Jump to content


Please note: You can easily log in to MPN using your Facebook account!

The "Complaints about [your] band" thread


EddiePlaysBass

Recommended Posts

Ok so here's the deal. I was going to put up yet another thread in which I am complaining about my band, but I figured that I'll probably end up repeating myself and what use is yet another one of those threads ?

 

And then I said to myself, why not a sibling of the informal drop-in thread, assuming anyone but me wants to complain about their band ? It will either disappear in the archives or people can use it to vent without starting a separate thread per se. I know I'll be posting plenty in here ...

 

 

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

 

The Ross Brown Shirt World Tour

Link to comment
Share on other sites



  • Replies 52
  • Created
  • Last Reply

And here I go ...

 

Our singer, in all his wisdom, thought it would be a good idea for us to record a demo this year, since we have little to no shows booked and "what else are we supposed to do". Learn new songs is one thing, but who am I kidding ? That'll never happen.

 

All in all, I am all for the idea of recording a demo, if for no other reason than to have a good quality recording with which I can either shop for gigs, or shop for a different gig (i.e. with another band). Because those who have been following my lamentations can probably anticipate that at some point even I will grow a set and just quit. Nothing against my Zoom, the rehearsal recordings are more than satisfactory. But a bit of studio experience never hurt anyone, I guess.

 

So out of the blue, I get a mail from our guitarist, which is actually a reply to a guy with a demo studio. In an act of never before seen initiative, our guitarist asked for rates and availabilities. He never ceases to surprise me. Then, he replies to the guy, with me in cc, saying I'm the "band leader" because I take care of contracts and such, and he just plays the guitar ...

 

This cracks me up to no end, because it confirms how the band sees me: I have to book the gigs, take care of all PR and whatever they don't like, but when it comes to any decision in which they LIKE to get a say - and the worst part is that for anything that concerns the set list, I always try to discuss at the end of the rehearsal what we'll learn for the week after, and let them make suggestions - they won't listen to me or get all passive-agressive and simply not learn the tunes.

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

 

The Ross Brown Shirt World Tour

Link to comment
Share on other sites

You can take it as a sign of respect. Be thankful that someone else is showing some initiative. I'd be concerned about dropping money on a nonperforming project, this should be considered an investment. Are future gigs supposed to cover the costs?
If you think my playing is bad, you should hear me sing!
Link to comment
Share on other sites

recording a demo, ...... Nothing against my Zoom,

 

I have been making a habit of taping the direct out from the mixing board when we play a place with full PA support. It sounds way better than it should. If I could just get the guitars to turn their amps around like a monitor, it'd be perfect. Really perfect. And free.

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

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Well, EPB, as I used to say to my young sergeants," Some are born to greatness, and others have it thrust upon them, and you've been thrust upon!"

 

You are the de facto band leader, therefore, tell the band, "we are going to learn some new songs, and we are going to paly more gigs" and then make it happen. The big surprise is that a lot of people would rather follow than lead, especially if the leader is the ne doing all the work and they just have to show up.

 

I really enjoy the worship band I play in, but we do have a tone-deaf soprano who completely misunderstands the "less is more" approach to backing vocal and high harmonies. So we set her up with a mike that is loud in her monitor and dead in the mains and everyone is happier. It's a shame though, because when she does hit the right notes, she really does sound good.

"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.

 

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Sir, If your band is not going to learn new songs and have a decent set list, stop right there.

 

What exactly would you be selling by having a good demo if you have nothing (set list, ability to play a gig for a whole night) to sell?

 

I know I sound like a pain in the ass but how many songs do you guys have?

"When I take a stroll down Jackass Lane it is usually to see someone that is already there" Mrs. Brown
Link to comment
Share on other sites

So we set her up with a mike that is loud in her monitor and dead in the mains and everyone is happier.

 

Beautiful. Just beautiful. I enjoyed this post muchly. Thanks.

 

Peace.

--s-uu

 

until she figures out the little scheme that she's not in the mains- saw that done on a praise band once, girl felt foolish, lied to and patronized. It ended a lot worse than it had to. Makes me wonder if that's the best solution.

"Political language... is designed to make lies sound truthful and murder respectable, and to give an appearance of solidity to pure wind"- George Orwell
Link to comment
Share on other sites

What exactly would you be selling by having a good demo if you have nothing (set list, ability to play a gig for a whole night) to sell?

 

I'd be selling myself. If the recordings come out well and I pick the right songs with nice bass lines (I have a few where I just don't bother and pump out straight eights) it's a good thing for myself to have. No ?

 

I know I sound like a pain in the ass but how many songs do you guys have?

 

I'm ashamed to say this but ... 19. And unfortunately, since most of our songs are about 1.5 to 2 minutes long, this means we have a set list of just short of an hour with these songs. This is a genre in which we should be rotating entire sets per gig that we play, yet we always play the same 12 - 19 songs. And then the band wonders why our "hardcore" fan base won't show up any more ...

 

Oh and get this. Our guitarist suggested we do 2 original songs and 2 covers. I replied saying no, we are a cover band. We'll do 4 covers. He has his originals band to record original songs with ...

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

 

The Ross Brown Shirt World Tour

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I see your point about having a demo of your playing. Maybe you could also get tracks that boost the bass for demonstration purposes.

 

We rotate our set lists by venue and date. We have over a hundred songs ready to go. I bet that is not uncommon. You have to convine them to build the list. Some songs are easy to add.....

"When I take a stroll down Jackass Lane it is usually to see someone that is already there" Mrs. Brown
Link to comment
Share on other sites

This cracks me up to no end, because it confirms how the band sees me: I have to book the gigs, take care of all PR and whatever they don't like, but when it comes to any decision in which they LIKE to get a say - and the worst part is that for anything that concerns the set list, I always try to discuss at the end of the rehearsal what we'll learn for the week after, and let them make suggestions - they won't listen to me or get all passive-agressive and simply not learn the tunes.

Pardon me for being blunt David, but if they don't want to work toward learning new songs, then you're at an impasse. It sounds like most of them are content being a 'practice room' band and it seems to me like it is time to move on when the opportunity presents itself.

You want more than that man - stay friends with these guys, but go after what you want. You'll be happier. Life is short.

BTW, you can sell yourself better in person than thru an expensive demo.

 

Visit my band's new web site.

 

www.themojoroots.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I am 95% sure that I am playing my last show with my current band in February. I haven't auditioned for that other band that I am stoked about yet. I am initially meeting with the band leader to go over a few songs acoustically to see if we are on the same page musically. If we are, then we will schedule a full band audition. I don't know how I feel about that, but I am willing to do it. I don't even know if this is unusual or not.

 

I am ready to step up for my next project. I can't decide if I should leave the other one before I have a new gig.

 

I think it is time to move on regardless of what I have going on with the current band. The guitarist and I were going to try to start our own band, so I put an ad out for drummers and vocalists, told him about it, sent him the replies, texted him, called and left messages and have yet to hear back from him....it has been 2 weeks.

 

He is a problem with this band but it doesn't really matter as the drummer is still a prick.

 

I will throwdown with them one more time. If I leave, I am pretty sure the drummer and singer (married) will pack it up and no longer do it. I don't like that resting on my shoulders but I can't let that hold me back either.

How do you sign a computer screen?

 

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

That would be true, if we all, separately and together, had not talked to her about her needing to find her pitch and consistently hit it, and the singers in the band have all given her tips and prctice techniques to do so. She knows she has the problem, and maybe by singing more with others she'll improve, until then, this is the work-around. I hope she will improve, because when she is on, her voice sounds great.

 

As for not being heard, she still is, sopranos can cut through just about any level of amplification.

"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.

 

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

If I leave, I am pretty sure the drummer and singer (married) will pack it up and no longer do it. I don't like that resting on my shoulders but I can't let that hold me back either.

 

In the end, that really is not your problem. It is their choice to make, not yours. What if you stay with them, and they still decide to call it a day ? Will they go "Oh poor fingertalkin, we'll stay just for him" ? I don't think so ...

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

 

The Ross Brown Shirt World Tour

Link to comment
Share on other sites

That would be true, if we all, separately and together, had not talked to her about her needing to find her pitch and consistently hit it, and the singers in the band have all given her tips and prctice techniques to do so. She knows she has the problem, and maybe by singing more with others she'll improve, until then, this is the work-around. I hope she will improve, because when she is on, her voice sounds great.

 

As for not being heard, she still is, sopranos can cut through just about any level of amplification.

 

That's better then, at least being open about it and such. Seeing that just reminded me of a real bad experience. It's good the singers are trying to help her out.

 

Ok, sorry for the digression, not trying to hijack.

 

Good band mates are hard to come by. Actually, this afternoon I'm going to jam with a co-worker from my 'work' band and some buddies of his to see if we can get a blues-based Christian band off the ground. It's something they've been wanting to do for awhile, so hopefully it works out.

 

I have a good feeling about it so we'll see what happens. If it doesn't jel, then it doesn't.

 

The one thing that is in the back of my mind is my buddy's wife is going to be a part of it too, she's a great singer. Of course, having a husband/wife combo can bring a whole extra level of drama to the mix. Not that it can't work, but it can also complicate things more than it's worth. But, we'll see.

"Political language... is designed to make lies sound truthful and murder respectable, and to give an appearance of solidity to pure wind"- George Orwell
Link to comment
Share on other sites

1) - Can't see having "committed couples" in a band. Leads to tears and hurt feelings.

 

2) - Leaving tone-deaf soprano off main - tears and hurt feelings. We can embarass someone in front of hundreds by shutting them off, but we cant look 'em in the eye and tell them they ain't got it. Unless they are compleletly stupid, someone is going to tell them and they'll find out.

 

Project B - started out great! Aggressive list of song to make into a set list, vaired musical genres, some originals. From early September to mid October we put 24/26 songs up. Nothing new since. We've rehersed once since November - and the drummer had to leave early becuase he was filling in at another gig. Paralyzed by a lack of a lead guitar - still waiting on "one of his friends" to call him back.

 

Project B is taking off quite well, however.

 

 

 

Ph'nglui mglw'nafh Cthulhu R'lyeh wgah'nagl fhtagn

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I was fired in July from my last band. Have not even auditioned for another since. We were all in our 40's except for the guitar player who was a very mature kid in his 20's.

 

We all discussed how many times we wanted to play out right from the beginning and we limited it to 2-3 times. The leader who was our lead singer chicky poo started booking us every single weekend then wanted to bump it up to 6 times a month. Simply not for me so I vocalized that. I committed to play everything that she booked but wanted her to check with me before she booked any more. A week after I stated my position, I was fired by her and the drummer. The guitarist was so PO'd that they did that to me he quit. That band has yet to play a single job since the day I was booted.

 

Should have left well enough alone

 

I think that the singer and drummer got caught up in the "wow, we are getting ourselves booked everywhere!" mode and wanted more than the rest of us.

 

As always, even when you communicate from the beginning, it does not mean that things won't change. Even later in life.

"The more I learn, the more I realize how much I don't know" by Me
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Oh yeah, they fired me and thought they could get someone to fill in the rest of the shows they had booked. Did not work out and they ended up cancelling the shows. In a sick way I got some satisfaction from that.
"The more I learn, the more I realize how much I don't know" by Me
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Minor beefs, but here we go...

 

The original bass player in our band was the BL. He left on good terms because he was trying to save his marriage (which was not saved) and I took things over.

 

The Bass player we ended up hiring was not the best we auditioned, but was good and he was good friends with the drummer. Our drummer REALLY wanted him and it would probably cause problems if we didn't hire him. (this was 2-1/2 yrs ago, BTW).

 

After several rough shows, I got on him a bit about that he needs to spend more time practicing because we can't be having shows like that (Saturdays were OK, Fridays were almost a trainwreck - So I figured he was familiar with them after friday, and maybe he should rehearse on Thursday so Friday was like saturday, Right?). Well he cried to the drummer who called me. So I laid off him a bit - I probably shouldn't have, because some of the rough spots exist to this day, only now it's getting on the drummer's nerves.

 

Bass Player Pros: Technically good player, Great Personality, Knows everyone in the Biz, brings out lots of people, socializes with the crowd, gets people on the email list, etc.

Cons: Makes an aweful lot of mistakes - not that he Can't play it, I think he's just not focussed. Can't sing like I was lead to believe he could - I mean he can sing, but not while playing the bass, which defeats the purpose. He's singing about 5 songs, usually 2-3 in one night. Our old bass player sang about 14 and sang backups on a lot more - so we've had to pick up those vocal parts. Makes it rough when someone's sick - we'd like to have close to an even distribution between the 4 of us that sing.

 

So the drummer and bass player have been getting into it more and more often. The Drummer is NOT an easy guy to get a long with by any stretch, but he has valid points of contention.

 

To complicate matters, the original bass player has made it clear that if there is ever an opening, he would be eager to come back (not as BL, just bass player).

 

The thing is, it wouldn't be fair to fire the current bass player to get the old one back. He relies on this income (which is substantial for a cover band), and he's playing the same way he has since I let up in the beginning. He's reliable, etc. But I think our drummer is just looking for reasons at this point.

 

The thing that bothers me personally most about him is that he's always complaining about his IEM mix. Everyone has their own mix and is in charge of it. Everyone takes care of their own mix with no issues. He still, after 2-1/2 years, regularly complains and has me re-eq'ing his bass in his mix and playing with it. We've tried to teach him how to do it himself, but it just seems like a lost cause.

 

Dan

 

Acoustic/Electric stringed instruments ranging from 4 to 230 strings, hammered, picked, fingered, slapped, and plucked. Analog and Digital Electronic instruments, reeds, and throat/mouth.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I recently took a hiatus from a church band. The problem was not the band really - they are talented beginners, except for the bass player, who HAS gotten a little better, although he still doesn't hear things like modulations and the like. It was mostly that the pastors couldn't let us know which tunes we were going to play in time to run through them before service, to make sure we were in the same key and tempo - stuff like that. (A singer might tell the piano player the song was going to be in a different key but not me, or vice versa.) And they would sometimes call tunes we rehearsed once 6 months ago which I had completely forgotten, but could pick up quickly if we had a short run-through.

 

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I realised last night what my course of action should be, namely imitation of their behaviour. That comes down to simply this: do nothing. I will not book any gigs, I will not suggest any songs, I will do nothing but play bass. Provided I will bother to actually learn any parts for suggestions of theirs.

 

Seriously, I have been asking for 2 weeks now to learn one Elvis tune (at the guitarist's suggestion, I don't even like the tune) and someone *cough*singer*cough* didn't learn it - again. Yet at the same time he suggested at rehearsal that we play this Mike Ness song which he likes. Guess what new song we worked on yesterday ?

 

So I'm not going to bother anymore. They want to treat this band like it's a weekly poker game ? Fine by me. I can hone my upright skills with them and in the meantime I will work on getting an actual band together, learn tunes that I want to learn at home (as opposed to their suggestions which they themselves don't bother to learn) and put up my pokerface.

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

 

The Ross Brown Shirt World Tour

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Need a lead guitar in Project A.

Need a Vox and guitar in Project B.

CL add nets three guitars and a vox.

One guitar and the vox flake as soon as set up auditions. One is from a band that previously fired me. I think the guy is trolling.

 

Musicians suck.

 

Ph'nglui mglw'nafh Cthulhu R'lyeh wgah'nagl fhtagn

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I realised last night what my course of action should be, namely imitation of their behaviour. That comes down to simply this: do nothing. I will not book any gigs, I will not suggest any songs, I will do nothing but play bass. Provided I will bother to actually learn any parts for suggestions of theirs.

 

Seriously, I have been asking for 2 weeks now to learn one Elvis tune (at the guitarist's suggestion, I don't even like the tune) and someone *cough*singer*cough* didn't learn it - again. Yet at the same time he suggested at rehearsal that we play this Mike Ness song which he likes. Guess what new song we worked on yesterday ?

 

So I'm not going to bother anymore. They want to treat this band like it's a weekly poker game ? Fine by me. I can hone my upright skills with them and in the meantime I will work on getting an actual band together, learn tunes that I want to learn at home (as opposed to their suggestions which they themselves don't bother to learn) and put up my pokerface.

 

I would not stand for any of that. I would be livid. Ditch the singer, let the guitar player know that they are Dime a Dozedn and if he doesn't fall in line he's easily replaced. Audition singers. You should be able to find somebody pretty easily. It's not like he's gotta sing U2 or Journey or something (no offense - I really like the stuff you guys do, but the vocals aren't the challenging part, in fact, the Bass is probably some of the coolest parts). Just take charge and whip these guys into shape. Either they'll fall into place or things will quickly fall to pieces and you won't have to worry about it anymore.

Dan

 

Acoustic/Electric stringed instruments ranging from 4 to 230 strings, hammered, picked, fingered, slapped, and plucked. Analog and Digital Electronic instruments, reeds, and throat/mouth.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I would not stand for any of that. I would be livid.

 

Frankly, I feel like I have tried enough times to get them to actually work. I have produced argument upon argument (and our lack of gigs should be enough argument as it is) but they don't want to see it my way. I believe it's Ross who said people won't change because you want them to. Well, I agree.

 

Either they'll fall into place or things will quickly fall to pieces and you won't have to worry about it anymore.

 

This is what will probably happen soon enough as is. Our singer wants to be the alpha male? Fine by me. I'll gladly let him. It'll start bugging the guitarist soon enough that we only play songs the singer picks. And if it doesn't, I still don't care. I'll play my upright to the best of my abilities and improve my skills, and won't worry about booking gigs or studio's or whatever. If they ask, I'll just give them our singer's favourite line which I get every time I ask if he managed to at least listen to a tune we collectively agreed on:

 

"I really haven't had time for that."

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

 

The Ross Brown Shirt World Tour

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Archived

This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

×
×
  • Create New...