#1
So my band has been practicing for about a month now as a wole, the singer and I a little longer. We have 6 songs, 5 we really like. To keep it simple: heres the issue

We are a simple band in terms of song difficulty and complexity. We aren't doing 6 string sweeps. We're doing cover songs like No donnie, these men are nihilist by Evergreen Terrace. We have 1 song I'd consider medium difficulty.

That being said, I'd like to perfect the songs we have now, and it shouldn't take too long, since I've got these songs down, my singer has them, and my drummer is a almost a pro. The bassist, on the other hand, is freaking out and thinks we need to slow down, and practice AT LEAST two months before we do a show.

I agree to a certain extent.

We practice Mondays and Wednesday 2 hours a day. We SHOULD be able to perfect a song like No Donnie in 1 session, right? Especially because we've already played it quite a few times together. How long should we be spending on a song like this?

Me and the singer think we should be playing shows by Mid November, the drummer thinks we'll be ready by then too. We would NEVER play a show if we clearly aren't ready. But the bassist, on the other hand, thinks we're moving way too fast, and isn't happy about it. Thinks we shouldn't even play until December, shouldn't record anything, and that we're not even close to decent.

I guess my issue is a conflict of interest. I see no reason why we can't be ready to go by November if everyone is excited and on point. I also think if we're spending long days and hours on a song like No Donnie, then the band is doing something wrong.

At what point is a band moving too fast?

So UG, how long before your band played their first show? How many new songs were you pumping out?


Thanks for the input, hope I made the situation clear enough
#2
For experienced, dedicated musicians, a cover band would be gigging within a month and a half. You guys don't sound like that.

Generally the first aim with any sort of band is to aim for certain length set-lists. These are 30 mins, then 1 hr, or 6 and 12 songs in respective order. For a working cover band the setlists are heavily inflated, and you'd want at least 2hrs before getting paid work. Most cover bands will have around 4 hours of music under their belt.

For a beginner cover band such as yourselves, I would expect gigging a half hour set to be happening 2-3 months after forming if you're practicing as much as you can. It's plain to see you're inexperienced, because you claim the song is down because you know your part. This is simply not the case - the song has to be together with the entire band. You're also gauging how hard a song is by the techniques employed on the guitar. Not so again - it's related to the structure and dynamics of the song, and whether your band can execute it.

You know you're ready to gig when you don't have to think about the songs that you're playing, even a little bored of them because you've played them so much. At this point you do a gig, the audience reacts positively and you start enjoying your songs again.

If you're not sure, bring a video camera along to your next practice and go through the songs you think you have down. Now watch the video back and try to listen to the band as a whole. Hopefully you can determine whether it sounds good or not.
And no, Guitar Hero will not help. Even on expert. Really.
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#3
i agree with Alan.

after reading your OP, i thought to myself, either your bassist is the clear cut weak link, or he's the only one with any real sense to hear what's going on around him... or maybe he's a wussy cautionary voice (and anyone who's seen Final Destination knows what those are good for, right?)

kidding, kidding, but seriously, if he's so adamant against gigging when everyone else is on board, try to see things from his perspective. where you might think the song's done because you and your singer know your parts, he might be listening to everyone playing at a different tempo! (or something).
#4
Thanks for the advice, certainly helps a lot. I just got a voice recorder and will s tart recording our practices to hopefully see what our bassist is seeing. We are huge on tempo and playing without mistakes, and we are confident already in 3 of our songs, and have received good feedback from the people who run the music program at the place we practice at. It's just our bassist thinks we are moving to fast, and it raised the question for all of us - are we? Or is she worrying too much instead of having fun?

And when I mean gigging I don't want to play local bars and bigger shows right off the bat, we can leave those shows for when 2010 kicks in. Prior to that, I want to build up some respect and feedback by playing birthday parties, school shows, whatever it may be.

Our goal is to do that by the middle/end of the next month, if we are ready of course. Is it better to try and meet these goals, or is it better to take things one day at a time THEN come next month, see where we are?
#5
If you're keen to play, you're keen to play. Take advantage of it, there's no such thing as moving to fast, if guys think it's tight go for it
#6
Quote by Supafly1824
Our goal is to do that by the middle/end of the next month, if we are ready of course. Is it better to try and meet these goals, or is it better to take things one day at a time THEN come next month, see where we are?


If you're asking whether you should book gigs now and hope for the best, the answer is that it's not a good idea. Wait till the entire band is comfortable with your songs then book the gigs.
And no, Guitar Hero will not help. Even on expert. Really.
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#7
Definitely know your material until you are sick of it and can dodge distractions without messing up seriously. Don't fall into the trap of being able to play songs adequately and say "that's enough, we know that one now, let's try something new".

With that being said, ya gotta bust your cherry sometime. If your bassist is worried about lifelong emotional wrist-slitting trauma from a bad performance, then try to get some very softball gigs as confidence builders. A good way is to invite some close friends over to watch your practice session. It provides some performance pressure that can help expose weak spots in your act, but won't put you in an environment where you'll get crocked in the skull by a beer bottle from an angry audience member.

Throw a small party and play. If anyone messes up badly, then they can always blame it on "getting too wasted".
#8
Quote by cheapr2keepr
Throw a small party and play. If anyone messes up badly, then they can always blame it on "getting too wasted".


This. I did this with my band, and it REALLY helps point out the weak points in your set, and what you should work on.
#9
I reckon it hinges almost entirely on how good you are as individual musicians.

A band formed of experienced, technically advanced musicians could throw together a 90-minute covers set inside two weeks; a band of beginner-level 15yr-old punks probably aren't going to sound great no matter how much they rehearse.
#10
You can never have a set too together. There's nothing worse than getting on stage and saying "ok what song do you guys wanna do first" or getting to the bridge of a song and completely losing your sync.

What we do is try to run through our whole set without talking to eachother or stopping in between at all (at practice). And if we can do that flawlessly, then we're pretty much ready
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