#1
Hi,

I'm new here and wrote my first question 30 minutes ago about having recorded and used some musicians on my tracks and it is all going great.

But Learning to reherse has been a lot harder.

I need to work on building up a backup band so I can do some gigs.

Any advice on doing that.

My tracks should be ready sometime soon in the next month, mabye I should give a copy to potential musicians, mabye even put up an add, and see which one of them
produces the best comparison to the tracks recorded is that the way?

I'd love some feed back.
Thanks

PatrockSA
#2
Bands fall into roughly two distinct categories, those with a strong bandleader and those that are more of a joint effort. Bandleading is a distinct skill separate from creative ability. It works this way because there are essentially two distinct reasons for wanting to play live. There are plenty of us out here who just love to perform, we'll swallow our pride and play just about anything to get up on stage and work an audience.

Other people, like you, have creative ambitions as their main motivation for playing. They aren't going to want to play with you unless they have an input into the music you play. This could either by taking your songs and adding in their own parts (which you might not like) or by taking over half the set and adding their own songs.

This is over simplifying of course but you should recognise and try to understand the stereotypes. The jobbing musicians will just want to turn up and play, they may be reluctant to practice too much and seem to lack commitment but they won't interrupt proceedings and spend time arguing about trivial details or have tantrums when their ideas aren't taken up. The creatives will do all of these things, because they care about the music. Bands don't fall out because of the Alex Jameses, its the Albarns and Coxons who struggle.

If you want other people to play your songs you are either going to have to be fairly rich or prepared to take on a lot of work. The first thing to say is make sure you know exactly what you want and make sure everyone else can fit in with your plans. Half the posts here are about friends falling out because they both thought they were the creative driver of the band and didn't work out a way of compromising.

The only way the jobbing musician can get what they want is to either find a creative or join a cover band, but they don't want a lot of hassle. They are likely to be easy to work with and a lot of fun but you will have to take all the responsibility for booking practice rooms, finding gigs, setting up PA, developing the sets etc. and you won't be able to pressurise them or they will just move to a band which is more fun. You will have to lay it on a plate for them which is where the extra work comes from. Someone with their own ideas and songs to play is going to be more committed but will have to have a fair share in the decisions and you will fall out overnight if you can't share.

So, step one is to decide if you want to take on running your own band or if you want a partner.
#3
Interesting Phil, thanks for that insight, I'm going to read over it a couple more times so I get the real gist of it, before I continue responding, but you are right about the direction. I think I'm more orientated to running the band and do all the organising layout, give each one the songsheets, all they have to do is pitch up plug in and play. That way I might be able to curb the direction the way i would like the sound. But I have learnt to ask for what I need and not demand it. Which has helped. One has to be colloquial about how to ask a musician to only do what you're asking and not to put in to much other influence unless specified. Tight line.

I know from other industries, they often took people from the outside, that way they could mold them, does the same work here? I still want to let the musicians be creative and put their parts in, but because my songs have a special personal melody, it has to stay that way in a sense. Some musicians capture that straight away, others are like Jimi all over the place. So it's about channeling the energy.
#4
Phil gave a lot of good information that I'd agree with.

One thing I'll add is that you have to consider WHY this person is playing with you. Here are a few possibilities, along with what it costs YOU to have that person.

1. Because they like to be part of a team, to be considered an equal member, and they like to contribute musically.

This person is the ideal candidate for some bands. They'll usually show up and play for free because they feel good about having their own needs met. They'll usually even invest their own time and money into the project, because they feel like they really are a part of the machine. The problem is, if you are the leader and they are there to just show up and play their part, their reason for being in it is being undermined. They are NOT an equal partner, and their musical contributions may NOT be welcome.

2. Because I just want to play - doesn't really matter what. "I just like to get out in front of people, man, and do my thing."

This person is good to have around. They're flexible, versatile, and love what they do. The downside is that they are often playing with all kinds of people, and when their plate starts to get full, something goes. That something may be you, unless you are offering something that makes them feel especially good about your project, meaning they choose a different project to push off the plank. If you're asking for a lot of time, or a lot of money, without really offering much in return, yours will be the one that gets binned.

3. The jobber. "I'll do anything. Weddings, bar mitzvahs, garage sales.... you name it." They'll get the set list, recordings, learn the parts the way they're supposed to go, and show up on time for the gig. If you're lucky they'll even rehearse with you more than once to make sure everything is good to go. They won't ask questions or tell you no lies. They'll do what you want them to do. Sounds pretty awesome, eh? Well, these people usually want money. They are paid to play. That's what they do. Do NOT ask them to contribute to the rehearsal space, pick up the bass player at his girlfriend's house, put up posters, promote the show. They have a job to do. They'll do it. If you worked at McDonald's and they asked you to open up your own wallet to buy supplies, you'd laugh at them. If they asked you to volunteer on your own time to come in and "just help out" for no money, you'd laugh at them. If they asked you to go out on your time and promote the newest "two can dine" deal on phone poles around town, you'd laugh at them. Those things aren't your job. They pay you to cook fries, so cook fries you shall do. And as soon as a better paying gig comes along with better perks and better working conditions or better hours or whatever, they're not prioritizing you anymore.

So, a person's willingness and expectation to invest themselves personally is inversely proportional to how much they will want from you. You have to strike that balance.

CT
Could I get some more talent in the monitors, please?

I know it sounds crazy, but try to learn to inhale your voice. www.thebelcantotechnique.com

Chris is the king of relating music things to other objects in real life.
#5
Yeah, thanks for that CT, sounds very interesting, I'll look into it and get back to you all.
#6
Wow Chris I'm loving those stereotypes, I'd say I personally alternate between all three of them depending on the circumstance.

1. Because they like to be part of a team, to be considered an equal member, and they like to contribute musically.

This is me in an originals band where I contribute to the songwriting process. I have no qualm with sacrificing the cash if it means pushing an original piece of art out to the masses, you get a sense of pride in it.

2. Because I just want to play - doesn't really matter what. "I just like to get out in front of people, man, and do my thing."

This will be me for one-off gigs here and there where a mate needs a fill in guitarist. For originals I won't really need cash. For covers definitely.

However if this one-off thing becomes a couple more, and I don't get cash, that's basically taking advantage of my session guitar role, which is our next option. I will generally tell you to go find someone a little less experienced at this point.

3. The jobber. "I'll do anything. Weddings, bar mitzvahs, garage sales.... you name it." They'll get the set list, recordings, learn the parts the way they're supposed to go, and show up on time for the gig.

This is my role for cover bands and proper session stuff where I'm required to learn another person's piece of music note-for-note or am required to play on their professional recording. I'll learn it straight up. Money is required at all times.

However this also comes with the proviso that (unless I'm being paid a whole lot) if you are a solo artist needing a band to fill in on your recordings, that I have some input into the arrangement of the song.

This is purely because the majority of solo artists do not arrange their songs in a way that is compatible with a band, in some cases there's not even a defined structure because it's just them on the guitar or whatever, chucking in an extra chorus here and there if they like. Little things like stops/starts, dynamics within a song, basically things that separate an amateur band/recording from a professional band/recording.

I don't wish to have input because I want artistic input on what I play. My issue is that if this recording comes out with my name on it, I don't want it to be of sub-par quality (in turn affecting my own reputation). Without proper arrangement it sounds like the solo artist came in and recorded their part first, and then the band came in later, rather than the entire band functioning as one unit.

Obviously this point becomes moot if the artist has a proper arrangement that is completely compatible with a band, however I've found that this is rarely the case.

Edit: I also ask that I choose the rest of the band in this latter situation. I hate putting in hard work and having a bunch of time wasters still figuring out their parts in the studio. I have some horror stories to go along with that, one had me actually yelling at practically everyone else in the studio, I was pretty angry. I recall yelling "you claim to be professional musicians....why can't you f#$king act professionally!"

I didn't work with that particular artist again. It was a mutual decision
And no, Guitar Hero will not help. Even on expert. Really.
Soundcloud
#7
Quote by AlanHB

Edit: I also ask that I choose the rest of the band in this latter situation. I hate putting in hard work and having a bunch of time wasters still figuring out their parts in the studio. I have some horror stories to go along with that, one had me actually yelling at practically everyone else in the studio, I was pretty angry. I recall yelling "you claim to be professional musicians....why can't you f#$king act professionally!"

I didn't work with that particular artist again. It was a mutual decision


^ LOL

CT
Could I get some more talent in the monitors, please?

I know it sounds crazy, but try to learn to inhale your voice. www.thebelcantotechnique.com

Chris is the king of relating music things to other objects in real life.