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Posts posted by wheresgrant3

  1. I've been in the market for a gritty Analog synth to use in a progressive side project and the DeepMind for cost and programming blows me away (the only thing closer is the Moog Sub37). I'm using a Kronos, Korg Micro-x (I love that little Rompler pocketknife) and a Bloefeld for drones. All are very cool tools in their own way however I'm still needing some G R I T. I haven't tried one (no dealers near me) and I've read complains about fan noise (fans, shmams) but I'm curious about one thing: quality of build and road wothiness. We gig, we rehearse, I need a synth that can handle light road wear. Berhinger's gear has never failed me before however this is their first synth. I'm worried about knobs, sliders... screen display. If you do transport it, what case have you used? I may just opt for the 12M desktop synth with a controller. But I'm still looking for something that will be decently durable.


    Any owners here?

  2. Hey man, thanks. Nothing's changed really. When we turned the lights off with Nuts and About Last Night we really just put everything into storage. We didn't split equipment up and we had an agreement that down the road we could all take a few pieces and sell them off but to hold off until we were sure we weren't putting on a new show. So after 6-7 months when I got the call for the new band and if I wanted in for me it was really on a limited basis (thinking of the previous band's schedule). However seeing how dead the current scene is I'm fine gigging out 3-4 times a month.


    We have a similar line up as in the past. Actually members of the old band consists of me on keys, other keyboardist, bassist, manager/sound guy and lighting guy. The three new people are the singer (from a regional band that disbanded), his drummer from a previous band, and our guitarist who never played in Nuts but we always wanted him. Add in a roadie/camera guy and we have 9 guys helping to load in and set up every night. We still have our drum riser, the same light rig and TV's we invested in. Actually considering the cost of that investment I'm glad we spent as little as possible. All the gear is paid for. So why not use it.


    Some outdoor summer shows (Our Lights and sound)











    Halloween (Our lights except Front lighting... hired sound)









    The truth is that the drummer you spoke with is largely correct about classic rock. It's a genre that is finding a smaller and smaller audience with every passing year. Biker bars probably are the main outlet you'll find for playing live classic rock. But every market is different and will have its own little niches and venues. You'll figure it out as you start playing out and trying to get gigs.


    While I wouldn't say Classic Rock is making a comeback it is worthy to note that as the club scene is dying in my neck of the woods the only bands being able to gig are classic rock bands. That's because most will simply work for little to no money. So while our calendar dries up in regards with built in crowds and the ability to pay over $1000 per show, the gigs that are left are small neighborhood bars with a capcity of 50 or less and pay bands $200-300. I can count a dozen classic rock bands playing a handful of small bars. It is what it is. I don't expect it to change much as the nightclub scene here has all but dried up.


    In regards to songs for a setlist I'd advise checking out a few local bands. See what the set is like, what songs worked, how everything flows. Picking something off a recommended list says nothing about the region or audience you are playing to. If you are playing in California the Beach Boys could go over, yet on the border in Buffalo, Tom Cochrane and RUSH could be big crowd pleasers. I remember Scott, the keys player here from Arkansas or Alabama had Mother's Finest in their set. You could never play that in NY. Of course you'll have the standard crowd pleasers but I would think every area of the country has a slightly differnt flavor.

  4. Jamie.... good seeing you here. Sorry to hear about your accident, but good to see that you are healing up and still playing. I use a 10 year old Roland SP404. It's a pain in the ass to load and set up (will only read .wav files at 16 bit) but I will say it performs flawlessly. I own a Akai MPX8 and it's been pretty disappointing. The menu and bank navigation is confusing and the pads don't trigger as well as the SP404. The SP404SX can read MP3's with is handy.

  5. Well... being in the NYC area we've done about a dozen Bar Mitzvahs over the years and each event was split with a DJ. I can tell you from experience the band is there to purposely please the adults. The DJ is there for the kids and keep everything current. We played a few current songs, but mostly the requests were made for the adults. Given the fact that Poison, Twisted Sister, Journey, ACDC were hand picked by the clients I'm gonna guess (given their age) they and their close friends graduated in the mid 80's.

  6. So last weekend we played a Bar Mitzvah 2 1/2 hours away out on Long Island. We had been booked months ago without any real details through an Entertainment coordinator our drummer has worked with. We had pretty vague info leading up to the event until about a week ago. We knew we would be playing along with a hired DJ and that we didn't have to bring any lights and sound. The pay $2400. OK... sure, we'll take it. About two weeks ago we get the final confirmation from the Event Coordinator that we will play just two half hour sets and if we could play the following songs. Only a few are in our current setlist but we've all played with other bands. Sure, no problem.




















    We've all done our share of bar mitvah's, weddings and private events. So what made this different was that #1- We didn't use our name. We were used as a set piece interchanging with the DJ and the MC. We played two 30 min sets of music... that's all. In fact most of the time we sat around, out of sight, ate food and bonded.




    LOAD IN: 5:30pm


    Truck / trailer meet time 2:45pm at Pilot. (2.5 hr drive)


    ATTIRE: " black on black …so nice black pants or black jeans ,black shoes and button down …"


    SET TIMES: "8:30 -12:30 you will be performing on and off within that time "


    We get there at 5:15 and load in was a bear. There was a 17' box truck blocking the delivery gate to the country club so we had to unload the trailer a few hundred feet from the ballroom entrance. When we got to the ball room it was split in half by a large black curtain. On one side 200 chairs were set up for a reception. The other half all of the dining tables, staging, PA equipment, were packed on one another. When we first arrived the stage hadn't been assembled and there was very little room for our gear. So we had just packed our gear into the corner and waited until 7:30pm. There was a service between 6:30-7:30. Since it was the same room and vendors were still setting things up we were asked to leave out the back door to avoid disrupting the ceremony. The bummer was that there wasn't any food arrangements. We had to wait until guests puttered out of the cocktail lounge and then pounce on food trays that were litterally being stripped away. I think I had 2 peices of roast beef, some cocktail shrimp and some martini olives. LOL Then we waited until the ceremony was over and that's when the madness began.


    They had one hour with about 20 people to remove the chairs and restage the entire ballroom for the reception. The entertainment company already had assembled a 20 ft truss with 80" screen, but the lighting, moving heads, projector, and stage had to me arranged and assembled. Everyone was scrambling..... Things were literally down to the last min and 30 secs and they were still stringing HDMI cable across the ceiling to connect to the projection unit mounted on the ceiling. . We managed a quick sound check. Then they opened the doors and we left through the back door again until 10pm. Played the first set until 10:30. Left the room again until 11:30 and played till midnight.



    So 60 mins of performance, 5 hours of travel, 2 hours of set up and tear down and a lot of waiting around. I think I got home about 3am so it was a full 12 hour day with travel. After gas and tolls it was about $320 a man. Not a bad gig at all.



  7. We have two keyboard players... we handle a lot of synths, piano, horn arrangements, organ that most bands wouldn't fill in or would track. But we wouldn't think of doing it without guitar



    Um... it's an interesting concept. Not sure there's really a market for a band that plays originals/covers without guitar or a front person. But you no doubt play in a different market than me.




    Bingo!!! Most musicians are only in it for themselves. What if I owned the store and I only sold the products that I liked? Insane right? From a business perspective we should try to find some middle ground but the dominant criteria will always be whether or not the crowd likes the song.


    I don't think this is any differnt than how we have approached songs. We play for the audience not ourselves. It's been that way for over 12 years now.

  9. We've always had the motto that if you can't dance to it or chant along then it doesn't have room for it in our setlist. But that's just the recipe for our band. Our setlist and some of the presentation is what made us successful. However we weren't a Swiss Army knife band... something plug and play that would work in every market or gig situation. We were never that big in the professional gig market. It doesn't mean that we didn't make some great money in the clubs and doing weddings and events.


    It sounds to me that you are selling a 'certain' experience with your package. It also sounds like you have a lot of time and money invested. I hope for the work involved there is a return. As I look at the events market in the northeast the number of gigs are getting smaller so the top tier bands are booked without question. When any doubt agents, managers, club owners, event coordinators go with the legacy product they've been working with for years. It's tried and true. Southeast circuit might not have that same ironclad control over the entertainment.

  10. My modern country band does a medley starting and ending with Save a Horse Ride a Cowboy and going into pieces of Play That Funky Music, Get Down Tonight, I think we do all of Uptown Funk, then back to Save a Horse...


    Any of you guys play Save a Horse Ride a Cowboy? Seems like that would go over for any party band rock or country or what have you.


    We play Chicken Fried, Save a Horse and Country Girl Shake it for me all medleyed together. It's one of the bigger hits of the night and a complete left turn from covering 50 Cent, Taylor Swift and anything else on current Top 40. We tend to medley together genres of music. We have a Hair Band medley that covers "Here I Go Again", "Sweet Child", Living On A Prayer, Pour Some Sugar On Me.... and we have a 90's hip hop medley that includes It Takes Two, Humpty Dance, Jump Around, Insane In The Membrane, Brass Monkee. You can easily do the same with some danceable classic rock.... My Sharona, into Jessies Girl, into Just What I Needed into Bang A Gong.... It's all about the transition and flow.



    BTW... when we are talking Classic Rock... what currently defines that. Cultural definitions usually extend the period between 1967-1985... but most modern Classic Rock stations play rock up until the mid 90's. Our local classic rock station plays Kansas and The Grateful Dead at noon and GnR and Soundgarden after 8pm

  11. OH man.....you TOTALLY missed the 3 guys in the back walking out because they couldn't stand to hear your band play that waaaay overdone song' date=' didn't you? Total FAIL! [img']http://www.harmonycentral.com/forum/core/images/smilies/biggrin.gif[/img]



    LOL... actually if you look at 4min 8 seconds in the video you can spot the lone dissenter. Arms crossed, expression dour.... he is clearly not having a good time and he is surrounded by a sea of drunk party goers who are screaming this song. He must be a guitarist.



    • Like 2

  12. Classic rock songs that most everyone knows that haven't been played to death


    Pink Floyd: Have a Cigar, Dogs, Mother, Brain Damage/Eclipse

    Rolling Stones: Loving Cup, Dead Flowers, Midnight Rambler

    Led Zeppelin: Your Time is Gonna Come, What Is and What Should Never Be, Four Sticks

    Queen: Now I'm Here, Good Old Fashioned Lover Boy, Don't Stop Me Now

    Beatles: You Can't Do That, Rain, It's Only Love, Doctor Robert, And Your Bird Can Sing

    Doobie Brothers: South City Midnight Lady

    Eagles: Life in the Fast Lane

    Steve Miller Band: Swingtown

    David Bowie: Fame, Golden Years, Young Americans

    Spirit: Fresh Garbage, Mr. Skin, It's Nature's Way

    Elton John: Sorry Seems to Be the Hardest Word, Come Down in Time, Goodbye Yellow Brick Road


    Hate To pile on here but this is more of a B list of covers. As Guido said... this will play OK for the AARP crowd... but honestly even many of them would be scratching their heads. Play the hits... when you get into deep covers you are really creating a songlist for yourself and not the audience.

  13. LOL... well if that were the case (we have 6 performers 4 crew) then we should be earning more.


    ANY time a bar owner has told me that they have expenses to consider I point to the stage, our trailer and PA/lighting set up and explain "yes, I understand... we have expenses too."

  14. Outkaster.... say it aint so. People often ask me how my last band lasted so long (100 shows per year x 12 years) and the answer.... we didn't have any females in the band. LOL I'm only kidding about that generalization, but I do often find the life cycle of most female fronted cover bands in my area is 3-5 years UNLESS the founder is a female. Usually marriage or childbirth creates some serious challenges down the road. The fact that Guido is the band leader and... extremely patient guy lends to the success and longevity of his project.


    This is a somewhat funny aside. I recently got a call from a well know local wedding band. The bandleader wanted to know if I had any leads on capable drummers who could also sing. I knew of only one (sad I know) yet he was a very young Kid (22 or 23 I think). So when I mentioned him the band member chuckled and said "Well he would have been a good choice if he wasn't the guy I'm replacing". I was like "Oh man, sorry, I didn't even know he was gigging with you. How long ago did he join up." And the band leader replied that he just audtioned him a month ago. Two rehearsals went great... but by the third he couldn't help but notice the flirtation between him and the singer. So when he pulled him aside to ask him if he was interested in the singer, he found out already that they were already dating. LOL and had been since the first rehearsal. Mind you.... there's a 25 year age difference between the two. So the band leader said firmly... well you can date... or play in the band. One or the other. This isn't a decision.... I'll make the decision for you. Harsh, but true he let him go. LOL His point... this was not Fleetwood Mac and work place romances have no place in a working band.


    My response: Well I'm not sure whether to feel bad for the kid or give him the high five! The singer despite her age is pretty hot! ;)

  15. So, in addition too my mashup band I'm now in a 90s band... We have about 50 songs in the setlist with 10 backups but I keep getting surprised by songs we think will be ok filler but actually kill. I'll list some huge hits for us and if any of you have suggestions that would be awesome


    backstreet boys/n-sync - anything from either of these bands kill. every single time. We do Bye Bye Bye, Everybody and Tearin Up My Heart and they go over with any crowd from 20 year olds to 40 year olds.

    Plowed by Sponge - We started playing this at rehearsal and then actually learned it and we played it this weekend as the "one more song" encore and the crowd went crazy. Who knew?

    Friends in Low PLaces - duh

    Kiss From a rose - we rock it out a little more but everyone sings along at the chorus as if Seal had written it for them personally

    Small Things/Damnit - Poppy Blink 182 goes over every single time

    You Outta Know - IF your singer can nail this song it is amazing. Especially the part where the whole crowd yells "when you....**************** her"

    Wannabe - Can a group of dudes cover a spice girls song? Yes, yes they can and it kills and its actually a lot of fun to play

    The Sign - Ace of Base were apparently the best songwriters of their generation

    Teenage Dirtbag - You were insecure in high school? I was insecure in high school. Lets all sing about it.

    What's Up - Who knew that every girl on the planet knows all the words to this song? We do. Now.

    Iris/Don't wanna Miss a thing/Jumper - Slow sing-a-longs.. everyone will sing a long. One couple will awkwardly try to slow dance and makeout and make it weird for everyone.


    your turn...



    The funny thing is, thinking about it... 10 years ago we were playing the songs above BOLDED mixed in with a bunch of 80's tunes and they absolutely killed. Then about 5 years ago the pressure was on to be all top 40 and alot of those gems fell by the wayside. Now bringing them back is a whole new level of nostaglia.


    I'll throw in "Time Bomb" and "Ruby SoHo" from Rancid.

    "Semi Charmed Life" has always been a little hit or miss.

    "Hey Jealousy" total filler.



    Of course 90's hip hop is still hugely popular.

    We do Jump Around HOP

    Put Your Hands Up: Fatman Scoop

    Humpty Dance-

    Baby Got Back-Sir Mix A Lot

    Intergalatic-Beastie Boys

    Insane In The Membrane-Cypress Hill


    All get big response!


  16. For what we do, the dance/pop


    stuff works much better than rock stuff would.




    Our 90s medley is (right now) Push It/Pump Up The Jam/Whoomp There It Is/Gonna Make You Sweat/Wannabe/Groove Is In The Heart/Bust A Move.




    Its very strong for us early in the 2nd set


    It really depends the market you in, the audience you play for and the size of the venue. Also the market. Austin's setlist is full of nostalgia and guilty pleasures. BSB, nSync, Spice Girls... if you can pull off material like that (even as parody) you'll own the audience. Personally I find that 90's alt rock songs go over well in smaller spaces... audience in early 30's loving nostalgia. pack 50 people together in a tight room and bang out some Green Day, Blink and Sublime and the whole room is rocking. But in a bigger space to a wider audience of various ages, alt 90's just doesn't have the lift. We tried doing a 90's tribute last Fall and it failed. Primary reasons was the lack of a dynamic frontman and the song choices (Gin Blossoms and Live will get people dancing, but it doesn't really scream 'party'). This new band was a hybrid of setlists from the 90's band along with the previous party band.... and the party band material as cheesy as it is, just wins over.



  17. We just pulled an all 90's set we had (first set which had 311, Sublime, Goldfinger, Toadies, Presidents of the United States, Green Day). It wasn't that the set was doing that badly... but the hi hop, dance and novelty songs just performed so much better.And face it... songs do much better in the 2nd and 3rd set when the audience is lubed up.


    We're not trashing the set, but we are pulling out a bunch of songs that are just filler. This song is staying though. One of my favorites to play.




    Has always made me so jealous how you get so much great crowd footage, Grant. I've never got anyone I can hand off a camera to and get anything decent.


    But I'm glad you're posting again because it DOES remind me I've gotta step up my game...


    Well thanks... to start I have 5 years experience filming hundreds of live shows... I now have a 3 camera setup that I can set and forget.... but the best thing in this new band is that we have an enthusastic stagehand who loves filming and has a great eye. It took him a few shows with a little mentoring and the kid delivers again and again.



    He loves being in front and behind the camera.



  19. It has been pretty terrible here. Honestly its a chore to even log on and post. I'm sure many will post to the lack of participation but I've argued for two years now that this forum is the most unpleasant to post in on the internet, from a user experience POV. The software they used to upgrade this beast 18 months ago drove me and many others away. I laugh everytime I log in to reply to a thread how I'm jerked back to the home page and then have to make my way back to the thread I wanted to comment on. Way to go HC.... you know how to destroy a community. wink.png

    • Like 1

  20. Hey man! Good to see you. I haven't logged on in quite a while... not that I don't have much to share there just doesn't seem to be much of an audience here to share it with. ;)


    And I see Guido got band thru the Political Party forum. LOL A Kim Davis thread no less.


    I was out of it for 6-7 months and we formed a new band this summer. It was a slow start but things are picking up now. Some monthly gigs at an A-list venue and some offers for privates.


    I like your blog BTW.

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