Tips for starting a band


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the_poison125
03-14-2008, 05:15 AM
This is an FAQ for newbs

I noticed theres a thread asking questions about starting a band every week so i thought i would make this. This thread should cover from finding members to what to play and how to find gigs. feel free to add anything or comment on this.

Now down to buisness...

AM I READY FOR A BAND?
this gets asked alot.
i think 1 year is a decent ammount. your probably not a noob by this stage but your not exactly a guitar god. The perfect time to start jamming with others to help you learn more.
of course you can be in a band before 1 year but id say 6 months is the minumum.

FINDING MEMBERS
Hardest part about starting a band is finding memebrs.
Ifyou still go to school chances are theres a musician out there willing to jam with you. ask around. hang around your schools music room.
put up flyers at music stores or where you get guitar lessons from.


GETTING GIGS
school tallent shows are an obvious one. usualy one a year.
parties are another good one.

-Always Get Gigs You Can Handle: If you`re not ready and you get one with too many people you will get scared, being scared makes you nervous (Obviously) and being nervous makes you commit mistakes. Also, dont accept gigs you can`t "fill" if you don`t know enough songs don`t accept.

-Contacts Are Everything: Get to know people in your local music scene, they will help a lot (talk to other people etc..)

-Give A Good Impression: Be polite to whoever is organizing the gig, else you WILL get the boot

When starting a new band set up a MySpace profile and add all your friends and some local bands to get gigs with (later on of course ) it works a treat

When deciding on which songs to play do the best songs you think you can play. If you have a mint guitarist yet a not so good bass player, then go for a song with a simple bassline yet maybe an awesome solo.

MOST IMPORTANT THING IS TO PRACTISE
get your band together once a week!!
Adecuate Practice Place:

-Well Ventilated (So you dont die in there)
-Big Enough (So everybody can move at least 3 steps in any direction)
-Organized (Amps on one place, drums on another and have accesories like mic's and cables where you can find them)
-Where You Wont Disturb Other People (Like your neighbors)
-Well Located (So everyone in the band can get there without any trouble, that happens to be an excuse for don`t showing up in the long run)

Practice Routine:

1. Have Your Goals Set - Know what you want to acomplish that day.
2. Warm Up - For about 10-15 mins warm up and plug everything in.
3. Practice Trouble-Songs - Get every song down tight.
4. Show Simulation - Play all your songs in a row, don`t stop if you make a mistake, look in the direction of the "audience" (some friends that are there or a couch full of teddy bears :p

the_poison125
03-14-2008, 05:16 AM
OK heres some songs for you all to start out with

Purple Haze-The Jimi Hendrix Experience
For whom the bells tolls - metallica
All the small things - blink 182)
Highway to hell - AC/DC
Smells like teen spirit- Nirvana
Come as you are - nirvana
Kickstart my heart - Motley crue (minus solo)

SOME GOOD WARMUPS
run through whatever scales you use. if you have 2 guitarists get them to play the same scale in time.

next go through a simple song together. smells like teen spirit works well for this.
you can also use for whom the bells tolls as that is fairly simple.

SOME IMPORTANT GEAR

Here is the gear for each member, the essential only:

Vocalist: Mic, Mic Stand, Mic Cable, PA System.

Lead Or Rythm Guitarist: Guitar, Pick, Strap, Cable, Amplifier.

Bassist: Bass, Strap, Cable, Amplifier.

Drummer: This depends on what covers you are playing, but the absolute basics are Drum Sticks, Throne, Snare Drum, Bass Drum w/Pedal, Hi-Hat, Crash Cymbal. From here you can add thousands of things.

Keyboardist: Keyboard, Keyboard Stand, Cable, Amplifier.

Percussionist: Bongos/Congas, Stand.
Now Extra Gear For Each Member:

Vocalist: Tambourine maybe???

Lead Or Rythm Guitarist:

-Slide
-Capo

Effect Pedals: This will be a bit of a big one...

You may wonder "what are effect pedals and what are they for?"

Well they are relatively small metal or plastic boxes (most times) that somehow change the sound of your guitar, here come some of the most common effects:

-Distortion: The effect takes the normal guitar signal and clips* it so that it sounds ditorted, now there are also different kinds of distortion pedals.

-Overdrive Distortion.
-Crunch
-Fuzz
-Hi-Gain Distortion
-Power Tube Pedal

-Filtering Related Effects: These take parts of the signal and amlify them or attenuate the other part of the signal. Some filtering effects are:

-Phase Shifter
-Wah Wah Pedal
-Auto Wah
-Rotary Speaker Simulator
-Talk Box

-Time Based Effects: These take the signal and modify it accordint to a preset time. Some time based effects are:

-Delay/Echo
-Looping
-Reverb
-Flanger

-Pitch Related Effects: These modify the pitch of what you are playing, some effects are:

-Octaver
-Pitch Shifter
-Chorus

Bassist: Also some effect pedals, only make sure they cover the bass frequencies.

Drummer: Endless possibilities.

Drums: More tom toms, timbales, another bass drum.

Cymbals: China, Crash, Ride, More Hi-Hats, Splash, Max Stax (Read Mora About Portnoy People).

Other: Cowbells, Double Kick.

the_poison125
03-14-2008, 05:17 AM
also reserved

the_poison125
03-14-2008, 05:17 AM
written by

the poison
theo_siordia

add45
03-14-2008, 05:26 AM
Very nice man, a good FAQ for starting bands/musicians.
I just have to point out though...

4. Show Simulation - Play all your dongs in a row, don`t stop if you make a mistake, look in the direction of the "audience" (some friends that are there or a couch full of teddy bears :p

:haha

Dan shreds
03-14-2008, 05:31 AM
yeah good job they should sticky this

MangeRamone
03-14-2008, 05:32 AM
nice doin!

Now get sticky with it! :D

FuzzyBear
03-14-2008, 06:24 AM
SOME IMPORTANT GEAR

Here is the gear for each member, the essential only:

Vocalist: Mic, Mic Stand, Mic Cable, PA System.

Lead Or Rythm Guitarist: Guitar, Pick, Strap, Cable, Amplifier.

Bassist: Bass, Strap, Cable, Amplifier.



are you for real? seriously?

Dunjma
03-14-2008, 06:35 AM
/\ lol, well its a good checklist for the forgetful type.

"remember boys and girls, when going to play a show, you must take your instrument"

theo_siordia
03-14-2008, 08:53 AM
Finally:D

the_poison125
03-14-2008, 08:56 AM
Finally:D

lol i had forgoten about the old thread... which i should probly delete...

SlackerBabbath
03-14-2008, 09:00 AM
/\ lol, well its a good checklist for the forgetful type.

"remember boys and girls, when going to play a show, you must take your instrument"
You can laugh, but I've known it to happen. :haha

The Evil Hat
03-14-2008, 03:49 PM
You can laugh, but I've known it to happen. :haha
must been awkward :haha

tylerprime
03-14-2008, 10:32 PM
I'm hoping to just drift by on total grunge like kurt did (I am from Hoquiam\ Aberdeen) AKA gayest town ever and birthplace of Kurt Cobain.

blacklabelsdmf
03-14-2008, 10:43 PM
good job on the steps of what to run through at practice. weve had to learn through trial and error of what to do, but where doing just that minus the show simiulation

SlackerBabbath
03-15-2008, 09:36 AM
must been awkward :haha
It wasn't too bad, we just borrowed a guitar of the support band, then bought them all a drink to say 'thanks.'

Gurgle!Argh!
03-15-2008, 11:35 AM
^don't forget that there's always the classic moment where three bands turn up all saying to the others 'but i thought you were bringing a bass amp!'. every promoter's favourite moment... :p:

strummin67
03-15-2008, 11:46 AM
I got to my first gig and realized I didn't have a cable. One of the other bassists was cool enough to let me borrow his for our set.

Agreed on the networking thing. Get to know people because I was amazed at how many people knew me and was embarrassed because I didn't know them! :eek:

SlackerBabbath
03-16-2008, 05:56 AM
^don't forget that there's always the classic moment where three bands turn up all saying to the others 'but i thought you were bringing a bass amp!'. every promoter's favourite moment... :p:
Heh, yeah, I've seen that happen too, but in that situation, you can always plug the bass straight into the PA system.
It gets a little more complicated however when they all thought everyone else was bringing a drum kit.
I remember playing a gig about 18 years ago, where the guy who organised the gig was doing so for the very first time and had become a little confused.
Someone had told him that he needed to hire a PA system, so he asked what a PA system did. He was told that it was all speakers and amps that made all the noise, so he hired a rig and told all the bands that all amps and speakers were provided, so on the night three bands turned up with nothing but their guitars and drum kits.
Luckily, we were based fairly local to the gig, (the other two bands had travelled quite a distance) so we went and picked up our backline and let everyone else use it.
I think the moral is, always take with you everything that you might need to a gig, and never leave anything to chance.

Dunjma
03-16-2008, 05:58 AM
You can laugh, but I've known it to happen. :haha

that is really, really sad. surely when your going through what gear before you leave the first thing you would check is that you have your guitar.


imagine how he must of felt while going there!

"I'm SURE i have forgotten something... hmmm..."

edit: how much are we betting i now do this at least once within the next year? $20?

SlackerBabbath
03-16-2008, 06:24 AM
that is really, really sad. surely when your going through what gear before you leave the first thing you would check is that you have your guitar.


imagine how he must of felt while going there!

"I'm SURE i have forgotten something... hmmm..."

edit: how much are we betting i now do this at least once within the next year? $20?
:haha
It was dark and raining cats and dogs and we were running a little late when we loaded the van from our storage/rehearsal place.
That's my excuse and I'm sticking to it! ;)
We'd rehearsed the night before and had left the guitars there. In the confusion of the entire band and roadcrew all loading up the van as quickly as possible, everyone (including the guitarist) thought that someone else had loaded the guitars.
The bassist had loaded his guitar, but assumed the guitarist had loaded his own guitar, the guitarist, who'd asked a roadie to make sure that all the guitars were in the van, assumed the roadie was sober enough to understand him. As it turned out it was actualy hidden behind a settee where he'd shoved it thinking it would be safer if anyone broke in overnight.
Since then, the only thing we've forgotten is the drum stool (which doesn't fit in the drummers kit bag) but the drummer has got so used to using a short bar stool, he now prefers it, and even stole one from a gig which he now uses regularly. He says it's much comfier on his bum. :D

Retro Rocker
03-16-2008, 10:37 AM
and even stole one from a gig which he now uses regularly. He says it's much comfier on his bum. :D
:haha That's great.

Dunjma
03-18-2008, 03:51 AM
are you saying that the all-knowing SlackerBabbath forgot his guitar? :p:

SlackerBabbath
03-18-2008, 07:16 AM
are you saying that the all-knowing SlackerBabbath forgot his guitar? :p:
Nope, our 'guitarist' forgot his guitar, or, if you want his excuse, someone else forgot his guitar for him. :D

Jack_hertz92
03-22-2008, 04:51 PM
Nice guide mate

Mockingbird452
03-23-2008, 12:09 AM
Yeah this helps get the ideas of starting bands. I remember reading a thread about "How to set up gigs" and it's really precise and has about every detail you'll need. Its hidden somewhere though.

:D

theo_siordia
03-23-2008, 01:40 AM
For the "Am I ready for a band" section:

1. The most important thing is for YOU to think you are ready to be in a band, if you've been playing for 3 years and still don't think you're ready to be in a band, then you should start considering what is discouraging you. Me for example, first band after 2 1/2 years, and I quit because I didn't think I was ready for it, so after I gave it a thought I realized that I wanted to be up to the level of all the songs I played (technically proficient), so now, I'm in a band and on reahersal I`m the one that messes up the least, mostly never, and finally I think I'm ready.

2. Now, you must be ready for the genre you're playing, for example I doubt you will be able to play malmsteen covers after one year, so you wouldn't be up to a shred band, but some AC/DC or Aerosmith, that you would be ready for, anyways you get me...

theo_siordia
03-31-2008, 10:09 PM
What section is lacking something???

Avedas
03-31-2008, 10:57 PM
This thread would be awesome if the OP had some semblance of spelling and grammar.

lolmnt
03-31-2008, 11:27 PM
This thread would be awesome if the OP had some semblance of spelling and grammar.I was about to meantion the grammar and spelling. There are run-on sentences, and multiple spelling errors.

The gear section is alittle much too. You don't need all those effects to start a band.

bob-thebuilder
03-31-2008, 11:59 PM
Add tom to the list of drums. It comes with most kits and is used in almost any song.

theo_siordia
04-01-2008, 12:13 AM
I was about to meantion the grammar and spelling. There are run-on sentences, and multiple spelling errors.

The gear section is alittle much too. You don't need all those effects to start a band.

Yeah, it says extra gear;) and i know my spelling is bad:(

bob-thebuilder
04-01-2008, 12:20 AM
Heh, yeah, I've seen that happen too, but in that situation, you can always plug the bass straight into the PA system.
It gets a little more complicated however when they all thought everyone else was bringing a drum kit.
I remember playing a gig about 18 years ago, where the guy who organised the gig was doing so for the very first time and had become a little confused.
Someone had told him that he needed to hire a PA system, so he asked what a PA system did. He was told that it was all speakers and amps that made all the noise, so he hired a rig and told all the bands that all amps and speakers were provided, so on the night three bands turned up with nothing but their guitars and drum kits.
Luckily, we were based fairly local to the gig, (the other two bands had travelled quite a distance) so we went and picked up our backline and let everyone else use it.
I think the moral is, always take with you everything that you might need to a gig, and never leave anything to chance.
It's better when someone forgets something and accuses you of taking it. "I'm a ****ing guitarist what would I want with your crash cymbal?" lol

SlackerBabbath
04-01-2008, 04:51 AM
It's better when someone forgets something and accuses you of taking it. "I'm a ****ing guitarist what would I want with your crash cymbal?" lol
Heh, next gig you do, gaffer tape his drum sticks to the ceiling above his kit without him seeing you, then watch as he goes crazy looking for them. :D

Sonic Blast
04-01-2008, 11:34 AM
Heh, next gig you do, gaffer tape his drum sticks to the ceiling above his kit without him seeing you, then watch as he goes crazy looking for them. :D

HOly Crap I wanna do that to my drummer!

SlackerBabbath
04-02-2008, 03:01 AM
HOly Crap I wanna do that to my drummer!
:D
And it works too, I've done it loads of times. (once played a gig where there was a buffet layed on, hid the drummers sticks, who eventualy grabbed a couple of chicken legs from the food table and played a solo with them, there was bits of chicken everywhere when he'd finished) I think it works so well on drummers because they naturaly stoop over so it's more difficult for them to look upwards. :haha