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Old 05-11-2014, 04:58 PM   #1
Michele_R
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Your needs/expectation from a band

Maybe it's a silly question, but I was wandering about the things a musician needs to feel good in a band; what is indispensable, what is irrilevant, and what is unacceptable.

I would like to know your points of view on this matter.
So, what makes you feel satisfied about being in a band? And what makes you completely disappointed/pissed off about it?

Some elements I'd like you to consider:

-MONEY (is there a minimum you want to be paid for a gig? if so, what is it like? If not, do you feel accettable the fact that someone wants the band to attend only gigs for a minimum of cash and vice versa, is it accettable for you to be expected to gig under your minimub budget?)
-LEADERSHIP/RELATIONSHIP between band members (as it says, what would be ideal and what wouldn't you accept? also, do you need to feel some friendship with others or is a "professional" relationship enought for you?)
-CRITICISM/COMMUNICATION (what kind of comunication/criticism is ideal and what is unacceptable, if any; also, what level of criticism/advice do you expect the other band members to accept from you?)
-ORGANIZATION (meant as setting goals, if you are a cover band, how often you add new songs; how often you go to reharshals etc.)
-MUSIC (style of music you play/musical style agreement when composing)
-IMAGE (maybe this is the most overlooked...with image I mean both the "artistical" side of the band -as logo, stage show, costumes if any- and the pubblic relation side -what style do band members use when comunicating via social networks etc.)

Also, how do you look at the band? I mean, do you see it like something just for fun or something that needs a solid structure that makes stuff work at their best?

I've just beed kicked from the band I was playing with, basically because we didn't agree on a lot of stuff; and it seems I was considered too young/noob to speak my mind, but sadly I'm used to say things I think have to be said.
I realized some time ago that I wasn't satisfied about almost anything in the band, except for the musical side (I think we had a huge potential, and since we were a tribute band, we all enjoyed the songs we performed); so, I would probably have ended by quitting anyway.

I just wanted to check if I'm too ambitious about how things should work in a band or I was legitimately disappointed and pissed off by the situation!

Thanks for all who will spend their time giving their opinion!
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Old 05-11-2014, 06:03 PM   #2
Omnius
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-MONEY - Being paid is awsome, but (for my band at least) it's not what we're here for. Discuss it with your bandmates up front - you shouldn't take it for granted.

-LEADERSHIP/RELATIONSHIP - The dearest vocalist in my band put it down quite elegantly one time: "listen bro, we're gonna be stuck up each others' asses every day for a very long time if things go the way we want them to, so we have to get along with each other". Meaning it's ok to be more friendly with certain band members than with others, but you have to get along with all of them.

-CRITICISM/COMMUNICATION - That really depends on any situation... Ideally it should be where anyone from the band can tell any other exactly what they think without any sugarcoating... That is rare, however. What I absolutely won't take? The view of someone who clearly doesn't know what they're talking about (amp advice from a guy who can't juggle his channel volume vs. master volume for instance). Also, people shooting down any new idea but not giving any ideas of their own.

-ORGANIZATION - In my band we decided on at least one rehearsal per week... if you don't use it, you lose it, and unless you're planning on playing 12-bar-blues for the rest of your life you'd better put in that practice time!

-MUSIC - While during the composing part you may (and will) disagree on a lot of things, it's VITALLY important that everyone's ok with the end result - people won't be driven while playing something they don't like.

-IMAGE - same as songwriting, you can fight about it alot and have many different opinions, as long as eventually everyone can live with the end results it's fine in my book.


And one last thing... personally I was about a year ago in a band that considered me too "noob" to have an opinion - quitting that band was probably the best move I did in my musical career. Don't be with people who don't respect you.
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Old 05-12-2014, 04:34 PM   #3
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Everything Omnius said. It's all about having fun and doing what you love and if it's not there, you'll know it. It's just hard accepting it sometimes.
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Old 05-13-2014, 09:25 AM   #4
Michele_R
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Thanks for your answers; I agree with all you have said.

Hardlycore, you are right, I noticed I was not enjoying the band anymore and it was more of a source of disappointment than joy.

Quote:
-MONEY - Being paid is awsome, but (for my band at least) it's not what we're here for. Discuss it with your bandmates up front - you shouldn't take it for granted.


Well, I love playing, but I mean, I'm ok with playing for free (I mean, I'm not expecting to make a living out of it; also because I'm far from being good enought to pretend it) if I have a considerable crowd attending the concert; but would it be acceptable for you to play for free in a "pub" that did almost no advertising; there are like 4 people attending the gig; and in the end you still have to face the costs (like fuel to get to the gig) by yourself?

Maybe, if it wasn't a tribute band, I'd see it as: "well, at least I promoted our songs to 4 people, if even only one checks out our FB page/youtube channel/talks about us to friends; than I reached my goal" or "shit happens"; but since we were just performing already famous music, I'd like to avoid playing in empty halls and to be also paying for it

Last edited by Michele_R : 05-13-2014 at 09:28 AM.
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Old 05-13-2014, 12:16 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Michele_R
Thanks for your answers; I agree with all you have said.

Hardlycore, you are right, I noticed I was not enjoying the band anymore and it was more of a source of disappointment than joy.



Well, I love playing, but I mean, I'm ok with playing for free (I mean, I'm not expecting to make a living out of it; also because I'm far from being good enought to pretend it) if I have a considerable crowd attending the concert; but would it be acceptable for you to play for free in a "pub" that did almost no advertising; there are like 4 people attending the gig; and in the end you still have to face the costs (like fuel to get to the gig) by yourself?

Maybe, if it wasn't a tribute band, I'd see it as: "well, at least I promoted our songs to 4 people, if even only one checks out our FB page/youtube channel/talks about us to friends; than I reached my goal" or "shit happens"; but since we were just performing already famous music, I'd like to avoid playing in empty halls and to be also paying for it


Never play for free unless it's a benefit or you're opening for someone at a shitty pub just to get some basic starting out practice. Venues will automatically take you more seriously and treat you better if you act professional - professionals deal with money and agree on amounts up front. It's an odd thing, people value things they pay for, not things they get for free. If as a band you present yourself as a band that doesn't need to get paid, the venues won't take you seriously and you'll actually be shooting yourself in the foot.

If you so much as flinch with pub owners you will continuously get screwed. This is one of the most difficult things for young bands to understand.
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Old 05-14-2014, 04:38 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Michele_R
Thanks for your answers; I agree with all you have said.

Hardlycore, you are right, I noticed I was not enjoying the band anymore and it was more of a source of disappointment than joy.



Well, I love playing, but I mean, I'm ok with playing for free (I mean, I'm not expecting to make a living out of it; also because I'm far from being good enought to pretend it) if I have a considerable crowd attending the concert; but would it be acceptable for you to play for free in a "pub" that did almost no advertising; there are like 4 people attending the gig; and in the end you still have to face the costs (like fuel to get to the gig) by yourself?

Maybe, if it wasn't a tribute band, I'd see it as: "well, at least I promoted our songs to 4 people, if even only one checks out our FB page/youtube channel/talks about us to friends; than I reached my goal" or "shit happens"; but since we were just performing already famous music, I'd like to avoid playing in empty halls and to be also paying for it



Basic Rules....

coverband/tributeband = get paid
original Music band= get famous...then get paid

donīt get me wrong but if your not making Money as a tributeband...your doing something wrong or you live in a Town with population 500 that already have 4 tribute bands.
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Old 05-14-2014, 01:43 PM   #7
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Thanks, I completely agree with you!

As soon as I'll have another band, I'll hopefully know how to get things to work better!
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Old 06-19-2014, 08:03 PM   #8
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The answers to your questions are going to vary from person to person - even among those who are really passionate about music.

The answers I give now would be a whole lot different than the answers I would have given when I was 20. My life has changed a lot.

It depends on who you are and where you are.

CT
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Old 06-19-2014, 08:20 PM   #9
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-MONEY

20- year-old me: F**k yeah. Play anywhere any time. Anything could lead to opportunity. Don't play the short game, play the long one.

Me now: I enjoy playing, but I have a zillion other things I probably should be doing. I hate humping gear. I'll play a free show for a good cause from time to time, but otherwise, I'm not showing up for less than about $75 in my own pocket at the end of the night. Even then, that's only about $15/hr.


-LEADERSHIP/RELATIONSHIP

Being friends is a great ideal, but as long as everyone can get along and work together productively... we're all good.


-CRITICISM/COMMUNICATION

Be respectful, but be honest. Don't bullsh!t me or anyone else in the band. Be open and transparent. Don't play he said/she said like a teenaged girl.

-ORGANIZATION (meant as setting goals, if you are a cover band, how often you add new songs; how often you go to reharshals etc.)

20-year-old me: Don't waste your time on anything less than 2x per week, at at least 3hrs per session. Goals are important. You don't get signed if that's not your goal.

Me now: Add new songs when the existing ones are tight. We learned about 60 songs last year. Short term goals give you something to work for, but the long term goal is to simply have fun. Rehearsing once a week for three hours should be plenty if people are even half-assed capable and do their homework.


-MUSIC (style of music you play/musical style agreement when composing)

20-year-old me: Metal! I don't care who writes it as long as I can crank up and wail.

Me now: Everything from Etta James to RATM, from Gretchen Wilson to P!nk. If it gets the crowd up and dancing and having fun and singing along, that's way more gratifying than doing my best Angus Young meets Yngwie Malmsteen schtick in front of about 20 people who mostly don't care that much.


-IMAGE (maybe this is the most overlooked...with image I mean both the "artistical" side of the band -as logo, stage show, costumes if any- and the pubblic relation side -what style do band members use when comunicating via social networks etc.)

20-year-old me: It has to be right. Calculated. Slick. Professional. You can't compete with Motley Crue and Ratt and Extreme if you look like you just got off the local suburban bus route. Social networking in 1990 was writing letters.

Me now: comfortable. casual. don't look like a prima-donna d!ckhead. be friendly and not arrogant and unapproachable. If you can make friends with a few people in the crowd, they'll come back and see your next show.

Also, how do you look at the band? I mean, do you see it like something just for fun or something that needs a solid structure that makes stuff work at their best?

20-year-old me: Band is like your job. You have a goal to get signed, and you take it seriously. It takes priority over nearly anything except school.

Me now: As much as I love it, real life comes first. Work, family (kids), etc. It needs a solid enough structure to make it work, and people need to commit to it still, but nobody is going to pay their rent or put food on the table with it.

The irony here is that I am making more money playing in a band now, than I did in my twenties. Go figure. (although in my 30's, I played to some pretty good crowds at some pretty decent venues.... but still for mostly crappy money)

CT
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Quote:
Originally Posted by firehawk
Chris is the king of relating music things to other objects in real life.
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