Getting into a band as a beginner musician


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Tobyflyr
02-11-2011, 06:54 PM
Right, I hope this is the right place to post, otherwise feel free to flame and what not..

Im a beginner guitarist, at least i consider myself a beginner, I've been playing guitar for about 18 months, and i feel I've learned quite a bit i think my technique is decent I am able to play most of the solo's i attempt to learn at a (for me) satisfying level and my rhythm guitar is allright i think.

The thing is I'd really love to get into a band, but I don't know if I'm good enough to fool around with other musicians, Im not a very good improviser, my music theory knowledge is faulty at best and my 'hearing' skills aren't very good.

I have played covers with a few friends before but they're not interested in bands and one of them isnt the type of guy you would want to have in a band, very unreliable and such.

How should i go about finding people for a beginners band, and should I? or am i better off staying in my basement practicing untill i can recognize keys and play along right off the bat?

What to do, what did you do? I'm 21 years and noone i know at school playing music, at last not in a beginners level.

carnagereap666
02-11-2011, 07:01 PM
Well, you should get more experience. A little more than a years playing is just starting to get you into more advance techniques and in a little time, you'll be opening up a new world of experience. Would you rather go into a band not knowing what key they're playing in, or not knowing what the timing is? Or would you want to go in knowing exactly what's going on and what you're playing as you playing it?

Kortez3000
02-11-2011, 07:03 PM
Its not so easy to spot a musician. There should be others who play around your area, finding them is something else. I met a couple of musicians via Facebook and they knew somebody who played too.

Also know that some bands don't really care if you can't whip out some crazy solo or guitar licks. As long as you can play and write material then you're good.

AlanHB
02-11-2011, 07:05 PM
I regard all musicians as beginners if they haven't played with a band before. Playing with a band is a skill that you can only learn by playing with a band, not by tinkering around in your room.

As long as you can play a couple of chords competently I'd say you're good enough to join a band.

So how do you go about it? Same way as everyone else - check local music websites/forums, open mic nights, guitar schools etc.

Tobyflyr
02-11-2011, 08:16 PM
Hah, almost couldn't have gotten more diverse answers :P Well thanks ^^

But right there lies my problem, on one side I can see that it would be easier to get into a bad if i was a better overall guitarist, on the other hand i feel that the whole band experience is something that you can do regardless of skill, there will always be a cover track you can do, as long as a drummer can hold a beat and a guitarist can follow a chord progressions, the tough part is finding people at your skill level with the same musical taste, better start looking..

But keep the answers coming :)

Avalanchi
02-12-2011, 01:02 AM
If you do this, try to get a guitar-player whom is better than you. Swallow pride and play rhythm guitar. Most experienced guitar players will be MORE than willing to help you out with timing, stage presence, improvisation, and music theory.

Go underneath his wing. But take more about BEING IN A BAND: the dedication, cooperation with each other, organization, than anything else.

You can be the best musician in the world but if you don't have the skills of "being in a band". Then it won't matter.

AlanHB
02-12-2011, 01:05 AM
the tough part is finding people at your skill level with the same musical taste, better start looking..

Actually you require neither of these things to have a band. Ideally everyone should at least enjoy playing the songs that you play, but that doesn't mean their car needs to be full of cds of similar sounding music. For the skill level thing, a band just needs the ability to play music together. You don't have to all be playing for exactly 2 years and a first band for everyone. Often you'll join a band and someone in it will be far more experienced than you, you just use the opportunity to learn what you can from them.

cheapr2keepr
02-12-2011, 05:40 AM
Go attend some local open mic nights if your locale has such a thing. Check out the local bar scene where cover bands play. Usually a local cover band has a periphery of aspiring musicians around them. Both of these are great opportunities to network, talk, and find people of like desires. But understand that YOU will have to take an active interest in finding bandmates.

And like others have said, don't be afraid to hook up with someone with more experience. It's a way to seriously up your game, because nobody wants to be the weakest link in a band.

My band has been together for a year and a half. We did our first gig when drummer and rhythm guitar only had about 4-5 months on their instruments. Was it weak? Yes. Did we care? Not really, except to use it as a tool to get better.

Fraserwatt
02-14-2011, 11:54 AM
dont mean to hijack the thread, but I'm in a similar situation with my keyboard, what kind of skill level do you think you should be at to join/form a band as a keyboardist?

801Current
02-14-2011, 12:34 PM
If you are still in Highschool, you are lucky like me, I found some other musicians and we started a band... I would say look for other musicians at your level, then you are at the same place and work off eachother you will get better together and it will help you later when you are looking to play with others...but if you really wanna get going fast; start playing with people who are better than you. If you want to play in a band, play in a band, playing alone is different the quicker you pick up a band the easier it will be.

801Current
02-14-2011, 12:38 PM
dont mean to hijack the thread, but I'm in a similar situation with my keyboard, what kind of skill level do you think you should be at to join/form a band as a keyboardist?

It depends on the band you want to join, like i said above^^^, but if you want to join a band don't be shy because you think you are not good enough, in my book I would take a commited beginner keyboardist over a good one who doesn't show up to practice, thinks he is too good etc anyday.

but I am saying this thinking you have been playing long enough that you understand basic music theory and shaping chords, things like that, you wouldn't even need to read notation, but you have to be able to play what they throw at you, and understand it, which really is not that hard.

Arby911
02-14-2011, 12:41 PM
I regard all musicians as beginners if they haven't played with a band before. Playing with a band is a skill that you can only learn by playing with a band, not by tinkering around in your room.

As long as you can play a couple of chords competently I'd say you're good enough to join a band.

So how do you go about it? Same way as everyone else - check local music websites/forums, open mic nights, guitar schools etc.


Best advice here!

lespaul1216
02-14-2011, 12:41 PM
I joined my first band after about a year of playing and honestly I think it helped me get better. I don't think I would have progressed quite as well as I did had I not been playing in a band. It forces you to learn quicker in a way. Not to be a pompous jackass, but I've been playing for a little over 3 years and I'd say I'm probably better than most players with that amount of experience, because of my experience playing with other musicians.

Arby911
02-14-2011, 12:50 PM
It depends on the band you want to join, like i said above^^^, but if you want to join a band don't be shy because you think you are not good enough, in my book I would take a commited beginner keyboardist over a good one who doesn't show up to practice, thinks he is too good etc anyday.

but I am saying this thinking you have been playing long enough that you understand basic music theory and shaping chords, things like that, you wouldn't even need to read notation, but you have to be able to play what they throw at you, and understand it, which really is not that hard.

It's really less about the skill and more about the desire. The skill will come with proper practice, but there are no sure-fire exercises to build commitment and teamwork.

Case in point: I know a keyboard player that is truly masterful at pretty much anything you want him to play. He's filled in for some names you (and most everybody here) would recognize and at one time had a bright career ahead of him.

But he's a prima donna d!ck, and over time it's gotten to where nobody wants to work with him, so he's now stuck with a day job, the very occasional studio job and occasional micro-gigs with cover bands playing to 30 or 40 half drunk patrons who often give what the guitarist describes as 'a rousing wave of indifference'.

So get out there and do it. I can't guarantee you'll succeed, but if you never try I can guarantee you won't.

Natrone
02-14-2011, 12:57 PM
Basically what everyone else has said. Just do everything you can to find fellow musicians and try to set up some jams with them. Band experience is everything in the music world.

I'm lucky in the sense that my church started a youth worship band when I started high school, so basically right from the beginning I was able to start building band experience while my skills developed.