#1
Hey guys. I really need some help here. I'm in a band with two guys and we have a lot decent amount of original music written but I'm really not that busy of a guy (so I listen to TONS of records everyday) and by the time they come over to jam out (after they are out of work and what not) I always wanna learn one or two new covers with them but THEY are NEVER willing to do it..it's really annoying I think. Covers are pretty vital I think to bcoming a wellrounded musician you know. .. it's really good to be able to impress people, wouldn't you say?

I was wondering if you guys could help me persuade them, please. Just one or two covers a day is all I'm asking and then I'll play whatever originals they want.. Also, keep this in mind, I have written 3/4 of the originals. Thanks. Take it w/ ease.
The times they are a changin'.....
#2
I didn't really understand if you're talking about learning two covers then playing them each day, or if you were saying they should learn two new covers each day. Either way, the former is completely reasonable, two covers isn't a lot. The latter, on the other hand, is quite a bit to ask of anyone, let alone two people who work all day.

Just tell them that you know they're busy, you know they want to play originals, but if you ever play live, people will want to hear covers. It's as simple as that. Unless you're the next Zeppelin, chances are people aren't too interested in your originals. Covers are a good way to get noticed, get people to a gig, etc.
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#3
Let them choose a cover each in addition to yours. They'll get their input, and the band will get more songs.
And no, Guitar Hero will not help. Even on expert. Really.
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#4
If you are asking for them to learn one or two new covers everyday I think that is an unreasonable amount of work. It is better to play fewer songs really well than to play several songs mediocrely.

As for encouraging them to play covers, remind them that it will help audience respond because the audience likes being able to recognize songs. Try picking covers that all three of you like so everyone will look forward to playing the songs. Finally, try doing your own renditions of the covers. This way you will be able to put more of your mark on the song and your band can look forward to still being creative rather than a jukebox.
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#5
In reality, when it comes to gigging, the venue/promoter'booker will want to know if you are a cover band or an original band. If you tell them "both" they won't know what to do with you.

Some audiences want to get drunk and dance to songs they know. Other audiences want to go out and be the radar that their friends look to for new music. Bands are booked according to audience expectations.

So.... if I was booking a club and asked you, "Do you do covers or originals?" what would you tell me?

The answer to your dilemma may well lie in your answer.

Now, I'm not suggesting that an original band can't do covers. Just that, as an original band, that you should be doing *nearly* all originals. In our three years or so of gigging, we played two covers for ONE gig at a Queen tribute night, and three covers for a thing we did just for kicks at a '70's tribute night. We have one other cover that we bounced around the possibility of playing at the odd gig, but never did. So, that's six covers, played over two gigs in three years. But as an original band, if you got up and played ten songs and two of them were covers kind of thing, you'd be okay.

CT
Could I get some more talent in the monitors, please?

I know it sounds crazy, but try to learn to inhale your voice. www.thebelcantotechnique.com

Chris is the king of relating music things to other objects in real life.
Last edited by axemanchris at Feb 21, 2009,
#6
Wow that's insane Axemanchris. Did you have trouble getting gigs/fanbase at the start?
And no, Guitar Hero will not help. Even on expert. Really.
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#7
Getting a fan base is always a challenge. Getting gigs was easy - we just targeted places that catered to original bands.

Now, I am oversimplifying it a bit.... we're all pretty experienced players, and we know the business end of things and how to work it. We also pretty much came onto the scene having our album recorded and nearly ready for release. We had radio-ready product, and started working campus and print media in the area. We came across totally professionally, and that was the main ingredient in allowing us to get gigs pretty much right off. Mind you, like everyone else, we did a couple of those "new music night" things with six bands in one night kind of thing.

Another thing we did, and this was the product of all those things above, is we targeted festivals. We submitted for those and got picked. For festivals, you just show up and play... someone else does all the promotion, and by virtue of it being a festival, there is always an audience there. It's an awesome deal for a band that has a pretty mainstream sound.

We also networked with other original bands - ideally as close to our mainstream genre as we could find and did some shows with them. For one, we organized the whole thing and put it on at a very nice concert theatre with pro sound and lights and stuff. The media was happy to cover it.

CT
Could I get some more talent in the monitors, please?

I know it sounds crazy, but try to learn to inhale your voice. www.thebelcantotechnique.com

Chris is the king of relating music things to other objects in real life.
#8
two covers a day? i'm sided with the "bad guys", or as some of you like to call them, homoes.
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Why don't you just all jam and see what comes out

That wat she said!!!!!!!!!!!

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#9
By day I mean every jam session, which is all random. But, I appreciate the input guys.
The times they are a changin'.....