Hey guys.

Here's the deal, I'd like to start a band, and I was wondering your opinions on something. Do you guys think a band that doesn't play any covers, just the bands' own music, will do worse/have a worse time/play worse music than one who instead starts out only playing a lot of music?

Thanks very much,
Last edited by Eddie4President at Dec 23, 2009,
I don't think so, it's good that you want to start out making your own stuff, that way you gain experience way faster.
i tried like hell to get my old band to do at least one cover
ill tell you this theres a ...^...
never went anywhere

but if theres a big flow of original material coming in no way push it aside in order to get covers in
No, I don't think so, but it will take a lot more time to bring any results to the light of day.
I think that if you gig without any covers, it depends on where you play, but it could hurt you some. Working in a few well-known songs that the crowd likes and are similar to what you play would help get the crowd on your side. And at least starting out, playing covers just for practice can help you guys get your sound together, and help you guys get used to playing in a band.
Covers make it easier to get places to act (like bars, etc) because the owner already has an idea of what type of songs he wants to be played.
you should start with some covers (of classics basically) and then insert some fresh material in the progression.
I think it is the best start.
dude i say go for it,
i try keep the covers that we know as a band to a minimum and even then we use them just for like warm ups and for a bit of fun as an encore. from my own experience we got a lot of exposure out on the scene where im at just because we dont do the cover thing, we go out there and play our won stuff and thats lead to us being on some underground radio stations and weve had like a 6 month stretch in a studio (still going) for free just because the guy who owns the place reckons we will make it over the other guys out here.
so once again go for it dude
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Thanks very much guys, I definitely will take your ideas into account. And just in case it matters, the stuff I'm writing is mainly thrash metal, a bit like Kreator actually Sie sind ein sehr gutes Band.

But yeah, I have no problem song writing, I've been working on one or two every 2 weeks, so that's not a problem, and that's also one of the reasons I'm not such a big fan of cover songs.
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its good to have one or two covers to start out but a majority should be your own material. Its worked so far with my band
I think starting out with covers is good for two things

1. If you don't know the bandmembers very well or haven't played with them before, it gets the band chemisrty going and helps you work as a band better

2. It makes it easier to get gigs if that's what you're looking to do
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ive never heard a band perform a cover so yh[/QUOT

How many bands have you seen? Not many for sure....
I personally think that a cover or two will help you to start becoming tight with your new members, as you will be playing full songs from the start rather than just bits that will later be put together.

However, its definately not a bad thing to start writing straight away, at least then you will know whether or not it will work. In my last band, we played covers for a few months and it went well, but it fell apart when it came to writing originals.

If you think you'll be OK playing originals from the start, go for it
if your no having any trouble writing your own stuff dont bother with covers, but i found that with my band we played covers for what seemed like ages then moved onto our own stuff, but during the time we played cover we focused on being really tight with one another instead of worrying about writting stuff and now that were doing our own thing we only need to worry bout the song and not how we should sound with one another, if that makes sense.
The first few practices are going to be weird unless someone has some full songs that already have been written. I find covers useful when your just starting a band, they're generally fairly easy songs that the whole band can learn before they get to the first practice. Then you go right into playing with each other and getting tighter as a group. Then once you've played together for a couple weeks, and know that this band is something you want to pursue now then start writing original material. Because who knows, you may work so hard on these songs and then once you start playing together realize you don't like the group or something.
i think it's nice to have a cover or two, just to kind of get people interested in your shows. but overall it'll probably be fine
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2. It makes it easier to get gigs if that's what you're looking to do

you're giving a simple answer to a complex issue. whether playing covers is a help or a hindrance depends on where you are, what you're playing and what your aims are. to say that it makes it easier to get gigs isn't really accurate. it is a disadvantage for some gigs. i have booked bands. i wouldn't book bands that play covers, because the people who go to the gigs i've booked aren't interested in that.
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I much prefer covers as a band to get out there... 1. It helps broaden yourself as a musician and 2. MOST and I mean that.. MOST *ones in cities are a minority compared to rest of the world* want stuff the crowd knows... ITs always fine to throw an original in here or there but ya. You won't make 120 dollars (a person) a night right away doing originals.
Even if you don't plan on performing them, I'd suggest learning one or two covers to start, just to jam and get a feel for your bandmates' styles and whatnot.
No, have 3-5 cover songs. Even if you don't have them in your set list, it can inspire you guys and also when you guys are having a hard practice it can be fun to break out a cover song and just jam to it.
I don't see why everyone is always like, "Play covers first, it helps you build chemistry as a band!". That's a load of crap. Practice playing your own songs, that's what matters in the long run. Covers can be good for gigs though. People like to hear songs they know.
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Around here, when it comes to get gigs, venues will cater to crowds who expect either original music or covers.

So, if you are playing at a 'covers' venue, and you trot out some originals, the people there will give you polite applause, but really won't give half a crap about what you're doing. If you're playing at an 'originals' venue and trot out one or two covers.... fine. More than that, and the audience - and the owner - will be like, WTF?

If you want to do originals, go for it. No real need to do any covers. My last band was all original, and we never had any problems getting gigs. We learned a couple of covers along the way, but they were for special occasions (benefit shows and such) that we did for kicks. They were never really part of our set.

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My band doesn't play any covers. If people aren't reacting well to originals, what's going to make everyone start rocking out over a cover? Also, a rule that I like to keep in the back of my head, is that if you cover a band that people in the crowd happen to hate, they're probably going to hate you too.
If your just starting a band, then do a few covers to get the ball rolling. Once you have them tight, show them your stockpiled idea's. Thats what went down with my band. Now we do a few covers and a bunch of our originals. And I do say it was worth it(and fun) to do the covers.
play covers. songs that r popular. becasue no one wants to sit around and listen to a bunch of songs they have never heard before, especially if ur just starting out. its good to start out with cover songs
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I don't see why everyone is always like, "Play covers first, it helps you build chemistry as a band!". That's a load of crap. Practice playing your own songs, that's what matters in the long run. Covers can be good for gigs though. People like to hear songs they know.

And if you don't have any of "your own songs?" I've been in several bands and never once have we started playing a song that we haven't written yet. We usually pick a song that everyone knows and go off on that for a little while. You do need to build chemistry and when you're playing something that's already written, you can do that while keeping egos in check.
We have 6 [almost 7] original songs and crowds love us. We get a LOT of response. =]
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