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Old 09-21-2012, 03:56 AM   #21
91RG350
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TNA...youre gonna end up with no band...because the band sucks live....because the band cant get better in practice....because the singer cant effing hear himself. He's putting himself out there front and centre, man..... you guys need to give him every opportunity to succeed. If its impossible for you to down the volume by either adjusting your technique or using pracice pads, pillows etc....doesnt matter..the end result is that you are too loud. Sorry mate. Maybe the rest of the band can practice with a drum machine so they can control the volume? (Haha sorry mate thats a troll- I apologise )

Hes a good enough singer- he just needs to get his pitch right on each song- he cant do that if he cant hear himself
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Old 09-22-2012, 11:57 AM   #22
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Originally Posted by 91RG350
TNA...youre gonna end up with no band...because the band sucks live....because the band cant get better in practice....because the singer cant effing hear himself. He's putting himself out there front and centre, man..... you guys need to give him every opportunity to succeed. If its impossible for you to down the volume by either adjusting your technique or using pracice pads, pillows etc....doesnt matter..the end result is that you are too loud. Sorry mate. Maybe the rest of the band can practice with a drum machine so they can control the volume? (Haha sorry mate thats a troll- I apologise )

Hes a good enough singer- he just needs to get his pitch right on each song- he cant do that if he cant hear himself

I guess we'll have to agree to disagree. Your comments are coming from a guitar player, it's easy for you guys to say stuff like have better technique or use pads. Like I said before I am pretty competent at my instrument. I could just tap my drums, hold the beat, and get through the song. But then we're not really practicing the song, are we? If that's the case it might as well just be the guitar player and singer playing with a click track because that's basically what I would be reduced to. I could use pads, I have pads, but pads don't feel the same, and I didn't come to band practice to bang on some pieces of rubber. To compare it to a guitar player, it's like saying here use these rubber coated string, sure you can still play, but is it going to sound or feel right? Hell NO! Or maybe the better idea would be to have the singer invest in some gear. Like I mentioned I paid for everything we have. I bought a high end drum kit, why shouldn't the singer invest some money in a better PA system? Or even better just bring some headphones and then everyone in the band can hear him crystal clear.

I have provided solutions to be able to hear the singer better. Call me a stubborn drummer a-hole but I like to actually play my drums at band practice, which is at my house, using my PA, that is free to all my bandmates. The room we play in is completely empty with wood floors, the instrument sound really fills up that room. We've practiced at other places with a better room, and a better PA, and we could hear the singer fine. I bought that PA just to have a PA, before the band got together, I don't sing, I really have no need for that PA other than to just have it available. I even bought a headphone mixer, and several mics. I know you guys said don't blame the gear, but yes PA systems can be underpowered, it's not that uncommon.
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Old 09-22-2012, 12:57 PM   #23
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Originally Posted by TNA
Umm No? I know how to play my instrument very well. Sure I can drum quietly, but you don't play the same if you are trying to play quietly.


No, you don't play the same.

But every good drummer on the planet can rock out quietly. Every single one.


Quote:
You certainly don't get the same feel or rebound when using brushes.


No, you don't. But guess what?

Good drummers can compensate for that and still sound good.


Quote:
That's like saying to a guitar player, ok don't strum the strings too hard, oh and use this pick made out of tissue paper.


Every good guitarist can play quietly without relying on turning the amp or guitar down. Every single one.

It's called mastery of your instrument.

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I've taken lessons from drummers who are in platinum selling bands.


Well, take more lessons. Work on your dynamics. Pay less attention to how many records your teacher has sold and more to how good his technique is.

Every good drummer can play quietly.

For crying out loud, man - YOU HAVE A PA! It's not like I'm asking you to only play at the level of a quiet, unamplified vocal.

Oh, yeah. I've played with drummers who can do that. You know why? Because they're good drummers. The fact that you can't play quietly enough to avoid overpowering an amplified vocal is laughable.

Work on your technique.

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Sorry drums are a loud instrument and they don't have a volume control.


Neither does my acoustic guitar, but I can play it loud enough to keep up with electrified instruments (within reason) or quiet enough not to overpower a singer who's whispering.

Control of dynamics is a vital part of being able to play your instrument well. You need to develop that part of your skillset.

Or you could keep doing what you're doing and eventually destroy your singers vocals. But any halfway decent singer would have left the band by now because you obviously don't know what you're doing as a drummer.

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I know you guys said don't blame the gear, but yes PA systems can be underpowered, it's not that uncommon.


What you don't understand is that this is a problem that everybody who's played in a band has dealt with. Underpowered PAs are common.

You know what we all do? We adapt. We play our instruments in a way that works with the musicians we're with and the gear we have. That's what good musicians do.

Last edited by HotspurJr : 09-22-2012 at 12:59 PM.
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Old 09-22-2012, 02:14 PM   #24
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Originally Posted by HotspurJr
No, you don't play the same.

But every good drummer on the planet can rock out quietly. Every single one.




No, you don't. But guess what?

Good drummers can compensate for that and still sound good.




Every good guitarist can play quietly without relying on turning the amp or guitar down. Every single one.

It's called mastery of your instrument.



Well, take more lessons. Work on your dynamics. Pay less attention to how many records your teacher has sold and more to how good his technique is.

Every good drummer can play quietly.

For crying out loud, man - YOU HAVE A PA! It's not like I'm asking you to only play at the level of a quiet, unamplified vocal.

Oh, yeah. I've played with drummers who can do that. You know why? Because they're good drummers. The fact that you can't play quietly enough to avoid overpowering an amplified vocal is laughable.

Work on your technique.



Neither does my acoustic guitar, but I can play it loud enough to keep up with electrified instruments (within reason) or quiet enough not to overpower a singer who's whispering.

Control of dynamics is a vital part of being able to play your instrument well. You need to develop that part of your skillset.

Or you could keep doing what you're doing and eventually destroy your singers vocals. But any halfway decent singer would have left the band by now because you obviously don't know what you're doing as a drummer.



What you don't understand is that this is a problem that everybody who's played in a band has dealt with. Underpowered PAs are common.

You know what we all do? We adapt. We play our instruments in a way that works with the musicians we're with and the gear we have. That's what good musicians do.



Your claims are laughable. I haven't even told you how much power our PA has, how can you possibly even begin to claim that I can simply play quieter when you have no idea how loud our singer is capable of getting? No your acoustic guitar doesn't have a volume control, but just like drums there is only a certain range of volume those instruments can go. Even if you hardly strum, or smash the strings you have a fairly limited volume range. Same with drums. Dynamics and volume are very different. You think somebody like Dave Grohl, or John Bonham played their drums quietly? No. In fact if you are trying to play very quiet and not hit the drums with any amount of the force you normally would, you lose your dynamics. I never said I couldn't play quietly. I don't want to. Because then practices turn into some thing where we aren't playing the songs like we normally do, and to me that's not practicing. Also, I'm totally calling BS on your claim that your acoustic can be heard over amplified guitars. Anyone with a tube amp will overpower you the second they turn it past 1.

Oh but of course any decent singer would have totally left by now, because I'm not tapping my drums and playing indie BS music. "Oh that was great practice guys, the energy was really down, and I know when we play a show and play our songs completely different from the way we practiced we'll all sound great."

Of course I know that many bands face this same problem. But you know what many of them do? They get some money and go buy a better PA so then they can hear the singer. You can only adjust and adapt so far. But hey if we can all master the volume level of our instrument why even have amplifiers at all? Lets go all acoustic and the singer can not use a mic and we should be able to hear everyone fine if we all control our volume level right?

This is getting very off topic from my original post, so this will be my last response. If you think I'm some neanderthal who has no technique and can only bash away aimlessly on my drums until finally the rest of the band gets so fed up and leaves, then so be it.
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Old 09-22-2012, 10:03 PM   #25
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I don't want to.


This is what it amounts to. You don't want to.

What you don't understand that, as soon as you start playing with other musicians, it's no longer about you. It's about the band as a whole.

I could go further than that and say that the moment you start playing with a singer, it's about the singer, and if what you're doing doesn't work with what the singer is doing you change.

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I haven't even told you how much power our PA has, how can you possibly even begin to claim that I can simply play quieter when you have no idea how loud our singer is capable of getting?


It doesn't matter how much power your PA has. You have a PA. As I said - I've worked with drummer who can ROCK OUT while supporting an unamplified vocal. Having a crappy 20-watt PA would have been great - but they made it work.

And, of course, "the gear sucks" is not an excuse that's going to work the second you start getting gigs. Because you know what? Sometimes the PA will suck at a gig. Sometimes you won't get the support from the sound man you need. You know what you do to put on a good show in those circumstances?

You listen to each other, and you support each other, rather than trying to overpower each other.

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You think somebody like Dave Grohl, or John Bonham played their drums quietly? No.


I think they are/were both very capable of playing the drums very quietly when it was appropriate. I think your wording here is giving something away. I'm telling you to develop the ability to play quietly and still rock out, and you're pointing to examples of people who generally, didn't play quietly.

Well, guess what? Dave Grohl wasn't usually in a situation where he HAD to play quietly. You are. But of course Dave Grohl was completely capable of supporting an acoustic set as a drummer, which suggests that he knew how to vary his playing. He certainly played very differently during - for example - Nirvana's MTV unplugged set than he did during a typical Nirvana show.

You might be able to learn something from that.

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Because then practices turn into some thing where we aren't playing the songs like we normally do, and to me that's not practicing.


It's not practicing if you can't hear each other, and it's not practicing if you can't move like you want to because you're stuck with headphones on, either.

Quote:
Also, I'm totally calling BS on your claim that your acoustic can be heard over amplified guitars. Anyone with a tube amp will overpower you the second they turn it past 1.


Well, if they WANT to they could easily overpower me. But that's the difference. You see, I play with good musicians who have control of their dynamics, and if they want to play with me and I'm on an acoustic they adjust, and I adjust, and we find a space we can both work with.

They don't crank up their 50-watt marshall heads and set all the dials to 11. But I've played acoustic with people on amps like a Blues Jr or a Blue Velvet with zero problems whatsoever. The bassist I usually play with is on an 80-watter, IIRC, and we never had any trouble. So you can call "bullshit" all you want but you don't know what you're talking about. And the drummer - well, honestly, the drummer I played with is the guy who taught me a lot of what I know about dynamics.

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"Oh that was great practice guys, the energy was really down, and I know when we play a show and play our songs completely different from the way we practiced we'll all sound great."


Are you playing any shows at all, now? Right now you sound like crap because you can't hear each other and your singer is pushing himself out of his range. I mean, that's what started this, right? You were worried that he wasn't a good enough singer. It never occurred of you to ask what you might be doing which was contributing to the problem, did it?

The thing is, if you can play quietly with intensity, it's EASY to play louder. Seriously - getting louder is simple. Doesn't require a lot of practice of sophistication. You would know this if you bothered to learn how to play quietly with intensity. But a quote like:

Quote:
because I'm not tapping my drums and playing indie BS music.


makes your own musical tastes abundantly clear. You're one of those kids who things that turning things up to 11 makes them sound better. That's okay, you'll learn. Probably. Hopefully you won't go deaf first.

Quote:
Lets go all acoustic and the singer can not use a mic and we should be able to hear everyone fine if we all control our volume level right?


You do recognize that this is called a "straw man" argument, right?
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Old 09-23-2012, 12:32 AM   #26
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get your singer to take lessons. If he can be a great frontman with at least a good voice, then he/the band may be able to go far.
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Old 09-23-2012, 01:07 AM   #27
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how often does your singer practice singing on his own? Is it only when singing to music turned up loud? In the car and in the shower? Or does he practice properly?

If he is doing proper practice he is doing something wrong and could use a good vocal coach. If he isn't practicing then why the hell not. You the bassist and the guitarist no doubt all practice your instruments he should too.

It takes more to be a singer than to stand up on stage and enjoy being the centre of attention. There are plenty of clowns that can do that for you. There are plenty of good singers out there. But if he can do both pretty well - awesome.

Some people are naturals some people have to work hard at it. Sounds like he could do some more work.

If you don't know how to tell him that in a positive way that will help him then just drum and put up with it.
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Old 09-24-2012, 03:51 AM   #28
91RG350
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Theres a difference between practicing at home with good technique and then having to go to band practice and scream at the brink of your physical ability just to be faintly heard among the cacophony of noobs turning every dial to 11.

Problem- singer cannot be heard.

Answer- Singers volume goes up or everyone elses goes down.

Remember...this may only be needed at practice- you may play gigs with a house PA..problem solved.

Stuff a couple of couch pillows into the drums and play with all the intensity you want. Its your right to rock out at practice for sure- I agree totally...

Bands are a brother/sisterhood.... like a sporting team or a military unit or whatever.... right now one of the band cannot be heard at practice. Bands that survive will solve this problem. Bands that dont...wont...
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Old 09-24-2012, 08:56 AM   #29
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When I used to rehearse in our school's rooms we had tiny amps and a fairly loud drumkit/drummer. We solved it by getting the drummer to calm down. The result was balanced volumes and everyone capable of hearing everyone else. Sure, when we used the studio rehearsal rooms with the PA and louder amps he played as hard as he wanted, we just simply turned up. Our drummer did it (granted it was hard for him at first) with practice.
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Old 09-24-2012, 09:22 AM   #30
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Originally Posted by HotspurJr
Brutal truth time.

You are the problem.

Use brushes rather than sticks and learn some technique.

Every good drummer can drum quietly.



I agree with this completely.

Man up and dampen your drums a bit.
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Old 09-25-2012, 12:01 PM   #31
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My two cents

It's all about hitting the right pitches.


Think of playing a chord progression in C on a piano. If you get a monkey to hit only white keys, it doesn't matter what he hits; it will always sound right. It may be off tempo, but in that case you can just pass him off as an avant-garde monkey.

That's how bands like The Mars Volta get by. He may not be the best singer, but he can match the pitches so you can just chalk it up to the style; it sounds weird, but it technically fits.

However live, it's a completely different story. If you look up bands on let's say YouTube, local type bands, usually if the singer is mediocre too bad, but gets the audience into it, they still go crazy. The atmosphere of a concert changes people's opinions. For most normal people the crowd mentality overrides their perception of your skill. That's why if you look at crappyish bands people still get all into it if the lead singer or whoever is the lead member gets really into it. As long as you can get him to match the key of the song you're golden, and that can only come with practice and experience.

tl;dr Just try and train him to hit the correct pitches better and you'll be fine, stage presence is a big plus and if he can nail that then its worth it to keep him and try to help train his voice rather than replace him.
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Old 09-25-2012, 12:47 PM   #32
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Originally Posted by pursuit
tl;dr Just try and train him to hit the correct pitches better and you'll be fine, stage presence is a big plus and if he can nail that then its worth it to keep him and try to help train his voice rather than replace him.


There are almost no singers who will be able to maintain pitch accuracy while struggling to be heard over a bunch of guitarists turned up to 11 and a drummer who thinks that he should be able to play as loud as he wants to play with no consideration for anyone else.

You can not sing accurately if you can't hear yourself. And you can not sing accurately if you're outside of your volume comfort range. Yes, that comfort range can be expanded with practice, but even an opera singer (and those guys have freakish volume) would struggle to keep good tone singing on top of a drummer who refused to accommodate the singer.

When a singer tries to sing lounder than they should, all sorts of bad things happen. THe least of these is an inability to control pitch. You get poor articulation and resonance. You can also tweak or permanently damage your vocal folds.

In other words, trying to sing louder than you can comfortably do so is a disaster on every level. You should NEVER ask your singer to do it.
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Old 09-25-2012, 10:13 PM   #33
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Originally Posted by HotspurJr
There are almost no singers who will be able to maintain pitch accuracy while struggling to be heard over a bunch of guitarists turned up to 11 and a drummer who thinks that he should be able to play as loud as he wants to play with no consideration for anyone else.

You can not sing accurately if you can't hear yourself. And you can not sing accurately if you're outside of your volume comfort range. Yes, that comfort range can be expanded with practice, but even an opera singer (and those guys have freakish volume) would struggle to keep good tone singing on top of a drummer who refused to accommodate the singer.

When a singer tries to sing lounder than they should, all sorts of bad things happen. THe least of these is an inability to control pitch. You get poor articulation and resonance. You can also tweak or permanently damage your vocal folds.

In other words, trying to sing louder than you can comfortably do so is a disaster on every level. You should NEVER ask your singer to do it.


Ahhhh this was my reading mistake, I didn't get up to the part where it was established that the volume of the instruments at practice was the root of the problem, my apologies!
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Old 10-03-2012, 01:27 PM   #34
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He needs work, but his voice isn't bad and if he's a good front-man make it clear that any criticisms aren't meant to be offensive. He's definitely flat though... Like in a painful way a lot of the time. Like so close that it hurts rather than so far off, which is the better end of 'bad' to be on. A few sessions with a vocal coach, or just trying to have him try to sing to pitches played on another instrument so he can get the experience of what it 'feels' like when you sing the right note vs. the wrong one...

The volume of practice is also important... A decent PA goes a long way and ear plugs are a must for everyone. If you can't hear him over everything else you need to back stuff off a bit and/or play around with everyone's EQ to create room for him in the mix.

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Old 10-20-2012, 09:44 PM   #35
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not a bad singer at all. id say my singer is worse, and he does just fine.
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Old 11-05-2012, 06:13 PM   #36
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This helped us in pretty much the same situation

http://www.amazon.com/Galaxy-AS-900...axy+audio+as900

Works great for a budget system.

hth
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