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Bostonrocks
UG God
Join date: Nov 2007
7,064 IQ
#1
So, this is the touring and gigging thread! if any of you have questions or just want some clear cut info ask in here and read through the plethora all the gigging guys have!!! Thanks to Denied, and Colin617 for letting me use their stuff. This was Denied's idea for the most part, a huge thanks to him also! Have fun and lets be helpful!!!


So, after a few months (almost 8) of touring and playing shows 2 weeks out of every month (or more) I’ve compiled a list of things and stories that I feel would be of great help to many UG’ers!
So, after these months I’ve definitely found these things helpful.

Brett’s Top 10:

1. Gaffer Tape: (or duct tape, either will work, but gaffer tape is better) Ok, the reason you need this, is at the VERY least it will be nice to tape down your cables. I was on the main stage of a medium sized festival and tripped over a mic cable while walking up to the front for a solo…how do you think that feels?.....GET TAPE.


2. Tool Kit: this may seem obvious, but you’d be surprised at how many bands or guitar players I’ve run across who don’t have a tool kit with allen wrenches, screwdrivers soldering irons etc. I recommend a tackle box (yes, like for fishing) if you’re on a budget, it has tons of nice little places for you to put things. I typically keep both a metric and standard Allen Wrench set in mine along with extra 12ax7s, a assortment of Screwdrivers (both Flathead and Phillips) my Ebow, two extension cords, a power strip and splitters for both, there is a bunch more stuff too, just do what fits you.


3. KISS (Keep It Simple Stupid): LIVE BY THIS. Don’t over complicate ANYTHING if you don’t have to. Don’t run 4 delays 2 MIDI controllers a overdrive and a tremolo if you don’t absolutely have to. Less is just better in most cases, less = less noise/buzz less = less things to go wrong .


4. PedalBoard: You definitely want one whether it be homemade or whatever, just have one, it makes setup simple and easy and protects your pedals.

5. Pedals: Pedals are HUGE part of some peoples tone, but if you can get away with a overdrive, tuner and one or two effects DO IT. I left for tour on a Friday and by Monday I had brought my board from 2 OD’s, Delay, Tuner, Wah and Volume pedal to one OD and a tuner, and occasionally I’d stick the delay in. there is just a lot more to go wrong with a bunch of pedals, not that you can’t or shouldn’t . It’s just the fact that less is usually more. Also pedal power is a MUST. 9v’s WILL fail on you in the middle of the show and it SUCKS.


6. Surge protector/voltage regulator: these things are like a hundred bucks and will protect you from dirty power and voltage spiked, if you can afford it do it. If you MUST a power strip will work though.

7. Backups for EVERYTHING:. Whether it be a squire and a bugera or a 3k Gibson and a Bad Cat a back up for your guitar and amp is a MUST. Just do it. Cables, and batteries are the big ones in my opinion, cables just go out sometimes, and batteries are ALWAYS good to have. Whether its for your guitar or pedals or whatever, just have them.

8. Strap Locks: This has been a LIFE (guitar) SAVER. There is many a time where I’ve been EXTEREMLY happy I’ve had strap locks on my guitars. I really, really recommend getting them even if you’re NOT touring/giggin

9.Set up your Guitar: If you don’t set up your guitars yourself (and even if you do) have it professionally set up. It’ll last about a month and is totally worth it. You’ll play better and feel better about playing with it.

10. Hardcases: I know this one probably seems like a “duh” moment, but hardcases for as much as you can afford (amps, guitars, pedals) is huge, too many times I’ve had stuff fall on my pedals or something like that and just been like. “ OMGz0rz I’m happy I have HSC’s”

11: Don't Gig in New Jersey or the ghetto of Lubbock Texas

I know many of these seem obvious, but I’ve seen many bands not have these very simple things, what works for me may not work exactly the same for you, but it’s the same concept, I really suggest you at least try these things out if you’re a gigging musican.

Also, here is a freebie. One of the things I’ve really found is having a dummy cab is nice if you can. Run your real cab facing backwards or in another room (so you can turn it up) and have your dummy cab on stage for the looks. You’ll have better tone and your soundguy will be way happier. One more thing, is if you can afford it, get a ribbon mic (I love the fathead II) and double mic your cabs (57 and 609’s work really well with the fathead) and you’re tone will cover a LOT more ground if you’re the only guitar player.

Tips on Tone for the Live player:
1. Don’t scoop mids…like…ever. It’s a big no no and you will be LOST in the mix
2. If you can, walk out in to the room when you’re playing for soundcheck, hear what your tone sounds like in the mix it’ll be a huge help
3. Brighter is better than darker most of the time.
4. Don’t use too much gain, it’ll only muddy up your mix, the less you can use the better!
5. Fuzz pedals are cool….for the studio. (sometimes usable, but normally not)
6. PICKUPS, make sure you have goodish pickups, they make the world of difference.
7. Know how to mic your amp or at least vaguely what you’re doing at the very least, mic position is EVERYTHING live. An inch the wrong way is the difference between great tone and terrible tone.
8. Don’t make the soundguy mad….ever.
9. Pedals are cool, don’t overdo it.
10. Setting up your guitar usually makes it sound much better, do it before every tour and make adjustments as necessary
11. If you have an EQ try boosting mid frequencies (330 is the “body” of an electric guitar, 450-900 is the “honkeyness” use this for cutting through and 1k and up is where you get into treble and presence frequencies, use these to brighten up your tone to cut a little better.
12. I really, really suggest using delays or a stereo setup if you are the only player. You want to create a “big” sound to fill up your place in a mix.
13. As I said earlier, dual micing things can make a world of difference
14. Lead sounds really do well with short delays (330ms and under) to phatten them up, boost the mids (frequencies talked about earlier) to cut and set the presence and treble frequencies as desired (higher for a brighter more, piercing tone and lower for a more “deadend” or dark tone)
15. If there is more than one player in your band don’t overplay anything, you’ll make a mess which leads to my next point
16. If there is more than one player in your band HAVE CONTRASTING TONES. If you have a band and you’re both running Superlead Plexi’s you’ll mush together and it’ll sound like a mess. The Darkness is a great example of using different amps, Justin Hawkins uses Mesa’s and Dan Hawkins uses Superleads and they sound firkin AH-MAZING.
17. Rooms are not created equal…your settings are not going to work in every single room.
18. TUBES MAKE THE DIFFERENCE. I’m gonna be honest, I’ve never heard a truly “great” tone live with a SS, whether that be a vetta a MG or a SS140, none of them cut (especially the Line6’s) quite like a tube amp.
19. As with setting up guitars, you also should have your amps “set up” ie. Biased, re-tubed etc.
20. Have fun guys, people hear it when you’re not having a good time


I think that’s it for now hopefully this is of some big help do people!
Quote by gregs1020
Brett has been saving for a splawn for 4 years
countries have been toppled in the time it's taking, revolutions won got a black pres

yawn


Quote by bubb_tubbs
When he finally gets one it'll probably be televised like the Berlin Wall coming down.
The end of an era
Last edited by Bostonrocks at Jan 7, 2011,
Bostonrocks
UG God
Join date: Nov 2007
7,064 IQ
#2
Thank You Colin for letting us use this!

Quote by colin617
The last year has been a learning experience for me. I went from a hometown guitar hero to a full fledged professional musician. I toured nationally with one of the biggest names in modern country music. I've hung out with and talked music with some of the most gifted players in the world (coughBrentMasoncough). My band has its first LP coming out at the end of summer. I built my dream rig and then dismantled it. So, in light of all that, here is what I've learned about gear in the last year:

-If you ever plan on moving your amp/pedalboard, invest in flight cases.

-A Fender Hot Rod Deville can save your ass in a pinch (yes, there is a story behind this).

-No one can hear the difference between PCB and PTP wiring. (99% of the people that claim there is an audible difference are gear snobs that play contrived blues licks. Ironically, their superior hearing can't detect that their cliched blues bends aren't in tune)

-Boutique amps are 60% parts/labor/quality and 40% hype. However, that does not stop me from GASing for a Komet Concorde or Cameron modded Metropoulos 10 series. (No, my Splawn and Reeves are not for sale) *some boutique brands are quite affordable for what you get. Dr. Z and Valvetech come to mind.

-Figure out what style you want to play before investing in uber expensive boutique pedals. It will save you a ton of money and time. What you listen to and what you play don't have to be the same thing. Until you know what direction you want to go in musically, stick to the basics (Boss, MXR, EHX etc). As a bonus, you can learn a bit about gear by modding these pedals.

-Repeat after me: your pedalboard needs a buffer.

-Also, invest in some good patch cables.

-Turn the reverb down. It makes the sound muddy in a large room.

-Listen to your rig from an audience perspective. Then you will know what your tone actually sounds like.

-A rack setup is so damn versatile and sexy, but unless you are playing huge shows every other day, it is over-kill and a gigantic, expensive pain in the ass.

-Don't skimp on the speakers; however, buying the most expensive Celestions is not necessary. Eminence and Weber both make incredible speakers for fair prices.

-Cab construction matters, but modding a cheap one isn't that difficult.

-If you're going to buy a new production amp (Fender, Vox, Marshall), buy it used and take it to a tech. You will probably save close to 50% of the new price. Also, if you mod it, it can sound boutique for less than the price of a new model. (My Super Reverb RI, for example).

-Buying amps in some rare tolex/ covering is asinine if you plan on playing gigs. Yes, your amp is pretty, but it IS going to get dropped, scuffed, spilled on, ripped, etc. Then your aesthetic upcharge is null.

-Get to know a good tech. When you need work done, you will be glad you did.

-In the words of Frank Zappa, "Shut up and play yer guitar".

Colin
Quote by gregs1020
Brett has been saving for a splawn for 4 years
countries have been toppled in the time it's taking, revolutions won got a black pres

yawn


Quote by bubb_tubbs
When he finally gets one it'll probably be televised like the Berlin Wall coming down.
The end of an era
Last edited by Bostonrocks at Jan 7, 2011,
Bostonrocks
UG God
Join date: Nov 2007
7,064 IQ
#3
This is Denied's guide on Live sound.
Quote by denied
Brett and Colin have pretty much covered the main tips for live playing, so I’m going to give some input on the front of house guy perspective. The following are some lessons I’ve learned from 3 years working part time as a front of house guy. The information is given in good faith and based on those experiences, it may not apply to everyone.


Lesson 1: Scooping mids is just dumb thing to do.

I don't care if you need a "brutal sound" to play your tech death. I don't care you much you like the chugga chugga. It sounds bad at stage volumes, and you will not cut through the mix.

Scooped mids might sound good on your practice amp at bedroom levels, but are completely useless live. Guitars are mids focused instruments, and those are the bands that cut through the mix, Use them.



Example: One night while setting up, I saw that both guitar amps were set with mids pretty much at zero. Sure enough, the first solo comes up and I can't hear a single thing the guitarist is doing, no matter how hard he throws his hair around. I bring him all the way up in the mix and still nothing. Finally I get on his channel EQ and bring up 4 bands of mids. Check it out, I can finally hear him. This happens all the time.

Lesson 2: Use an amp that is suited for the tone you want. Pedals are not a substitute.

Too often do I see guitarists using amps that just aren’t right for the genres they’re playing or tone they’re looking for. We get threads all the time around the lines of “I’m looking for a pedal that will get me this tone out of this totally unsuitable amp.” The answer generally comes down to “buy a new amp.”

Example: One guitarist is using a Peavey Ultra. Decent sounding affordable all tube amp. The other, a Fender Deville and running a Line 6 Uber Metal pedal into it. As I soloed each channel out I burst out laughing. The Peavey was getting some pretty great sounding distortion. The Uber Metal on the other hand, was producing some of the most digital and sterile sounds I've heard since I last used a Spider II. The difference was so blatant that when I called a friend over and soloed the two channels out, he cracked up.



Yes there are decent dist pedals out there (think Okko Dominator and Toneczar Openhaus). But putting a junk pedal in front of a blues amp is not going to get you decent heavy tone, thats just not the way it works. Get an amp that works for what you want to play.

General mistakes everyone makes

Lesson 3: Know what you want in your monitors.

When a FOH guy asks you what you want in your monitors, and your response is a glazed face or "everything," the sound guy isn’t going to take you as seriously. A mix of “everything” gives you too much cymbal crash, bass, etc, and will result in lots of "Dude, I can’t hear anything." The front of house guy is there to make you sound good, make his job easier by knowing what you want. If you haven’t taken the time to think about it, you can always ask for a recommendation along the lines of “what kind of mix usually works well for this stage?”



Lesson 4: Bring everything.

This one has already been covered, but I’m emphasizing. You do not EVER want to be stuck in a situation where you need something you don’t have.

Do not assume that the venue has what you need. If you need to plug a violin pickup into a DI box, have that quarter inch cable ready and with you. If you know there is a backline drumkit, bring your pedals and cymbals so that you don't have to complain about how inferior the gear is. Stuff like spare cables, duct tape, 9v batteries, fuses, toolkit etc is basic. Have them with you so that little things don't hold up your show. I strongly recommend backup gear and roadcases.

Lesson 5:Show some confidence dammit.

When a band looks timid on stage, apologizes for the quality of every song, and stops playing because of a missed vocal line, the audience knows that you don't know what you're doing. And everyone in the venue takes you less seriously. That includes the sound tech, the promoter, possibly the owner. These are people you want on your side.

Act like you have some kind of handle over you’re playing. This is pretty basic, but the more energy you put into a song, and the less anxious you are about screwing up, the better you will look and sound. Most of the crowd has no clue you suck until you actually tell them so. And not more than 5% of the crowd at any given time knows that you screwed up unless you make it blatantly obvious by restarting.

That’s all for now, I hope it’s useful for a few people.


Here is some things that Darkwolf had to add!

Quote by darkwolf291
Good to see we finally got it done.

Some stuff I'd like to add. Call it an etiquette guide if you want.
1. DON'T ever act like an ass to anyone there unless they truly deserve it. Sound guy or not. If you act like an ass to the wrong person, you could get thrown out and barred from playing there. It's best to just bite your tongue and move on with it in most cases.

2. Always try and be quick when setting up and breaking down. There's usually bands coming on after you and it's common courtesy to always be as speedy as possible. Gives the other bands more time to set up, and they'll return the favor (at least in my experience).

3. NEVER think you have more experience and think you are better than another band.
Just because you've played more shows than someone else doesn't give you the right to talk down on them either. BE RESPECTFUL TO THE OTHER BANDS. If you are, they'll usually return the favor.

4. If at all possible, try and help the other bands unload their gear. It's a good way to make friends and they might even remember you, so mention your band name. If you're on tour with them, or play with them again, they'll probably help you unload next time.

5. Confidence is a good thing, but don't over-do it. You'll come across as cocky and arrogant.

Just my $0.02 on etiquette during a gig.
Quote by gregs1020
Brett has been saving for a splawn for 4 years
countries have been toppled in the time it's taking, revolutions won got a black pres

yawn


Quote by bubb_tubbs
When he finally gets one it'll probably be televised like the Berlin Wall coming down.
The end of an era
Last edited by Bostonrocks at Jan 7, 2011,
theogonia777
Miss Kristen
Join date: Jun 2009
2,237 IQ
#4
very good stuff so far. stickied. though the one thing you forgot to mention NOT to bring is your significant other.
Quote by Hal-Sephira
Shut the mother#%$& up, $^%got. You have a #$%^ing terrible muther&@$#ing taste in %#$@ing music, @&%$ing movies and %&$#ing video games. Every time I see you on the forums, you are always saying something overrated and some $@&#ing sh*t. You are just mother$^@%ing ignorant as a whole.

Get a #%$@ing life or you will get banned for life.


Quote by Arby911
Kristen is very open-minded; believes that everyone is entitled to her opinion...


Quote by NirvanaLuvr16
omg its better than i imagined... so dark and cozy and warm...


Read this please.
Bostonrocks
UG God
Join date: Nov 2007
7,064 IQ
#5
I've never had that problem so i can't speak from experience!
Quote by gregs1020
Brett has been saving for a splawn for 4 years
countries have been toppled in the time it's taking, revolutions won got a black pres

yawn


Quote by bubb_tubbs
When he finally gets one it'll probably be televised like the Berlin Wall coming down.
The end of an era
theogonia777
Miss Kristen
Join date: Jun 2009
2,237 IQ
#6
Quote by Bostonrocks
I've never had that problem so i can't speak from experience!


thankfully neither have i, but everyone who has done that has regretted it. like David St Hubbins from Spinal Tap.
Quote by Hal-Sephira
Shut the mother#%$& up, $^%got. You have a #$%^ing terrible muther&@$#ing taste in %#$@ing music, @&%$ing movies and %&$#ing video games. Every time I see you on the forums, you are always saying something overrated and some $@&#ing sh*t. You are just mother$^@%ing ignorant as a whole.

Get a #%$@ing life or you will get banned for life.


Quote by Arby911
Kristen is very open-minded; believes that everyone is entitled to her opinion...


Quote by NirvanaLuvr16
omg its better than i imagined... so dark and cozy and warm...


Read this please.
darkwolf291
Hookers and Blow
Join date: Sep 2008
1,483 IQ
#7
Good to see we finally got it done.

Some stuff I'd like to add. Call it an etiquette guide if you want.
1. DON'T ever act like an ass to anyone there unless they truly deserve it. Sound guy or not. If you act like an ass to the wrong person, you could get thrown out and barred from playing there. It's best to just bite your tongue and move on with it in most cases.

2. Always try and be quick when setting up and breaking down. There's usually bands coming on after you and it's common courtesy to always be as speedy as possible. Gives the other bands more time to set up, and they'll return the favor (at least in my experience).

3. NEVER think you have more experience and think you are better than another band.
Just because you've played more shows than someone else doesn't give you the right to talk down on them either. BE RESPECTFUL TO THE OTHER BANDS. If you are, they'll usually return the favor.

4. If at all possible, try and help the other bands unload their gear. It's a good way to make friends and they might even remember you, so mention your band name. If you're on tour with them, or play with them again, they'll probably help you unload next time.

5. Confidence is a good thing, but don't over-do it. You'll come across as cocky and arrogant.

Just my $0.02 on etiquette during a gig.
MortifiedLizard
The Angered Reptilian
Join date: May 2008
582 IQ
#9
If you're a less seasoned band, mistakes happen in the middle of songs sometimes, as Denied said DO NOT STOP. Your drummer should just assume that unless the song's over, they should never stop. Pick up where you left off while the drummer's still playing. Don't stop and start over again.
Epiphone Dot
DIY Esquire w/Neovin Power Rock pickup
Vox AC30VR 212
Arion MTE-1 (LED clipping diodes added)
Vox Tonelab LE
Roland SDE1000 delay

Quote by DaMarsbarPerson
By high-gain I don't mean stupid stuff. I just mean styles like Motley Crue or Iron Maiden
Bostonrocks
UG God
Join date: Nov 2007
7,064 IQ
#10
Quote by MortifiedLizard
If you're a less seasoned band, mistakes happen in the middle of songs sometimes, as Denied said DO NOT STOP. Your drummer should just assume that unless the song's over, they should never stop. Pick up where you left off while the drummer's still playing. Don't stop and start over again.



a friggen'-men
Quote by gregs1020
Brett has been saving for a splawn for 4 years
countries have been toppled in the time it's taking, revolutions won got a black pres

yawn


Quote by bubb_tubbs
When he finally gets one it'll probably be televised like the Berlin Wall coming down.
The end of an era
Bostonrocks
UG God
Join date: Nov 2007
7,064 IQ
#11
Quote by darkwolf291
Good to see we finally got it done.

Some stuff I'd like to add. Call it an etiquette guide if you want.
1. DON'T ever act like an ass to anyone there unless they truly deserve it. Sound guy or not. If you act like an ass to the wrong person, you could get thrown out and barred from playing there. It's best to just bite your tongue and move on with it in most cases.

2. Always try and be quick when setting up and breaking down. There's usually bands coming on after you and it's common courtesy to always be as speedy as possible. Gives the other bands more time to set up, and they'll return the favor (at least in my experience).

3. NEVER think you have more experience and think you are better than another band.
Just because you've played more shows than someone else doesn't give you the right to talk down on them either. BE RESPECTFUL TO THE OTHER BANDS. If you are, they'll usually return the favor.

4. If at all possible, try and help the other bands unload their gear. It's a good way to make friends and they might even remember you, so mention your band name. If you're on tour with them, or play with them again, they'll probably help you unload next time.

5. Confidence is a good thing, but don't over-do it. You'll come across as cocky and arrogant.

Just my $0.02 on etiquette during a gig.



I edited your post into the OP
Quote by gregs1020
Brett has been saving for a splawn for 4 years
countries have been toppled in the time it's taking, revolutions won got a black pres

yawn


Quote by bubb_tubbs
When he finally gets one it'll probably be televised like the Berlin Wall coming down.
The end of an era
shikkaka
Registered User
Join date: Nov 2010
494 IQ
#12
my new favorite thread
What?! There's a clean channel on my amp?!

Quote by GoodOl'trashbag
omfg i totally forgot about that, you sir are jesus christ.
darkwolf291
Hookers and Blow
Join date: Sep 2008
1,483 IQ
#13
Quote by MortifiedLizard
If you're a less seasoned band, mistakes happen in the middle of songs sometimes, as Denied said DO NOT STOP. Your drummer should just assume that unless the song's over, they should never stop. Pick up where you left off while the drummer's still playing. Don't stop and start over again.

This. Last gig I played, my guitar cut out in the middle of a song. So I stopped, switched out cables, and got right back into it. Unless it's a massive mistake, NEVER STOP THE SONG.
EDIT: And call me Frank.
Playing live is as much about playing music and being prepared as it is trying to get connections built up. You'll never get anywhere with a "We're the best band in the world and I can outplay everyone" kind of attitude.
Last edited by darkwolf291 at Jan 7, 2011,
shikkaka
Registered User
Join date: Nov 2010
494 IQ
#14
99% percent of the time the audience doesn't notice the mistake anyhow.
What?! There's a clean channel on my amp?!

Quote by GoodOl'trashbag
omfg i totally forgot about that, you sir are jesus christ.
ibanezgod1973
Banned
Join date: Dec 2008
170 IQ
#16
don`t drink alcohol or consume mind altering drugs (if you are into that crap) before your set. you will fumble most of the gig and you`ll get a reputation of amateur alcoholics or druggies, you will gain a bad reputation and will never be taken seriously.
shikkaka
Registered User
Join date: Nov 2010
494 IQ
#17
i dont know about that. I will agree that you should not be intoxicated out of your mind on any substance, but you also need to feel comfortable. If that takes one or two beers or some kind of drug, I personally say go for it. But you cant be a jerk or to messed up to play at your best.
What?! There's a clean channel on my amp?!

Quote by GoodOl'trashbag
omfg i totally forgot about that, you sir are jesus christ.
GezzyDiversion
Tame Impaling
Join date: Jun 2008
1,187 IQ
#18
1) If you break a string, do your best to finish the song and then switch to your backup guitar after or in a break in the song where you would have time to change.

2) Always take 2 guitars to a gig and have it tuned and on a guitar stand just off-stage. Even though it is more to carry, not many people are willing to lend you their guitar to finish a set.

3) Get your hands on a roll or two of white electrical tape and a sharpie pen, they are useful for writing settings on your amp or pedal, and you can mark up your leads so you know which ones are yours when people accidentally take yours.

4) Always take spare leads, batteries, kettle leads for your amp, strings, tools and valves.
Last edited by GezzyDiversion at Jan 7, 2011,
AtaBorMan
UG's reclusive wanker
Join date: Jul 2009
480 IQ
#19
First page!

Great advice/tips.

Unless you're a cover/tribute band (almost always then too) never ever dress up/act like a member of the band you're covering. It's not fun to watch and hear five Slash-wannabes in a row.
Quote by Todd Hart
Shooting your friends with a real gun is a definite faux pas.

Quote by mystical_1
Professor Plum in the Studio with a new Amp

Quote by snipelfritz
If only I were the only one at home right now. I don't need my parents asking who Mr. Wiggles is.
MatrixClaw
UG God
Join date: Nov 2006
10,723 IQ
#20
Quote by theogonia777
very good stuff so far. stickied. though the one thing you forgot to mention NOT to bring is your significant other.



My girlfriend came to my last show and it actually made me play better IMO, except for the fact that I was playing drums and the sound guy SUCKED. My monitors either weren't even on, or something was wrong, cause I couldn't hear anything but the bass player (and very little of him)

I told him to turn up my mix, and I still couldn't hear anything
Quote by Dave_Mc
I've had tube amps for a while now, but never actually had any go down on me
Quote by jj1565
maybe you're not saying the right things? an amp likes to know you care.





www.SanctityStudios.com
Last edited by MatrixClaw at Jan 7, 2011,
coolstoryangus
Ludicrous Display!
Join date: Jun 2010
820 IQ
#21
Quote by ibanezgod1973
don`t drink alcohol or consume mind altering drugs (if you are into that crap) before your set. you will fumble most of the gig and you`ll get a reputation of amateur alcoholics or druggies, you will gain a bad reputation and will never be taken seriously.

Good thread.
Although i find one or two drinks before a gig is good for calming the nerves and it doesnt affect your playing that much.. not for me anyway i play better generally cause im not completely crapping it
FatalGear41
War Mastiff!!!
Join date: Oct 2009
1,381 IQ
#22
Quote by ibanezgod1973
don`t drink alcohol or consume mind altering drugs (if you are into that crap) before your set. you will fumble most of the gig and you`ll get a reputation of amateur alcoholics or druggies, you will gain a bad reputation and will never be taken seriously.


^Yes! I was waiting for someone to post this. Do NOT show up at the gig loaded. The days of people (and your employers) laughing that one off are long gone.

Also, do not ever leave expensive gear or instruments backstage or in the truck outside unattended. It won't be there when you finish your set.

Do not overlook potentially serious issues and say "Oh, what the hell. We'll just live with it." I recall an incident with a bad ground that caused the main vocal mic to shock the singer. He thought it was no big deal. About 3/4 of the way through the first set, he found out how wrong he was.

Just a couple of things to look out for.
"Drinking is a skill and should be recognized as such!"

Quote by gregs1020
FatalGear41 knows the ways of the obscure. I hear it's just not with Gibsons. Beware, Halloween approaches...


Quote by Spaz91
DAMNIT FATALGEAR YOU RUINED MUH FLOW!
shikkaka
Registered User
Join date: Nov 2010
494 IQ
#23
Quote by coolstoryangus
Good thread.
Although i find one or two drinks before a gig is good for calming the nerves and it doesnt affect your playing that much.. not for me anyway i play better generally cause im not completely crapping it


I agree with this. Alcohol is a social lubricant. I know when I tried out for my first band, I was nervous as hell, I had a beer and it really helped calm me down and play a little more natural.
What?! There's a clean channel on my amp?!

Quote by GoodOl'trashbag
omfg i totally forgot about that, you sir are jesus christ.
Blompcube
Registered User Error
Join date: Aug 2006
4,368 IQ
#24
Quote by FatalGear41
^Yes! I was waiting for someone to post this. Do NOT show up at the gig loaded. The days of people (and your employers) laughing that one off are long gone.

Also, do not ever leave expensive gear or instruments backstage or in the truck outside unattended. It won't be there when you finish your set.

Do not overlook potentially serious issues and say "Oh, what the hell. We'll just live with it." I recall an incident with a bad ground that caused the main vocal mic to shock the singer. He thought it was no big deal. About 3/4 of the way through the first set, he found out how wrong he was.

Just a couple of things to look out for.

i couldn't agree more with this.

my band fired our lead singer about 6 months ago - we arranged to play at an open mic night in order to see how people would react to us as we had not gigged before. the singer turned up completely wasted and at the end of the 2nd song, stumbled sideways across the stage and crashed through the stage door into the dressing room. needless to say it was the first and the last time that guy performed with us.
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colin617
Registered User
Join date: Dec 2004
3,642 IQ
#25
I don't think it can be said enough: if you are nice to your sound man, he will be nice to you.

Also, remember that the more musicians you have on stage, the more sonic space is being taken. Try not to intrude on someone else. For example, my band is currently a 5 piece with:
1) guitarist/ vocalist (me)
2) guitarist/ pedal steele
3) bassist
4) keyboardist
4) drums
the guitars is set pretty bright (but not as bright as the pedal steel) so as to not compete with the bass sound. Likewise, my Rick and Vox don't compete with his blonde Bassman and 335.

Don't use more pedals than necessary. Things WILL go wrong and trouble shooting a huge board is a pain in the ass. I'm pretty pleased with my Pedaltrain Nano and Jrs.

Be nice to the bands you're sharing the bill with/don't be a dick. I was playing a local show with another fairly well known local band and a few newer acts. We went on second to last. The band preceding us was newer and had an ok set, but when the singer got off stage he said "Good luck following THAT." That level of douche infuriated us. My band -- comprised of pretty seasoned musicians (2 studio guys, one guy with a degree in music, and one who has clocked well over 1000 gigs, and a keyboardist) -- then blew the roof off and gave the asshole a lesson in humility.


Unfortunately, I tend to show up to most gigs fairly intoxicated. Not so drunk that I can't play, but drunk enough that I'm not nervous. ha.
GezzyDiversion
Tame Impaling
Join date: Jun 2008
1,187 IQ
#26
This isn't a rule you should follow, but an idea if you want to tighten up your live show, have a 'standard order' of songs on your set list and modify it when you write new songs so you can get the most out of the gig by tactically placing your songs (fast opener, ballads in the middle, long epic song to end with). Try not to have 2 similar sounding songs close together, mix it up a bit. You can also plan out when you change guitars or change tuning.

If you play loads of shows with the same or similar setlists after a while you won't be worrying about what song is next and if you go for ages without rehearsing, you still have some idea what you are doing.

There is a reason why bands tour the same set list night after night, again it is just something my band uses, if playing radically different set lists at each gig works for you, stick with it.
forsaknazrael
..kupo?
Join date: Jan 2005
3,141 IQ
#27
^I had the hardest time convincing my band to stick to a setlist. I don't know why.


I don't think there's anything wrong with intoxication. Like most things, you just have to know your limits. Don't get wasted. Don't get incapacitated. But don't be afraid to have a good time.
I play a little more energetically with maybe two beers inside me. Just loosen it up and feel less robotic.
However, I know I don't feel comfortable with more than a pitcher of beer in me.
SharkyR
Can't afford nice things.
Join date: May 2010
34 IQ
#28
I can't add anything for bigger gigs and the like, but from my very limited experience:

1. Make sure everything is switched on BEFORE you start (I could have sworn my amp was on...).
2. Never let anyone that isn't actually involved in the gig near the equipment, things WILL get knocked over, levels and settings messed up etc.
3. Involve and interact with the crowd. It just helps with the atmosphere.
4. This is going to sound really cliché, but ENJOY IT. Playing live is brilliant!
MANCHESTER UNITED
kangaxxter
tune up turn on rock out
Join date: Sep 2009
1,360 IQ
#30
One of my biggest pet peeves is when bands stop during there set to talk, whether it's introducing the band, talking about the crowd, or telling the story of how a song was written.

The less you talk through the microphone the better. People want to hear music not your life story. Nothing irritates me more than hearing:

"Well...., um.... a...., we're *microphonic feedback*, sorry about that..., we're Generic Rock Band Name and.... well... uh... we're... a rock band and we're here to play some... uh... rock music... and.... well, I hope you like us and, um... a... thats about it."

Remember: Less Talk, More Rock.

Also: it's a good idea to introduce your band at the end of your set instead of the beginning because then people will remember it and the people who stayed until the end of your set are the people who like your music (or are waiting for the next band).
Actually, I go by Dave, but there are already too many Daves on this forum.


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GezzyDiversion
Tame Impaling
Join date: Jun 2008
1,187 IQ
#31
Quote by kangaxxter

Also: it's a good idea to introduce your band at the end of your set instead of the beginning because then people will remember it and the people who stayed until the end of your set are the people who like your music (or are waiting for the next band).


Or during your last song, go into a quiet section and introduce each band member during the song and each member gets their own 8 or whatever bar solo whilst everyone cheers then go into the next section of the song.
kangaxxter
tune up turn on rock out
Join date: Sep 2009
1,360 IQ
#33
Quote by GezzyDiversion
Or during your last song, go into a quiet section and introduce each band member during the song and each member gets their own 8 or whatever bar solo whilst everyone cheers then go into the next section of the song.


Yeah, I've seen that done before, but I've also seen bands mess it up pretty badly. One of the good ones I've seen was a seven (I think) piece ska band. The singer just straight up introduced himself and the rhythm section (Bass, Drums, Guitar), then each of the horn players got their own 8 bars. I used to roadie for them, and I can seen you a recording of it, if you want to hear how it worked.
Actually, I go by Dave, but there are already too many Daves on this forum.


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Bostonrocks
UG God
Join date: Nov 2007
7,064 IQ
#34
Quote by denied
My favorite is when people decide that the time to start rambling is AFTER the last song. "Buy our merch...thanks for coming..this is our website....we're recording a demo...I like pancakes.."

The words are "Thank you and good night!"

Get it right people.



A MEN! dude for serious.
Quote by gregs1020
Brett has been saving for a splawn for 4 years
countries have been toppled in the time it's taking, revolutions won got a black pres

yawn


Quote by bubb_tubbs
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The end of an era
GezzyDiversion
Tame Impaling
Join date: Jun 2008
1,187 IQ
#35
Also, a torch with fresh batteries is a must have at a gig, so many times have I had to set up in the dark between bands and things fall behind the amps or I could see what I'm plugging the speaker lead into etc.

It kinda makes sense. Dark room, need light?
glamourkilledme
Registered User
Join date: Nov 2010
812 IQ
#36
Here's just some of my advice for gigging.

1. Don't settle for anything but exactly what you want in the monitor mix. Seriously. We played this one show where the sound guy asked our singer if he could hear himself. He answered "yeah it's ok." He ended up not being able to hear himself and was flat the whole show. If you can't hear yourself or need to have something adjusted, tell the sound guy, not being a dick about it, to adjust the levels in an affirmative manner. Also, if you don't get a very long sound check and you can't hear yourself or someone else in the band during the first song, don't finish the set like that. Tell the sound guy. Hearing yourself is probably the most important thing.

2. Bring a rug or carpet for drums. You have no idea if the stage will have carpet or if there is even a drum riser. Bring a carpet or else your bass drum WILL move. Trust me. Our drummer forgot his carpet and his bass drum slid and the mic sliced the head.

3. Make friends with good/popular bands. Pretty self-explanatory. This might get you more gigs in the future.

4. Try to keep songs in the same tuning together. For example, if you play in a band where half of your set is in drop d and the other is in standard, don't play a song in drop d, one in standard, another one in drop d, and 2 in standard. Play all the songs in drop d together and all the standard songs together. The audience wants to hear more music not watching you switch guitars/tune up or down.

5. BE PROFESSIONAL! Make sure nobody in your band is a jerk. My band opened for a band called Sparks the Rescue (really good pop punk band), and one of the bands who played before us got WAY too carried away. The singer during sound check just cursed nonstop into his mic and during the show acted like he was some big shot saying "come closer guys you won't get pregnant." Considering they were a new local band who wasn't very good, I'd say they didn't leave a good impression on anyone.

6. Don't talk too much on stage and don't talk more than you play. LESS TALK MORE ROCK. However, don't be timid. If you say "Hey we're so and so and this song is called this" then people will get bored and you will lose the audience's attention no matter how good you are. Also, a good tip is to engage the audience (hand clapping, singing along, requesting pits). They will have more fun and you will keep their attention.

7. This goes with number 6. Get into your music! If you just stand there, you will lose the audience and they will be bored. But if you get into your songs and have good stage presence, then you will get more attention from the audience. The most important thing I learned (from my cousin who tours almost all year) is that about 90% of what people hear is what they see. Unless you are some musical critic or something this will usually be true. I screw up all the time and if you jump around and look loose and confident then almost no one will notice. Also, it doesn't kill to smile or look happy. Last thing is look up at the audience every once in a while. Make eye contact with the crowd not the fret markers on your instrument.

8. For singers who don't use mic stands, invest in a good mic and cable and tape them together (this mainly applies to pop punk/screamo bands). Makes your mic look cool and the cable won't fall out of the mic if you step on it.

9. Invest in a wireless system. Not a bad idea for bands that jump around a lot.

10. Hang out with the crowd/your fans after the show. This can be the money making opportunity if you have merch and will also let you connect with fans/make new fans/show that you're not a douche.

11. It never kills to play a cover everyone knows. My band always plays the middle by Jimmy Eat World. Not because it's a song WE like but because EVERYONE knows this song.

12. GET A PEDAL TUNER IF YOU DON'T ALREADY HAVE ONE.

13. Practice your set AT LEAST a month in advance and plan everything you will do onstage. This includes choreography, what you will say, when you will switch guitars/basses or tune up or down.

I didn't read everyone's responses so if something has already been covered I'm sorry!
Last edited by glamourkilledme at Jan 8, 2011,
SharkyR
Can't afford nice things.
Join date: May 2010
34 IQ
#37
^^^ This is a great post. ^^^

Another bit of advice, make sure you know EXACTLY what you're doing, when you're doing it etc. Its all well and good trying to wing it and see what happens as you go along, but it will go wrong. Trust me on this, I've been there.

Being prepared is basically everything.
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Bostonrocks
UG God
Join date: Nov 2007
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#39
This is turning into epic threaddddd.....


Im' off to the studio, maybe we'll have a studio tips thread
Quote by gregs1020
Brett has been saving for a splawn for 4 years
countries have been toppled in the time it's taking, revolutions won got a black pres

yawn


Quote by bubb_tubbs
When he finally gets one it'll probably be televised like the Berlin Wall coming down.
The end of an era
Adam124
UG's Brian Badonde
Join date: Oct 2008
1,498 IQ
#40
Awesome thread. We definitely needed something like this!

Likewise it's always good to help other bands unload their gear or lend them a battery/cable etc if they're in trouble. They will remember you and hopefully when you need help you will have those guys to help you!
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