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Semi-OT - how would you react to this?


Griffinator

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Seriously, if you got the following message from the band leader (shortly after an argument in rehearsal) - how would you react?

 

BTW - you really, really need to communicate with me when you have concerns about what direction we're going with the music. I have no desire to try and turn this into an 80's band. I only posted up those videos to make a point about how professional and ass-tight that group was on stage - everything they were doing had a purpose, and the music was spot on. Reason I kept hammering on that particular band? Because of what they get paid compared to what the rest of the loser bands in that area make. I don't want to be like [local asshole bandleader], scrapping for shit gigs that pay barely enough to cover gas to and from. I want us to stand apart from the rest of the shitty bands in this scene. I want us to be such a potent act that people actually DO call us to book instead of us having to beg them.

 

Seriously, dude. I'm not into gimmick bullshit. I am into presenting a theme (fuck music/party music) and supporting that theme by finding really good shit from any "era" and knocking it out of the park, just to show those people in the crowd that we can play anything, at any time, and even if we're playing 5 shows in a row in their town, they need to be at every one of those shows, for fear they'll miss something epic if they're not.

 

In short, I want us to be in fucking demand. I want us making $1500+ a night. I want you to look at your day job like it's fucking chicken feed, because we're making fat-ass bank every time we play.

 

How that happens? Well, first thing we have to get straight is that there aren't any ulterior motives, that we're all after the same prize, and when I reach out there and grab a handful of songs and go "this is shit we can do that showcases our singer and gets asses shaking on the floor", then you need to trust me enough to believe that this is the ONLY reason I'm picking those songs. If everyone hates the song, fine, everyone hates the song. I don't think you completely realize that I rejected most of the "legendary" 80's glam shit because I KNOW everyone in the band (myself included) would hate it.

 

Anyway, back on point... You need to talk to me when you have concerns instead of waiting until frustration boils over and shit blows up. We don't have time for blowups anymore - we got one more practice to beat down on 10 songs, then we got 3 more to turn every song on our list to unconscious, INCLUDING yours and my backup vocals. It's game time, bro, and we need to be on the same page, seriously.

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Depends on what the argument was about.

 

I sent those videos to a band leader as well and did not get that kind of reaction.

 

Other way around. ;)

 

I am the band leader in this situation. The member in question took me sending those videos (and some associated info) as an indication that I was trying to make an 80's band out of this project, and there was a blowup over a particular song that he particularly hated.

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I think that letter would only inflame the situation. It's not very diplomatic, even though I understand what you are saying.

 

We disagree about what songs to play and one of the band members pouts if songs he chooses don't get played. I get annoyed when we learn a song and then drop it after playing it once.

 

I don't hate particular songs. A song never did anything to me. It's people who are the problem. ;)

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I agree with Jeremy.

 

I think the sentiment is right, but I, personally, would be offended by the manner in which it is stated - maybe that's just me.

 

Maybe re-state exactly the same sentiments in a rather less aggressive manner?

 

G.

"When the power of love overcomes the love of power the World will know Peace": Jimi Hendrix

http://www.soundclick.com/bands/default.cfm?bandID=738517&content=music

The Geoff - blame Caevan!!!

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Sounds pretty straight ahead to me. I'd do the same thing and I'd appreciate someone being so forthright to me. At least it shows you know what you want, what is expcted and that you're willing to work hard to get it.

 

Too many people these daysget their drawers in a twist over the way this or that is said. It's a generation of wuss asses.

 

The only thing I'd add is that a follow up call would show your sincerity. If you're on the same page, he'd apprciate it and extend himself. If he doesn;t, he's going to be trouble down the road and you might as well cut him loose sooner than later.

 

And by the way, complaining about a song is childish and amateurish. There's an expression in the industry -- PLAY THE GIG. That means whatever it takes, you do. Or stay home.

JAZZ UN-STANDARDS http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6vE4FoJ4Cr4&feature=related

 

DON'T FEAR...THE REVERB! 60's Instrumentals with MORE BASS!

 

 

 

 

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One: I admire the passion.

Two: Probably would have waited a day or two until that passion cooled off a bit and this might have been expressed a little more calmly--and any reaction should probably be equally cool. Nothing to be gained by flaming each other.

Three: best to have these sorts of discussions in person.

Four: what is "fuck music?"

"Everyone wants to change the world, but no one thinks of changing themselves." Leo Tolstoy
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Personally, I think every band needs to have a frank discussion pretty early in about the goals of the band as a whole. If I'm reading it right, you're saying that while you don't don't want to be rock stars, you do want to be a band worth paying to see, and get paid well for being seen. Sound fair to me.

 

Some people can take the idea you are trying to communicate and disregard the tone, or disregard the words that might offend them, but only you know if you can express yourself to that person and let the message get through despite the tone or the words.

 

Tact is the ability to tell someone to go to hell, and make them look forward to the trip. ;)

 

 

"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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One: I admire the passion.

 

I do, too.

 

But the problem is that when a person reads en e-mail they bring with it their emotional state at the time. A heart to heart (oh, how sweet!) phone call would have better suited the purpose since you can read his/her emotions better to put out the fires before they explode into huge nastyness.

 

Another thing about e-mail: few people make it through the first three sentences. Like, you're probably not even reading this right now. Honest. For example, I e-mailed the guy installing my new pool liner and asked him to add to the bill a big bucket of granule chlorine. His reply was, "Do you want 3" tab, 1" tabs, or broadcast granule?" So again, a phone call would have been better.

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

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I have written simliar diatribes. Then once I heard the band talking about "one of my long e mails"... lesson learned. I plan to show the videos to my band too. It is not about the music, it is about the show. Agreed.

 

E mail is good sometimes. The singer in my previous band had a tendancy to talk over everyone that tried to express an idea. It was his way of controling the situation. It made it very difficult to comunicate. i would just wait and try again, to the point of ridiculous sometimes... E mail could help with this. Long e mails are boring, no matter what the subject.

"When I take a stroll down Jackass Lane it is usually to see someone that is already there" Mrs. Brown
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One: I admire the passion.

Two: Probably would have waited a day or two until that passion cooled off a bit and this might have been expressed a little more calmly--and any reaction should probably be equally cool. Nothing to be gained by flaming each other.

Three: best to have these sorts of discussions in person.

Four: what is "fuck music?"

 

This letter was sent a couple days later, after everything had cooled off and said member had talked to the drummer about half a dozen things that never came up in the actual argument (which, BTW, ended peacefully).

 

Oh - and "fuck music" is songs people fuck to. In a bar setting, it's songs that get the ladies up bumping and grinding.

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Great sentiment.

Bad presentation.

 

Tenstrum

 

"Paranoid? Probably. But just because you're paranoid doesn't mean there isn't an invisible demon about to eat your face."

Harry Dresden, Storm Front

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I think if you said the exact same stuff in person (with an accompanying "let's DO this, man" attitude), it'd be fine... because that'd give the dude a chance to chime in that he is (or isn't) on the same page. Chances are good that he is, but he had a weird hair in his butthole during the first interaction.

 

Sent as an e-mail, this doesn't come off so well--it comes off as kind of obnoxious (and believe me, I know obnoxiousness personally), especially if the dude is already tired of the discussion/argument.

 

I think of band member e-mailing as a good way to handle scheduling, send around MP3s or video links and clear up details for load-in times and directions, etc. I don't, however, like them for discussing more in-depth band matters of this nature because points can be misinterpreted or muddled and take up a lot of time with back-and-forth messaging when a simple 10-minute conversation could probably clear things up without the hassle. Issues that aren't a big deal can suddenly turn into drama. Direct conversation always seems to be the simplest way to resolve this kind of thing.

 

As far as what you're saying goes, I've never had to be told to get on the same page as everyone else and take things more seriously--I've always been the one trying to manage a bunch of space-case musicians. I believe other folks refer to this process as "herding cats."

\m/

Erik

"To fight and conquer in all your battles is not supreme excellence; supreme excellence consists of breaking the enemy's resistance without fighting."

--Sun Tzu

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If this were on CL, I'd dismiss it as "one of those" ads.

 

If it were sent TO me, I'd think I was getting fired.

 

If it were sent BY me, I'd think that I had missed the 4:30 PM meds.

 

Are you looking for honesty or support? I think you've already reached your conclusion. Deed is done, our opinion really doesn't much matter at this point.

 

robb. - try tying pomplamoose onto the thread. that would get it moderated pretty quick.

 

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

 

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robb. - try tying pomplamoose onto the thread. that would get it moderated pretty quick.

 

You're trying to tie pomplamoose onto the thread.

"Tours widely in the southwestern tip of Kentucky"
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If this were on CL, I'd dismiss it as "one of those" ads.

 

If it were sent TO me, I'd think I was getting fired.

 

If it were sent BY me, I'd think that I had missed the 4:30 PM meds.

 

Are you looking for honesty or support? I think you've already reached your conclusion. Deed is done, our opinion really doesn't much matter at this point.

 

robb. - try tying pomplamoose onto the thread. that would get it moderated pretty quick.

 

I was looking for honesty, and it seems the general consensus is that it wasn't a very diplomatic way of delivering the message.

 

Call it a learning experience for future reference. Honestly, this guy is right on the edge of being fired anyway, if for no other reason than I'm tired of teaching him his parts.

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Then, by all means, fire his a$$.

 

You obviously have a set vision and purpose. He obviously is not part of it. If you have a band member that evokes that kind of reaction (we just fired a guitar under similar circumstances and it wasn't nearly as emotional), then it can only be a detriment.

 

That said, a phone call results in "he said". An email can be printed out and shared. It is a tad more damning.

 

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

 

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I guess I ran the band for about 4 years - I just handed it over to the guitar player and singer who are splitting duties. It was getting to the point where I was having more and more conflicts with a couple of the band members and things were getting pretty ugly. Since handing it over, I get along with them again (of course the guitar player gets stressed now, but it comes with the territory).

 

I had a pretty good run despite some pretty strong personalities because I always tried to be very diplomatic. When things needed to be said, I always said them in private, usually over the phone, early in the week (like a Monday) to give it time to blow over before the next gig, and always tried to approach it in a non threatening way. It takes a hell of a lot of patience, but keeping the peace among band members while also making sure everybody was pulling their weight and not doing anything stupid, is absolutely necessary.

 

With all the shit I was going through with the divorce and some other stuff, along with some ongoing personal issues with a couple band members, I just got to the point where I was stressed out and didn't have the patience for it anymore. I was snapping and blowing up at guys instead of handling it in a controlled manner, like I used to. That's when it's time to hang it up.

 

I always thought of it through the looking glass of my day job. How would a manager interact with a subordinate in a similar situation within the office environment? That's the professional way to handle it. Just because it's a band doesn't make it any different - it's still a business.

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.

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Then, by all means, fire his a$$.

 

You obviously have a set vision and purpose. He obviously is not part of it. If you have a band member that evokes that kind of reaction (we just fired a guitar under similar circumstances and it wasn't nearly as emotional), then it can only be a detriment.

 

That said, a phone call results in "he said". An email can be printed out and shared. It is a tad more damning.

 

Well, see, that was the point - it was kind of me reading him the riot act. I don't mind carrying one member for a while, as they get on their feet. I don't mind a little friction regarding song selection. I do mind a combination of both those things piled onto a passive-aggressive attempt to replace me as band leader when it's patently obvious to all involved that the band needs me to be the leader because I have more in the way of musical skills than anyone else in the band and the patience to work with people to bring them along faster than they'd get on their own (save the drummer, who has zero desire to try and lead)...

 

So, my patience was put to the test, and this was as diplomatic as I could be in order to avoid the unpleasant task of having to replace the guy 4 weeks before a show.

 

Granted, one might also say "better 4 weeks than 2" - and one would probably be right. I don't like firing people, especially ones who have a measure of passion about trying to get the band out there and playing. The kid's problem is, basically, that he's a kid, one with very limited musical vocabulary (seriously, he was born in 1986, and I swear he hasn't listened to any music created before he was in kindergarten...) and zero understanding of the fickle nature of bar crowds, particularly in this neck of the woods.

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I sort of sensed your frustration with him on the band photos thread.

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.

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I sort of sensed your frustration with him on the band photos thread.

 

Damn, was it that obvious? :D

 

Well, I thought he looked pretty cool in the pic, but your first comment was about him looking like he was angry at the world. I thought he actually looked kinda cool - but I don't have to deal with him.

 

From the pics, I would've focused on the drummer... but that's image, not playing, or attitude, or anything else - I've never met any of these guys.

 

But if your singer is single and interested in moving to St. Louis, you've got me contact info.

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.

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