#1
I've played two gigs before and my bands stage presence was nonexistant. After working on getting comfortable moving around and playing, I'm left with one question. What should you do onstage when you don't have a part to paly in a song or like a break in song?
#2
move along on the music, do a little dance, do nothing....

i always take a few steps back, so no one will pay attention to me, but to the rest of the band, the people who ARE playing, move along a bit on the music, little subtle dance kinda thing:P
#3
What style of music?
If it's fast and more 'jumpy' so to speak, use the gaps in your playing to keep the crowd moving without drawing attention from the other members and the music! So be Energetic?
#4
Slap your bandmates asses...
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#5
step back and point to them, there is a song my band plays where we all stop except the drums and we all move off to the side and make like a path to the drums for his solo..... basically step out of the spotlight.

the other thing you should try is to watch how the professionals do it....
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#6
It could be because I generally play very groove/rhythm-oriented music when I'm jamming with others, but I'm always bobbing along to the beat of the song whilst I'm playing, and my drum hits/strums tend to be rather exaggerated during the more energetic moments. I make screwed up faces when I get into it too, but...that's not really stage presence. xD I'm far from a good guitarist/bassist so I generally don't do much in the way of stage presence on strings but bob my head and make my grr-face, but as for drums(not exactly Neil Peart the second, but I'm actually a giggable musician behind a kit) I'm all over the place with the arm-flailing and the like. xD
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#8
Your putting on a show. If you aren't usually an outgoing fellow then create a persona for yourself. You don't need to make it too dramatic just pick an archetype and start in. Find someone to emulate when you first begin and as you get more comfortable you'll find your own way. What kind of music do you do brother?
#9
Practice moving around at band practice to start with. If you're not playing at a certain part just look like you're enjoying yourself, which hopefully you are.
And no, Guitar Hero will not help. Even on expert. Really.
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#10
Quote by JasperPryce
****ing groove.


This is all it comes down to really.
#11
I agree with feeling the groove...and slapping your bandmate's asses...

But anyway I'm not sure what instrument you play because generally in modern music a guitar, bass or drums would be played almost constantly with no sizable break, I'm going to take a stab at a horn, but I'm probably wrong.
Anyway, a band I supported not too long ago, were like a 7-piece ska band, when the horns weren't doing anything they'd interact with each other in a "showy" kind of way to entertain those of the audience who were watching them. Not in a way completely dissimilar to members of Frank Zappa's band, like in this video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ly79mkffp7M
This is a bad example, I had one of the tracks off this DVD in mind where Scott Thunes (bass) and Ray White (guitar) interacted when they weren't doing much. But there's a similar idea here.

Though this may not be matching with the image of the band.

If you're a super serious band, just step back a bit and groove.
#12
Put a drink somewhere on stage... Take a couple swigs put it down. Play
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#13
As previous poster said, look at vidz of established professionals and how they interact in a live show.

Pick a spot on the back wall and play to that spot as if it were a person. Every once in a while, sing and or point/nod to that "person" as if they were a part of the show or an insider to the act and are totally digging what you are laying down.

Don't forget the occassional Townsend style windmill strum, or holding up your guitar and shaking it as if it's an offering to the gods of rock. 80's hair bands were experts at stage presence and image, even to the detriment of the music.

Even if you merely strike a Slash-like rock pose and look like your song is part of a cool buzz just shy of a casual sexual experience then it will look better than standing like a scarecrow with a stick up your ass.

Playing live is as much a dramatic presentation as a stage play. You have to look like you are 110% committed and excited about what you are playing, whether you actually are or not. If your band doesn't look like it's believing in the BS they are selling, then you certainly can't expect an audience to buy it. Just try to avoid looking like a prime candidate for rytalin.

I've found the most important thing to enhancing stage presence is to know your material in your sleep. It helps nerves and allows you to focus on stage presence and crowd stuff instead of focusing ALL your concentration on not F'ing up the music.
#14
Thanks guys, all of the quick feedback is much appreciated! I'm the bassist/rhythm guitarist (I switch off halfway through the set). We play pretty much any classic and modern rock anywhere from Beatles and hendrix to the Chili Peppers and Arctic Monkeys! So I'll just groove and ****ing rock!
#15
Quote by Loffle Monster.
Thanks guys, all of the quick feedback is much appreciated! I'm the bassist/rhythm guitarist (I switch off halfway through the set). We play pretty much any classic and modern rock anywhere from Beatles and hendrix to the Chili Peppers and Arctic Monkeys! So I'll just groove and ****ing rock!


Ah, now with this sort of stuff you have quite a spectrum of things you can do! (one of my bands does the same stuff, almost exactly! )

Though in my band I'm the only guitarist. But, to assume the lineup is vocals, lead guitar, rhythm guitar, bass, drums, it's so easy to take inspiration from bands, as this sort of lineup and musical situation is so common.

You can take the "move a bit back and just bob the head" route, or you could go the polar opposite and go for the "get into the crowd and **** shit up" route, and every point in between.

Though it's probably best to try to estimate how you crowd would react to certain things.
I was playing a gig with my previously mentioned band the other month, and during Superstition by Stevie Wonder, everyone was dancing, where previously it was fairly dead, so me and the bassist (almost simultaneously and instinctively, was quite cool actually) to keep the atmosphere going, got into the crowd and danced with them.
However I have heard and played to crowds who dislike this sort of behavior, so it's best to try to judge how your audience will react...though it can be quite tricky to do so.
#16
Just got back an hour or so ago from seeing Poison and Motley Crue. Talk about a couple of epic bands...

Amazing show, and stage presence everywhere. They owned the audience (and especially the chickees) from the first chord.

It felt like '86 again. But I digress...
#17
This is something that hasn't really been touched on yet so I feel like it may contribute:

I jammed with a guy that was a total stick on stage, almost like marching band at attention playing bass in an original rock band. I suggested to him that he stand with his feet just beyond shoulder length apart AT MINIMUM at all times. That simple change really impacted his stage presence, which led to confidence boosting, which led to...headbanging!!! :-)

If you're jam buddies are sticklike you may suggest that to them as a starting point.
#18
Quote by Piinball
This is something that hasn't really been touched on yet so I feel like it may contribute:

I jammed with a guy that was a total stick on stage, almost like marching band at attention playing bass in an original rock band. I suggested to him that he stand with his feet just beyond shoulder length apart AT MINIMUM at all times. That simple change really impacted his stage presence, which led to confidence boosting, which led to...headbanging!!! :-)

If you're jam buddies are sticklike you may suggest that to them as a starting point.


Excellent advice. A confident "rock" pose/stance is an excellent thing to build on. Wide stance, guitar hung low, head back slightly, and just enough subtle malice in your attitude to make the audience think that you are ready to piss in their beer, and they will enjoy every drop.