#1
I've been in a band with some of my friends for almost 19 months now and we haven't played any shows. We've just been writing songs (which are pretty good) although we only have 7 (we had 10 but we dropped 3 because we didn't like them anymore).

We have two guitarists in the band, me and this other guy and we both play lead and rhythm. We also have a drummer, a bassist, and singer which is obviously a pretty common line up.

I'm a decent guitarist and so is the other guitarist in my band and my drummer is really good but our bassist and singer aren't so good.

Up until recently the bassist hasn't been able to make many practices and I don't think he practices at home. He usually has trouble writing a part for our songs and just plays a basic thing to go with the rhythm guitar and sometimes says 'there's nothing else for him to do' in the song.

Our singer isn't bad but is a terrible lyricist and just puts random words together and it's pretty stupid. His voice is decent sometimes but he can't really sing high notes.. his voice just ****s when he tries this. I ask to see lyrics that he wrote but he usually comes with excuses not them to us and or has to be nagged to do so. The bassist and singer really stress me out sometimes, for example;

A couple of months ago our band was at my friend's house recording a song and we started off with drums, then guitars, bass, then vocals. My drummer gets the song on his first try, and me and the other guitarist do it on our second or third. During this time frame I ask the singer to let me see the lyrics, he doesn't have a written copy with him so I ask him to write them out. I keep nagging him but he doesn't do it.

So then it's the bassists turn to do his part and he says that he can't remember his parts. This was written about a year prior to this so you can imagine we were pretty ****ing annoyed. So the rest of the band went to take a lunch break while he starting writing parts for it.

We came back and so it was the singers turn. He doesn't sing loud enough for us to hear him at practice so we didn't know how it would turn out. The vocals sounded okay but the lyrics were about nothing so it was annoying. While he was doing the vocals he said "Are the lyrics good? Because if they're not the time to tell me is now".

I could have ****ing broken something at this point, if he had just wrote them out for us to talk about prior to this we would have time to check them over or he could have just been normal and showed us the lyrics beforehand.

Anyways I have to rap this up because it's pretty damn long... we're finally playing a show in a month or two and I'm thinking that after a couple of shows when people know about us I might try to find replacements. However this will turn out really bad because I'm good friends with both of them and we've tried to kick out the bass player before and didn't really 'work out'. What do you think?
#2
Nice book, but seriously, talk to the other guitarist and the drummer about the bassist and singer. If they agree then start thinking about replacements. Perhaps before the shows. You don't want people to first hear you with bad lyrics and really simple bass.

But, good luck!

Origionaly Posted by CTFOD
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#3
where abouts you live and hw old is ya cuz i'm interested in singing and i play some guitar add me up twistey10@msn.com i also write some lyrics aswell if u want any ask but anyway i would talk to everyone else and see what they think
#4
If there is nothing wrong with the singer's voice, theres no need to boot him, try writing lyrics yourself and present them to him. If he acts like a cock about it, then just tell him what the band (or just you) really think of his lyrics.

Tell the bass player that he is not at the level he should be, and that you guys are advancing beyond his ability and he is slowing you down musically. Don't kick him out, but get on his ass about practicing at home. If he doesn't pick up the pace, you guys might HAVE to boot him, which sucks.

If you are really that scared about losing them as friends, then the only option is to just leave the band.
*Official Deadhead*

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#5
Don't go into the studio until things are rehearsed very, very well. Otherwise, the result is exactly what you described here.

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.
#6
Quote by axemanchris
Don't go into the studio until things are rehearsed very, very well. Otherwise, the result is exactly what you described here.

CT

Oh I dunno Chris, I've written stuff at the last minute in the recording studio and recorded it with the band in the past, with pretty successful results. But I do agree that in general, you should have a damn good idea of what you are all gonna do before hitting a recording studio.

@tom-the-lawn
As for the singer, maybe you're being a little hard on him? You may not personaly like his non sensical lyrics, but maybe you're being a little too analitical of them. Most people don't actualy listen too hard to what the singer's actualy singing, just the overall effect of the music and vocals combined, and many, many, top selling songs are basicaly just like that, where the lyrics don't seem to make any sense and are used purely to enable the singer to use his voice like an instrument.
Still, it would have been nice to know what he was planning before going into the studio.
Please remember that being a decent singer doesn't automaticaly make you a decent poet or lyricist, but at least you now know there may be a problem writing wise on the lyric front that you could all help him with.

Your bassist sounds lazy, but it could just have been the pressure of being in a recording situation that made his mind go blank, I've seen that happen a couple of times with different musicians and it's even happened to me.
Some musicians are perfectly OK when it comes to jamming and rehearsing but fall to pieces when recording because of the need to get it exactly right, in which case a bit of perseverance is called for.
If he's OK in rehearsal, then he's probably got this problem, which will more than likely disappear when he gains more recording experience.
Last edited by SlackerBabbath at Jul 25, 2008,
#7
Hey! i just had that exact same problem around christmas last year! we had a vocalist that was always pissed off when we stopped during songs, when we said that we were not satisfied with the songs. He would sound like christina aguilera! always go for the high notes so that we felt we were playing on repeat.

Our bassist was just like yours! he never practiced. WE eventually said: "goodbye" and now! We have a great singer and is trying out a real bassist! there are too many guitarist in disguise bassists out there today. A tip! when people say! i can only do this because of that! that person should stop playing in bands. Bands should be creative and be happy to try something new! If he complains alot, kick him. You dont wanna be in a situation like this for years.
#8
Quote by SlackerBabbath
Oh I dunno Chris, I've written stuff at the last minute in the recording studio and recorded it with the band in the past, with pretty successful results. But I do agree that in general, you should have a damn good idea of what you are all gonna do before hitting a recording studio.


From my experience of having bands come to my place to record, this is certainly the exception rather than the rule. Nice to get lucky from time to time!

Generally bands that do that are the ones that can afford to pay for studio time to work out ideas. For most of the rest of us, we work out our parts in rehearsal so we don't spend money (waste money) screwing around with stuff in the studio.

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.
#9
Quote by axemanchris
From my experience of having bands come to my place to record, this is certainly the exception rather than the rule. Nice to get lucky from time to time!

Generally bands that do that are the ones that can afford to pay for studio time to work out ideas. For most of the rest of us, we work out our parts in rehearsal so we don't spend money (waste money) screwing around with stuff in the studio.

CT

Fair enough, but the kinda stuff I've written in the studio is the sorta song that takes 5 minutes to write, 5 minutes for the rest of the band to learn, and probably 20 minutes to record the whole thing, overdubs included.
The writing and learning can literaly be done in the lunch break.

I'm not saying it's something every musician can do, but if you're experienced enough, and if you can afford to spend a little extra money on studio time, you can actualy write and record in the recording studio, infact I've even heard of guys who prefere to work that way, writing everything with the guy who's gonna produce the album.
It's not something I'd do myself, well, not a full album's worth anyway, but it is a recognised way of doing it.
I think the point is, is that there are all these studio tricks and effects that work better if you write a song specificaly designed for these tricks and effects and that the over all recording tends to sound more spontanious if it's written just before it's recorded.
Personaly, it all sounds a bit like method acting to me, where some pretentious prick spends a few months living like a character they are gonna play in order to get the right feel and ambiance for the part, (Sir John Geilgood, while talking to famous method actor Dustin Hoffman, who had just done a 2 mile run to make himself look exhausted for a scene, once said 'My dear boy, why don't you simply act?' ) but that's just how some people like to work.
#10
get on the bassist's ass about not practicing. There's not much excuse for that.

As for the lyrics--there's no rule that says singer's have to be the lyricist. I write all my band's lyrics, and I don't sing. If they're that bad, write better. Or get someone else to write better. Hell, add a sixth band member solely for lyrics if you have to. I can stand a lazy bass, but lazy lyrics just piss me off :p
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#11
Quote by Fly, Marlowe
get on the bassist's ass about not practicing. There's not much excuse for that.

A year and a half of no action is more than enough to lose commitment.
#12
Quote by SlackerBabbath

I think the point is, is that there are all these studio tricks and effects that work better if you write a song specificaly designed for these tricks and effects and that the over all recording tends to sound more spontanious if it's written just before it's recorded.


Good point.

@Fly - Neil Peart, the drummer for Rush, is the band's lyricist.

Max Webster had a lyricist who wasn't even in the band!

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.