Im in a band and i am lead guitarist. the band isnt really anything yet we just play covers in the drummers garage. we want to play a talent show coming up though and we need a lot of work to be done until we are ready to do that. ive been telling my drummer that we need to play the songs just by ourself without the music backing us up and we have to fix the problem spots but he finds this boring and gets mad when i suggest it. do you guys have any advice on how i might convince him or advice on how your band practices to get better
Well me and my band have a pretty hectic time trying to learn songs with time to do it in or not.
If we're not actually practicing then we're arguing over what to actually play and who plays what but I can don't really understand your dilemma that much.

Do you mean the music backing you up as in the music is actually playing along with you guys or does he have some sheet music backing him or something?
Everynow and then we use the music on the background for new songs. But Usually the Lead guitarist and I sit down and learn the song, we bring it back to the rest of the band, and the drummer fills in his own way, and the bass player follows me. That's just covers though.
Quote by paranoideyes
introduce her to the back of your hand.
Quote by saphrax
Remember kids.
Backhand = Discipline
Palm hand = Abuse

That's stupid to play with song in the back.
Just play it by yourselves.
Me and my band have a line-up and we go thru it over and over again.
It might get boring after a while so you have to joke a lot
But of course we play without any music backing us up cause they're all originals :P
1. You're surfing the internet.
2. You're browsing through the UG forums.
3. You're reading now.
5. You didn't notice that there was no #4.
6. You just checked it.
7. Now you're having a lil smile.

Quote by hawk_kst
You Sir, have the best signature like ever!
Quote by salamander121

Do you mean the music backing you up as in the music is actually playing along with you guys or does he have some sheet music backing him or something?

Sorry i didnt really explain that much we put the music on an ipod and play it through an amp while we play over it which i dont really like doing because you end up missing where you went wrong but he thinks its more fun that way
i want to actually practice
Lol good choice (im lead guitarist as well lol) and you seem to have the right idea, everyone starts on covers, but you really have to persuade them to play without backing tracks, otherwise your only guna get used to that, you need to learn a few songs without the backing tracks otherwise your not guna learn to play as a band.. just play over a song, say you got a gig? your not guna be able have a backing track to help you there lol, as soon as you feel good enough as a band, try to start writing your own stuff, even if its absolutely **** still play it in practice to learn how each other plays and become more natural playing together as a band, ive been in a band for 2 years now and its coming along quite well for us lol.
thanks guys so far ive been thinking of telling him that if we keep doing it the way we are then its gonna end up sounding like **** but if we actually practice and do the boring stuff then itll all pay off and be fun once we finally do get it
i only play with the songs when i play alone, we never played with a song in the background with my band. And why does he think its boring if you play it by yourself? Do you bay any chance do not have a vocalist? It could also be that he plays like crap and wants to cover it up by playing with a song. Anyway, tell him that you should practice on your own, and if you dont you will sound like crap on stage. And practicing alone is probly more fun that with a backing track, you can all kinds of licks and stuff to the song, and make up your own solos.
Joža je kul. On ma sirove z dodatki pa hambije.
you really should practice without the songs playing otherwise people can improvise sections and jsut wait for the song to finish playing that section meaning you dont actually know the song
he should be learning covers in his own time as band practices is where the band plays the songs as a whole and things are corrected rather than learnt
its also not good practice for when your playing originals as theres gunna be no track to play those over
go to a practice studio
where you can't do that and play the covers. if they sound crap then youve jsut proved to him that playing over the songs will never get them as good as they should be
If you're only playing covers, the important thing is that everyone MUST do their homework. Practice time is practice time, not 'learn the freaking song part by part' time. Everyone should know the song inside and out by the time you guys play it as a group for the first time.
It doesn't hurt to have the song on hand for reference, but there is no need to be playing along with it. That will hurt you, as when the time comes to play by yourselves, odds are you'll all be lost without it.
If at some point you plan on writing originals, here is an example of how my band practices work. It's our routine, so you don't have to copy it, but I find it works great for us:

Everyone plugs in. We play through some older songs we all know. Once we go through about 8-9 of them, we'll start working on some newer songs. If the song is almost done, we'll get down to the nitty-gritty. "When we hit the second chorus, I think there should be a one beat pause, and then after that cymbal crash on the 2, we all come in again." Things like that. If the song is new, we'll work on the basic parts and structure. "During the bridge, try to come up with a bass riff in the higher register to compensate for the low end on the guitars there. Also, we need to re-write the chorus, it doesn't have enough impact" Things like that.
It can be boring, since we tend to play a part repeatedly until it's perfect while writing. So we jam a bit to ease the tension, play some stupid covers (tonight I started playing the intro to Pour Some Sugar on Me, and we ****ed around on that for a bit. We were all laughing by the end, as none of us could handle the harmonies on the chorus. We also played an impromptu punk rock version of 'Hero' by Enrique Iglesias). If you're taking the band seriously, it can't always be fun and games. Getting songs down perfectly is hard work, but you need to be patient to keep the creativity going.
Also, in recent weeks, we've started our practices by mixing some songs we recorded for an hour or two. We're lucky to have a decent recording set up, so we take advantage of that.

Anyway, good luck. The important thing is to establish a routine and maintain a strong work ethic. The most important question when finding band members (and it's a question I find many people around this board are afraid to ask) is "Are my band members capable and willing to put in a hard days work for this band?"
Generally, my band doesnt play covers. Now and then we will **** around with them because the process of writing and practising can get tedious. I am the guitarist, and usually the "lead" songwriter. The band has found that its easier to write if we are all seperate. I'll go to my own studio at home plug into my gear and mic up the amps and start jamming away. When i come up with a riff, or some nice progressions that sound great i record them and i'll send the recorded clips to the other guys to see what they think is yay and nay. If everything comes back yay, i write the rest of the guitar parts and formulate the rough sketch of the song and record it all for the basic demo. Send it out again, the bass player writes his parts, the drummer writes his parts. Then we'll get together and everyone just starts jamming and the song is pretty much done, we just work on timing and structuring and tweak it so that it sounds really good. Its by far my favorite practising process because we are all very busy, so when we get time to practise, it has to be straight down to business. We are fortunate to have access to recording gear so that makes this method possible.

As you can see from this thread, there are lots of ways to practise, and none of them are really wrong. For me, I only play along to songs when im playing alone and I see how this would interfere in a band setting. I would just tell your drummer as everyone else has said, that your never going to progress as a band if you keep jamming to recorded tracks. Sure i will admit i do enjoy that, but not in a band setting. If he disagrees, then it seems to me hes just in it for a laugh and to have a bit of fun, and theres nothing wrong with that, but everyone knows if your serious about music, its not always fun and games. Best of Luck.

Epiphone Les Paul Standard
Seymour Duncan Pickups
Washburn WR120 Rocker Series
Marshall DSL50
Marshall 1960 Lead Cab
Boss GT8
Boss Super Over Drive
Boss Super Chorus
Last edited by FarFromDead at Mar 29, 2009,
If we are learning a new song we will sit down and listen to it a few times with our guitars unplugged to get the feel for it then go from there