

 

....... Three of the five band members say they want to gig, but then they say they don't want it to EVER be work; just a fun time. I keep thinking it can't be both ways......

 

 

You're exactly right.  This is your long term problem.  While you should be able to put together enough music for 80 minutes in 7 rehearsals, it sounds like you have a problem that I had with a band I was in two years ago.  Some of us wanted to gig, and some of us didn't care if we gigged or not.  Some of us were willing to play the crowd pleasing songs to have success in dance bars, and some of us only wanted to play songs that we liked, no matter how obscure they were.  A really important and often overlooked facet to putting a band together is everyone being on the same page on things.  As for this gig, you can do it, and you should definitely ask the other band to open for you imo.  Good Luck!

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New Trail wrote:

 


nousername wrote:

 

 

....... Three of the five band members say they want to gig, but then they say they don't want it to EVER be work; just a fun time. I keep thinking it can't be both ways......

 

 

 

 

You're exactly right.  This is your long term problem.  While you should be able to put together enough music for 80 minutes in 7 rehearsals, it sounds like you have a problem that I had with a band I was in two years ago.  Some of us wanted to gig, and some of us didn't care if we gigged or not.  Some of us were willing to play the crowd pleasing songs to have success in dance bars, and some of us only wanted to play songs that we liked, no matter how obscure they were.  A really important and often overlooked facet to putting a band together is everyone being on the same page on things.  As for this gig, you can do it, and you should definitely ask the other band to open for you imo.  Good Luck!

 

Agreed.. this is just silly. WTF sit down at home for a few nights and learn the damn tunes. I doubt you're doing Dream Theatre or something. I'd imagine many of us here have more than likely learned 3 hours of material in a week with ONE rehearsal. 

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guido61 wrote:

 


nousername wrote:

 

 

 Three of the five band members say they want to gig, but then they say they don't want it to EVER be work; just a fun time. I keep thinking it can't be both ways.

 

 

 

 

It can't be both ways.   It has to be work, but work you enjoy doing.   Otherwise, it's just goofing off.

 

 

What he said. Even if your motivation is to go out and have fun, you have to keep in mind you are getting paid to play, even if the pay is minimal. There are a lot of people that expect a minimal amount of professionalism out of your band, including the owner and the patrons. This professionalism includes being prepared to do the gig!!! If the guys in your band don't want it to be work, then don't book any gigs. The minute you're paid $1 to play at a public venue, you have to step up and produce whatever you're expeted to produce. If that's 3 hours of music, you better have 3 hours of music or don't expect a call back for another date.

 

 

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