First band woes...


View Full Version : First band woes...

02-19-2008, 08:02 PM
My band is having our 3rd practice session next week (we just started practicing), and this will be the first practice session where our 2nd guitarist (me being the other, of course) will be playing with us.

As guitar players, we've jammed together many times, but not much with our drummer. I've jammed with him alone, and tried to come up with ideas, but every time we try to find a good progression that fits with a certain mood, our drummer either changes the vibe completely or does a complex fill that confuses us...sometimes he even changes tempos randomly without warning. I don't know if it's because it's my first band I've been in, or because we've played so little, but I just get major brain farts and can barely think of chord patterns during practice...not to mention our bassist just started playing around Christmas and doesn't know jack (we would get an experienced bassist...but either every bassist in our tri-state area is already in a band or they are horrid.) should be noted that we were going to have a singer as our 5th member, but instead I've decided to lessen my guitarwork and take up the lead vocals and rhythm guitar. Should I start trying to come up with lyrics while we perform the music, or get a mic and sing while we play? Would that help?

Any help on this matter would be appreciated!

02-19-2008, 08:08 PM
Drummers with tempo A.D.D have to go

cap'n curry
02-19-2008, 08:10 PM
whats the point of a drummer who can't keep tempo?

02-19-2008, 08:11 PM
I think you should wait on the new material and get like 2 covers down. That gets you used to playing with your band mates. And if you want to do vocals then you MUST have a PA and a mic or you'll hurt your throat. Also, about your drummer making everything harder, write a song with harder drums and then write something you want. Just so you all can be happy with the material.

02-19-2008, 08:12 PM
either your drummer is amazing (jazz is hard an thats what he would be doing), or he is absolutely useless. i cant tell by what youve said.

02-19-2008, 08:17 PM
either your drummer is amazing (jazz is hard an thats what he would be doing), or he is absolutely useless. i cant tell by what youve said.

Unless he's doing it accidentally, I seriously doubt he's jazz drumming, since he listens to metal/hardcore.

But yes...he does tend to change tempos a lot. He's trying to work on controlling himself but he just goes crazy randomly on his kit for no reason a lot of times.

02-19-2008, 08:20 PM
okay yeah that is bad, unless you are willing to put the time in and work with him on that i would say find a new drummer immediately.

02-19-2008, 08:34 PM
okay yeah that is bad, unless you are willing to put the time in and work with him on that i would say find a new drummer immediately.

I think it's kinda ironic actually...he's supposedly receiving professional lessons from a gospel drummer at our church, yet he can't keep a consistent beat going without either a weird fill or a tempo change :(

Get It Done
02-20-2008, 05:21 PM
which "tri state area" are you talking about?

02-20-2008, 07:27 PM
Well, I'm just going to tell you straight, this band is not going to sound good for a LONG time. Tell you're drummer to chill out and keep a steady beat and only change when there is an obvious opportunity. You're bass player is going to have to learn his shit and its going to take a long time, it helps if someone in the band is an experienced player and knows what they are doing. If you guys are all a bunch of total beginners, good luck with that, just practice alot and hope you guys start to come together, thats really all I can say.

Little Savage
02-22-2008, 06:03 AM
This sounds like the situation in my band. The drummer has only been playing for about 12 months and is still learning. He changes the beat, misses the occassional beat and is generally all over the shop. Me, being an inexperienced guitarist in a band, I find it hard to play at all. It's like he is trying to repeat his last lesson in the song we are trying to play.

I don't know if that helps, but I sure do understand your frustration !

02-22-2008, 07:22 AM
Getting a good band together takes a looooong time, I've played guitar for 7 years, it took 5 just to get in a surf cover band and two years later, I'm finally at the point where I'm meeting decent musicians. I feel like it took longer than many to get started, but then again, I see many people who never get in a good band.

A big part of it is simply getting better yourself, ultimately a band usually has 1 person who's the creative force leading the group, if that's something that no one is really bringing to the table, the band will just not have any focus.

Personally, if this is your first band, I would just keep it chill, don't have any expectations around it. Keep practicing, rehearsing, trying to play covers, write songs, find better members, get better yourself. But don't expect it to go anywhere, consider this band, and maybe the next few your in simply practice runs. But at the same time, enjoy what you're doing, don't simply treat it as a practice band by being apathetic and lazy. It's just I've seen too many bands getting caught up in trying to make it, that they don't realize they simply just don't have the experience to really draw a crowd, and after a little while Ia year or two), they get discouraged. It takes much, much longer to develop songwriting and interpersonal band skills than most people realize.

I rehearsed with a band an entire year before we played a show, then we broke up after playing one song at our first show. You have to be prepared to wade through lots of silliness like that, as well as acknowledge where your skill level is at to know where to improve enough so you can meet better musicians.

Being in your first band is a lot like being in a first relationship , it's usually not that great in itself, but people really get hung up on it and have way too many expectations about what it should turn into.

To me, it seems like you're at the point where you shouldn't even worry about defining the group of guys you play with as a band. It may not be working out with the drummer, but that's normal, most musicians you simply won't get along with. It's important to talk with them and try and find common ground, it's sort of a myth that you're really ever going to magically click with anyone, every musical relationship takes lots of communication and compromise. But at the same time, you should try and play with as many people as you can to find those that you get along with personally and musically better, where you see that potential to grow into a tight knit unit. Again, that just takes years of simply meeting people and getting better at your craft, and after a while, you'll be able to tell who you should keep playing, and who you should get rid of through these experiences.

02-22-2008, 08:28 AM
I dunno... I've been playing for three years but I'm already in four bands. All of whom are decent if not actually good. Actually, I must correct myself - I've only been playing bass for a few months. (One of those bands, I'm the bassist).

Bands will ALWAYS go through silliness, not just the first band but always. Only one of my four bands has gone smoothly and that's 'cause I joined AFTER they worked out all their issues. But I think that if there's that spark there - like there is with my original band - then you should really persevere. We've drifted through all sorts of music types. From the White Stripes to Green Day (yechhh...) to The Offspring, to (currently) Atreyu. Except we've sort of twisted it into freaky goth metal 'cause our keyboardist can do really WEIRD vocals and we're fascinated by it.

I'm kinda praying that when our drummer moves to the States for college (no offense to her, she's been my best friend for six years) we'll be able to settle into a fixed style. She insists on playing huge varieties (hence our setlist for an upcoming gig includes both a Bullet For My Valentine cover AND a Depeche Mode cover...) but BLEH, man, it gets annoying.

We already have a new drummer lined up.

AND I FEEL YOU BASSIST PAIN. I've been trying for about half a year to find a good bassist around here, the only decent one who likes metal is my girlfriend - and she's too shy to play around us.

We've got a guy who's just learning. He looks JUST LIKE Napolean Dynamite. It's not metal at all - but it IS damn funny. Still....gah...