Alright, so my friend, with whom I'm trying to start a band with, is a really great singer and has an awesome rock voice. But the problem is, he doesn't know **** about music, writing music, and has very little experience live. But he acts like he knows **** about that stuff. And the thing that pisses me off is that he won't listen to me, the guy who has played in front of over 1,000 people more than once, the guy who has been playing guitar for almost 5 years, and the guy who has written (and performed) many of his own songs.

Yesterday when I was playing him a song I had written for him to sing, before I even got halfway through the song, he stopped me twice to say what I could have done better. And then he tried changing it into a whole load of crap, and wouldn't listen to me when I told him that it was good and shouldn't be changed. But then he's like "well people will like it more, Carson, trust me." and that pisses me off because there's nothing to trust about him. Like I said before, he has no experience, and he's trying to change my own god damned song.

I'd give him the boot, but there's literally no other singers in my area that even come close to his talent.

UG, what should I do (besides stop complaining)?
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deal with it.. thats the thing about being in a band you gotta work out many problems that you will encounter with a group of guys colaborating in anything... complaining about your singer in a forum isn't going to get you anywhere
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record two versions of your song, one in the way you wrote it, and the other in his way
then compare it, chances are that'll make him realize that your version is better, or otherwise get opinions from different people, and if they like his version, you should bend to it

there should be no putting any feet down, you can't force him to sing a song he had no input in, you should always compromise

maybe go get a beer, and talk about it before actually starting to write songs, you should get this sorted out before one of you gets his head smashed with a guitar, cos that would be a shame, such a waste of a guitar ...

anyways, good luck
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teach him some sort of theory so he knows why your doing what your doing
First learn to sing - even if you won't be singing it's always a handy thing for a musician to have under his belt. That and if you can't work out the problem then you can sing.

Also try teaching him some theory - sit down with him and write a song together. It's a case of having faith in each other and trust as to whether he'll go with your song or not. He doesn't believe that it's a good song so maybe re-write it with him and remember to try out different ideas and tell him if you think it works/doesn't work.
Chances are he feels like he has to talk big and act like he knows what he's talking about because he's feeling a little...useless...as a singer who doesn't right his own music. That may not be the case, I don't know him so maybe he is a complete jackass.
Assuming however that he is a semi-decent person, do what Sir Edwin CBE suggested, sit down with him one practice and work on a song together, and bounce CONSTRUCTIVE criticism off each other, if you find you're starting to just put each other down take a break for 10 minutes then go back to it. Once your singer feels like he's giving some sort of input other than just singing what you write, he might be more reasonable. If not then you should probably look for another singer.
As for his lack of experience live, try looking for places where you can get him some live experiences. I don't know what your situation is, whether there are any open mic nights or such-like but see what you can find.
sounds like you AND your singer are the problem.

if he's such a beginner, how come you need him in your band? you yourself said he had a good voice, so if that's worth it, tough it out. he may not know theory, but he may have good ideas. unless he's literally trying to sing an A# when you're playing a B, you should at least humour him.

if his ideas suck balls, it will become apparent. but it can't hurt to try them once or twice. if you're such a talented guy, then YOUR ideas will obviously stand out as better.

one of the biggest things you need to know about writing music with a group of people is this: riffs and chord progressions are disposable and changeable, and the most important thing is how the whole band sounds. If that concept is lost on you, so is the point of writing music. often, it can be a slight change of feel, or one different note that makes a riff 'click' with the band, and that's where great songs come from.

i learned long ago not to take it personally when my singer wants to change the order, or rework a chorus, etc... there are ENDLESS possibilities with music, so i just let it go where it takes me. As long as all the members of the band can humble themselves enough to realize that very very few songs are ever perfect from the first draft, you should be fine.
Last edited by frigginjerk at May 29, 2006,
Haha, sounds like Liam Gallagher Just tell him to shut the **** up and sing your words.
you should try what he suggests. how do you know it wouldn't make it better? you said he's talented...
This sounds familiar...

Anyways, you should just record two versions of the song. I also had a problem like this with my singer recently in which he tried to sing a C while I was playing a G when I told him to go to a B, because what he sang was suspended and didn't sound good with the chord. What we did (we were in the choir room at school when this happened) was get a few other people and perform both versions for them to see which one they liked more, which they picked mine. Then we voted on it in the band, which also preferred mine. That's what you should do.
he probably really just wants to do something to, even if it makes the song worse.... its something he did.
send him to singing lessons, sing notes, vocal improvise, all kinds of ****
so you could explain to him why yo chose what you chose..

but try to see it from his point of view, he's an amatuer working with a pro..
the pro is doing all the work. he probably feels like he's just there's to do what your telling him.