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Taking the bull by the horns ...


EddiePlaysBass

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As some of you have noticed (through my posts and / or PM's), I have started growing weary of my current band. I'm not quitting just yet, as I want to see what 2010 will bring, but I have decided to reduce my involvement and see what comes of that.

 

In the meantime, since I don't want to be "between bands" too long, I've started looking for musicians or a band to join. Difficult as it is, I have one good lead and one potential one !

 

Next week - if the planning permits it - I'll get together with two female vocalists for a "jam session". They managed to find no less than 4 guitarists and 2 keyboard players, but just one drummer and one bass player (me). So they'll have "jam sessions" with the rhythm section and 2 guitarists + 1 keyboard player at a time. Ironically they want to do "Like The Way I Do", the Melissa Etheridge tune. Ironic because I ordered a "best of" cd just two weeks ago, with the intent of learning that tune ... No kidding !!!

 

We will see what will come of that. I told them I have quite a busy schedule: Mondays is rehearsal with The Dapper Dans (until I quit, if I would decide to do so), Tuesdays I take evening courses and Wednesdays are dedicated to the misses, so no music on those days. Never made an exception, and don't plan on starting now.

 

The second, potential lead is with a big band ! Unfortunately for me, I was a little late in replying, and come January they have a guy auditioning. He cannot read notes, but the band leader said he'd "work with him". I haven't explained that I can decypher sheet music, but instead sent him a link to MySpace (he seems to like my "walking bass" skills, non-existent as they are) and asked to send me some sheet music and MP3's anyway, stating that: "if it works out with the other guy, great for you. If not, give me a try". He liked the idea, so perhaps I might end up getting a sub gig out of it.

 

To be honest, I'm not overly fond of the idea of starting from scratch with the two female singers, but with 4 guitarists, a drummer and 2 keyboard players, I might end up with a few good contacts for future endeavours. And the ladies might surprise me still !! Now to work on my slap bass skills for that Melissa Etheridge tune :grin:

"I'm a work in progress." Micky Barnes

 

The Ross Brown Shirt World Tour

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It's funny. I was watching "That thing you do!" not too long ago, and there was a scene that really struck a chord with me. The lead, drummer Guy Patterson, is hanging out with his idol, a legendary jazz pianist named Del Paxton. Del asks Guy about his band and gets the rundown on The Wonders. And then the advice comes out, that Guy needs to keep on playing, no matter what.

 

It seems like you've taken this advice. Every band changes during it's lifespan. I've had a couple of bands that I could see staying together for a long time. But things change. People change. And bands break up for whatever reason. Even a band as musically brilliant as The Beatles broke up.

 

But you need to keep on playing, no matter what. It gets in your blood. So you start searching out new possibilities. If the Dapper Dans doesn't rebound? You can always find something that's more rewarding.

 

I'm dealing with the concept of being without a band right now. I had been trying to put a cover band together, but there were some fundamental differences about what we should be doing and as a result we're not doing anything now. The guitar player and I may do something. And the drummer wants to do something too. I can't work with the singer we had though. But can I get those two on the same page? I've got to wait and see. In the mean time I'll keep playing some jams. Hopefully I'll come across some people who might be of a like mind and something will develop. I've also been toying with the idea of a quartet that's playing standards with a vocalist. But that seems to be some way off, and I'll definitely need to find the right people for that.

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Thanks everyone. Yes, I definitely don't want to fall into the "between bands" situation at this point. I have my sights set more on the big band, as it would be totally different, but since that position is currently unavailable, I'll go and hang with the other coverband and see what happens.

 

At least the woman who is taking charge has stated that she wants to do some different, more contemporary songs too. And hey, someone else is in charge of organising and planning ! All I gots to do is show up and play.

 

Hopefully I'll get a song list today, though ... I only have tomorrow and a small bit of Sunday to prepare :)

 

Nicklab, good luck on your search :thu: I have two leads now, but I could end up being "between bands" if neither fall through and I get tired enough of my current band.

 

Ross, I've tried for the past couple of years to make it work. I can honestly say that I gave it my all, and it didn't work. It seems I'm on a completely different page here compared to the rest of the band.

"I'm a work in progress." Micky Barnes

 

The Ross Brown Shirt World Tour

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Sounds like you know what you want. cool. I withdraw my comments...

 

Good luck!

 

In refernce to Nicklab, my wife calls me a gig whore... It is the play anytime, anywhere thing. It makes you better. Now that she has had some of the gigging experience, she is a self proclaimed gig whore... (Don't even go there!!)

 

Big band might be fun for you. Keep us posted. The more you play.... the more you will have played.

 

 

"When I take a stroll down Jackass Lane it is usually to see someone that is already there" Mrs. Brown
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Okay, just got a mail: we are on for next Friday ! Shame I'm going to a Rammstein concert the day before and will have to work, but hey I traditionally suck at auditions, so why change things now ?

 

I've been asked to learn :

 

Neil Young : Rocking In The Free World

Black Sabbath : Paranoid

Lynyrd Skynyrd : Sweet Home Alabama

Melissa Etheridge : Like The Way I Do

Dolly Parton : 9 To 5

Anouk : Girl Girl Girl

Anouk : Nobody's Wife

 

I know the first three, I think I can do the Etheridge tune (even if it's mostly slapping), I have no clue what that Dolly Parton tune is and the two Anouk songs, luckily I have a live "greatest hits" of sorts. Anouk is a Dutch artist, so don't sweat it if you ain't ever heard of her :)

 

Guess I know what to do tomorrow ... The fun part is that a week later, there's supposed to be a second "jam" with different musicians. I'm hoping they won't expect to be playing 6 different tunes ... At least it'll do wonders for my repertoire :grin:

 

[edit] One of the guitarists sings ... Interesting !

"I'm a work in progress." Micky Barnes

 

The Ross Brown Shirt World Tour

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First, if you take Dapper Dans "less seriously" on the inside, you could do more than one project. You can learn the songs, make suggestions, play the gigs, but not have it be your primary project (in your heart).

 

I think the project next week has potential - and should be fun!

 

I don't want to discourage anyone from learning slap, but you can play that Etheridge song with a pick (or a punishing fingerstyle) if you EQ yourself correctly. It's more the pops than the slaps that may be problematic (like at 4:23 - the part with the classic slap/pop alternating notes).

 

Tom

www.stoneflyrocks.com

Acoustic Color

 

Be practical as well as generous in your ideals. Keep your eyes on the stars and keep your feet on the ground. - Theodore Roosevelt

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Most parts of the Etheridge tune are easy and I can slap them no prob. It's those fills that make the song so cool, that I can't execute properly :( Lousy timing when slapping and lack of proficiency.

 

We'll see what gives. Haven't been able to play at all today and I'm almost off to see my lady, and next week will be a big no-no in terms of practising so what I learnt yesterday, will have to suffice.

 

Oh and I'm singing lead on "Oh, Pretty Woman" with The Dapper Dans tomorrow. Wonder what'll come of that :freak:

"I'm a work in progress." Micky Barnes

 

The Ross Brown Shirt World Tour

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Brilliant. I specifically mentioned that I cannot make rehearsal prior to 08:00 PM because I have to come home from work, eat, load in and drive to rehearsal (get home at 07:00 PM, eat and load in by 07:30 and drive 30 minutes). What do I get in the mail today ?

 

"Rehearsal starts at 07:00 PM".

 

Talk about organisational talent. Does anybody even read their mails anymore? And if they do, do they take a second to ponder what was said ? Whatever, we'll see what gives. Told her I won't make it before 8, like I mentioned before.

"I'm a work in progress." Micky Barnes

 

The Ross Brown Shirt World Tour

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Anouk is great I used to play lots of tracks back at home. Have a go at The dark it is wicked. Nobody's wife is a great easy track.

 

Good luck Dave

 

www.myspace.com/davidbassportugal

 

"And then the magical unicorn will come prancing down the rainbow and we'll all join hands for a rousing chorus of Kumbaya." - by davio

 

 

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Brilliant. I specifically mentioned that I cannot make rehearsal prior to 08:00 PM because I have to come home from work, eat, load in and drive to rehearsal (get home at 07:00 PM, eat and load in by 07:30 and drive 30 minutes). What do I get in the mail today ?

 

"Rehearsal starts at 07:00 PM".

 

Talk about organizational talent. Does anybody even read their mails anymore? And if they do, do they take a second to ponder what was said ? Whatever, we'll see what gives. Told her I won't make it before 8, like I mentioned before.

 

ROFL. I've had the same conversation countless times.

Things are just the way they are, and they're only going to get worse.

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Well, it's 6:30 PM and I'm still at work, and will be for another 30 minutes. That means getting home by 9 PM so no audition for me today ...

 

I called her but got the voice mail. Will do a courtesy ring before I leave here and then send a mail to see about next week. I'll also have to explain that this is how it goes with me: I know what time I start but I do not know what time I stop.

"I'm a work in progress." Micky Barnes

 

The Ross Brown Shirt World Tour

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That would be a problem for me if we were in a band together and it came up a lot. I would suggest a day in which that can't be an issue or I would suggest it ain't a good fit. Missed practices don't do it for me (especially when everyone else is ready to go).

 

Just my two cents.... the prick that I am....

"When I take a stroll down Jackass Lane it is usually to see someone that is already there" Mrs. Brown
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I got her on the phone again and turns out one of the keyboard players bailed too. No idea what the reason was. She also said she's got another bass player who's interested but can never do Fridays. I'm still not sure where I stand with this, but I'm going to be honest with her and tell her the above. What happened today can happen again at any given point.

 

Ross, believe me, it annoys me more than anybody. My current band has to deal with it occasionally but I tend to make a point out of leaving on time, especially since my door-to-door (moment I get out of the office until the moment I walk into the kitchen) is 2 hours . I really don't like staying late and have had many a heated discussion with management about this fact. There's a cult of overtime at work, but I figure that if I can do all of my work in the designated time, why stay back ?

 

That said, there's slow seasons, heavy seasons and unexpected "surprises" so I can never guarantee up front whether or not I can make it home on time. Today was definitely a "surprise" day. And this does not go for rehearsals alone, it also includes any other kind of planning I make. You can imagine the misses not liking that. What it comes down to, ultimately, is what pays the bills. Work does. Rehearsals don't.

 

Oh, and I practise on my own time ;)

"I'm a work in progress." Micky Barnes

 

The Ross Brown Shirt World Tour

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I think you should try to meet up with these people, audition, if they like you and you like themm maybe you can work out a better schedule.

 

I hope it works out for you.

"Call me what instrument you will, though you can fret me, yet you cannot play upon me.'-Hamlet

 

Guitar solos last 30 seconds, the bass line lasts for the whole song.

 

 

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There's a mail going round now for a reschedule in early January. Different songs on the set list too, which is cool. They want to do Limp Bizkit*s version of "Behind Blue Eyes", which is not cool.

 

At this point I'm beginning to think I should retreat from bands for a while and work on my skills. Last two leads towards bands both required me slapping in some sort of setting, so I take it as a sign that I should work on my slapping technique. I'm also finding it more and more interesting to play the electric upright and would like to devote more time to that too.

 

We'll see what happens. I'm tired of the constant band drama.

 

* I'd like to see anyone defend Limp Bizkit's existence ...

"I'm a work in progress." Micky Barnes

 

The Ross Brown Shirt World Tour

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I don't know, I think it might be wise to stay playing with a band. It is different than playing with yourself :freak:

 

Band drama is no fun I agree but playing with others is important to maintain and improve skill. You can always work on techniques at the same time.... most of us do.

"When I take a stroll down Jackass Lane it is usually to see someone that is already there" Mrs. Brown
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At this point I'm beginning to think I should retreat from bands for a while and work on my skills. Last two leads towards bands both required me slapping in some sort of setting,

 

No, sir. You are wrong. Get off the damn couch and into a garage somewhere.

Things are just the way they are, and they're only going to get worse.

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.....At this point I'm beginning to think I should retreat from bands for a while and work on my skills. Last two leads towards bands both required me slapping in some sort of setting.......

Only you know if that's the right thing for you to do David. But remember, the only way to get better is to find the time to do both, hone your skills at home and play music with others.

Visit my band's new web site.

 

www.themojoroots.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

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At this point I'm beginning to think I should retreat from bands for a while and work on my skills. Last two leads towards bands both required me slapping in some sort of setting,

 

No, sir. You are wrong. Get off the damn couch and into a garage somewhere.

 

I agree. The best way to stay motivated is to have a purpose. Being in a band is a purpose and will force you to keep playing.

Lydian mode? The only mode I know has the words "pie ala" in front of it.

http://www.myspace.com/theeldoradosband

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Yeah I know, I know. I'm a kitten* for not just quittin' and joining a different band or whatever.

 

That said, I do feel the desire (not so much need) to improve my rudimentary slap technique as it would benefit me down the line. And my knowledge of theory and reading. And my endurance and right-hand technique, but that is best worked at during rehearsals, I find.

 

And there's the upright. I don't see myself playing "Rocking In A Free World" on the electric upright anytime soon ... :freak:

 

 

 

* you know what I mean ;)

"I'm a work in progress." Micky Barnes

 

The Ross Brown Shirt World Tour

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Who says you can't work on your slap technique and be in a band at the same time? I practice slap bass, tapping, harmonics, etc. at home and I almost never use them playing with my band. Someday I might. I am talking based on my experience that it's a lot harder getting motivated to practice if I'm not playing out. Then again I'm a lazy S.O.B.

 

Hmm, Rocking in a Free World may be pretty cool on an electric upright bass. Try it!

Lydian mode? The only mode I know has the words "pie ala" in front of it.

http://www.myspace.com/theeldoradosband

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Alrighty, things are getting interesting ...

 

(1) Had a great rehearsal with The Dapper Dans today. We worked on Chuck Berry's "No Particular Place To Go" and it went well. We collectively decided not to do "Pretty Woman", so no lead vocals for me yet but I'm singing backup on more and more. I have an idea on how to play out the singer against the guitarist and in the process add two songs to the repertoire. And I still intend to sing lead on "Maybellene".

 

(2) The audition with the female-fronted cover band is still on. I learned The Who's "Behind Blue Eyes" thanks to Stuart Clayton's John Entwistle Bass Book* and am focusing a bit on slapping, since I have to get the Melissa Etheridge tune in shape.

 

(3) The swinging big band leader just informed me that the other bassist they had lined up threw in the towel as he found the music to be too difficult, putting me in pole position again. These cats do Stray Cats stuff but also Tower Of Power, so I might be in over my head as well, but what the heck ! I'm going to give it a try. They have a gig on 02 January '10 which I might attend (no, not to sit it).

 

So things ARE looking up, and I might end up having to make choices. That said, both the guitarist and the singer of The Dapper Dans will become fathers in 2010 (March and July respectively) so we might be on an extended hiatus, giving me ample time to work with the other bands ...

 

* Stu, when are you going to repay me for constantly plugging your products ? :grin:

"I'm a work in progress." Micky Barnes

 

The Ross Brown Shirt World Tour

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