Posted May 24, 2010 08:38 AM
So, you're starting a band.Assuming you're the guitarist, you start with a friend of yours from school, say a drummer. You have a couple of rehearsals, you start writing some material, get optimistic and think about getting serious.
Next thing you have to look for members.A bassist, maybe a second guitarist and yes, a lead vocalist because you just can't sing.Perhaps the first two rehearsals are okay, and some bands never experience such problems but the things that COULD go wrong could be summed up in the next 3.
1) Creative differences.
You and your drummer friend are, say, into alternative rock, influenced by bands such as Radiohead, R.E.M, The Cure and so on.Now the bassist and rythm guitarist are mainly metalheads and the vocalist listens to punk rock.
While some bands manage to merge their members influences in various genres with astonishing great songs, the majority of the bands who experience such problems end up dissolving because of this.The thing is that, when you have a band, you want it to sound a certain way, you have influences, things you're better at maybe and instead off getting the sound you want you get a sound you're not sure you'd even listen to if it wasn't your band and you chanced upon it on a record.
Solution: Take your time to fill in the band spots.Most bands rush into filling all the spots which is just wrong.Or just check the candidates technical skills only, which is also wrong. Of course you have to get capable people in your band but you have to GET TO KNOW THEM first. Find out what kind of music they like, jam with them a bit, you should always know who you're getting in bed with. Technicality can be achieved through practice but you just can't get somebody to switch his musical tastes.
2) Personal difeerences.
The thing to remember here is that people never really show who they are in the beginning.When you go checking out people who want that one spot in your band they will be nice and cheezy and humor you and shit. Then, one month passes and you realise that that nice guy you got in your band is really a jackass who makes it difficult for everyone. Another thing to look at is the lead vocalist.. there are sure quite a few who are all nice and stuff but most of them are egomaniacs and douchebags. They could meddle in everything, give you "the rockstar attitude" and create tensions.
Solution: KICK THEIR ASS OUT! Nobody is irreplaceable and even if you have that really great bassist or guitarist or singer and you don't think you'll find a good replacement, trust me.. you will. What you can't fix is a band with hate issues.
3) Underappreciation of members.
You are NOT a solo artist and your band isnt a bunch of session musicians.
If you want to work alone, go solo and do everything yourself. Nine Inch Nails worked out fine, if you have the chops you can do it too. But if you choose to be in a band remember that they work WITH you not FOR you. Everyone has ideas, some could be good or even better than yours and you shouldn't be an asshole and override them. If you're the singer stop bitching about long solos that steal attention from you, if you are the lead guitarist stop bitching about the lack of long solos to the singer. Long solos are good, in a FEW songs. If you're the lead guitarist and the rythm guitarist wrote a good lead part, let him play it and do the rythm you douche! If the bassist came up with a complex piece, let him do it in the song, it kicks ass.And for f--ks sake, never come up with a name like The Dave Matthews band.Just don't.
Bands need to COLLABORATE and if you can't do that, don't be in one.