Music Player Network Home Guitar Player Magazine Keyboard Magazine Bass Player Magazine Electronic Musician
Topic Options
#1646064 - 06/22/05 02:27 PM This is the hard part...
rainbird Offline
Senior Member

Registered: 01/25/05
Posts: 139
Loc: Seattle
There have been a number of posts lately about
how difficult it is to keep it going when band
members move on.

It is also difficult to be the one who feels that
THEY must move on (or implode...) Any minute
now, the phone is going to ring...and I'm going
to "come out of the closet," so to speak, about
a decision I made in leave by the
end of this year.

I was going to wait until about Septmber, but when that 2006 booking hit the schedule today,
and I found out the leader already had the contract for it, I realized that I can't let them
continue booking into 2006 without letting them

Maybe this is too much lead time. But as I
mentioned, they book WAY out. The end of the
year will mark the two-year-plus point. (Band years are like dog years, so...that's 14 years, right?)

I'm not going to leave them stranded. But they
need to start thinking about what they're going
to do when I leave. I am going to leave. This is
not negotiable. I'm concerned that one other key
player might decide to leave when I do...and I
*sincerely* hope that won't happen. I don't want
to torpedo the whole band.

I will be diplomatic. It's simply a case of
this band not being about what *I* am about, and it never will be. I've ridden this bus to the
end of the line. And I'll give them my very best until the end - but I've GOT to set some limits
or I won't be available for something which does

and there's the phone...

#1646065 - 06/22/05 03:18 PM Re: This is the hard part...
Tedster Offline
MP Hall of Fame Member

Registered: 09/21/00
Posts: 5935
Well, hey there, Rainbird, how's everything up in Ketchikan, Alaska? \:D

IMO, you're worrying way too much over this. Not that I don't understand, but, you seem more worried about what they're going to do without you than about what you're going to do after you leave. \:D


What type of band is this? Gigging a lot? On the road? Doing a lot of originals, selling CDs? Or something more casual?

Have you got another project lined up?

Would you consider doing two projects? A lot of folks use one band as a moneymaking venture, and have another band for more of a creative outlet.

What if (horror of horrors) you tell them and they don't flinch? There could be a chance if you've been unhappy, they may have been reading your signals for some time. Perhaps others are just as unhappy.

I say if you've got something else lined up, go for it. Be nice...just say something along the lines of "It's been fun, but I feel I've done about all I can do with this band, and it's time to move on". Keeping in mind "moving on" doesn't always mean "better". Can just mean "new and different, a new challenge". Happens to every band sooner or later.
"Cisco Kid, was a friend of mine...(WAH WAH WAH WAHHH!)"

#1646066 - 06/22/05 04:21 PM Re: This is the hard part...
rainbird Offline
Senior Member

Registered: 01/25/05
Posts: 139
Loc: Seattle
Not *quite* Ketchikan, Tedster. And thanks for
holding my hand while I made the phone call. \:\)

I just got off the phone with the bandleader, who
is perceptive enough to have been ...well, not TOTALLY surprised. And it went better than I had expected and it is SUCH a relief to have gotten it off my chest. He appreciated my honesty and
the amount of lead time I provided. Whew!

You *have* nailed it - I've been more concerned with the effects of this decision on my bandmates than what effect it will have on me! But what THEY do when I leave isn't my decision to make, thankfully. The bandleader has indicated to me that he may be wanting to make a few personnel changes of his perhaps my departure will be a catalyst for necessary change for THEM as well.

But as you pointed out - that's not anything I
should be losing sleep about either!

You asked what sort of band I'm leaving: a fairly
successful corporate cover band. Frequent gigs,
no touring. Fun for awhile - but frankly, I am more comfortable playing in seedy little dives for my friends. \:\)

Do I want the next project to be covers or
originals? I'd like to do a bit of both - what
matters to me is that the band plays material
which reflects and showcases the strengths (and preferences) of the band members, as well as pleasing the target audience, whatever that may entail. I probably WILL need to be in more than
one band to make sure that all the basic food
groups are represented and that I get all my
vitamins and minerals. (I feel like I've been trying to subsist on a diet of Cheetos...) RUNAWAY METAPHOR ALERT!!!

Anyway, this does seem to have been the right
time to deliver this news - I told them that if
the perfect replacement should turn up next week,
I'm totally fine with whatever they decide, but
that I'll honor all gigs which are on the books.
The musical community is too small and incestuous to leave blazing bridges behind me - you never know who you'll end up playing in bands with five or so years down the road...


Thanks for listening.

Here we go, off into the wild blue...whatever!

#1646067 - 06/22/05 04:50 PM Re: This is the hard part...
Tedster Offline
MP Hall of Fame Member

Registered: 09/21/00
Posts: 5935
Hey, no problem. I understand completely. I understand about "small and incestuous" musical communities as well. Bands never really break up, they just recycle. Been there, done that. \:D

As far as branching, if that's what you're looking for, I can't really be of much help, I'm afraid, as I battle many of the same demons. But, count your strengths, I reckon. You may consider...

What is your goal a couple of years down the road?

What you do in a band...instrumentalist, vocalist, both?


What instruments? (Good bass players, for instance, are harder to find than guitar players)

The scope of the outlying communities, and their respective music scenes. Is a move out of the question? Say, for instance, you're in a smaller town 100 miles from a larger city. Would a move be in order? Would it be worth it? From what I deduce from your writing, probably not, which is fine, too. But, you might find some folks from a smaller town 10-20 miles away that might work.

Hey, good luck, keep us posted!
"Cisco Kid, was a friend of mine...(WAH WAH WAH WAHHH!)"

#1646068 - 07/06/05 11:12 AM Re: This is the hard part...
rainbird Offline
Senior Member

Registered: 01/25/05
Posts: 139
Loc: Seattle
Time to check in with an update, and it's all good! While the future of the group I'm leaving in
January is somewhat uncertain at this point, (some
of the members are starting to talk about it in the past tense, which seems a bit ODD to me, but!)
anyway, last Friday I got to practice with a side project the bass player has been with for 10 years... and it's looking likely that I might be doing more with them in the near future. Musically and culturally, they're a much better fit and I am really stoked about this one!! Also have a possibility of doing some collaboration with two friends (that'll take care of the urge to
inflict original music on people, I guess!) So, basically....whew! Signing off to learn a ton of tunes for the next practice with the new band...
and grinning from ear to ear!!