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Dealing with compliments


picker

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Last night I worked the usual Wednesday night jam I help host. It was a slow night, weather being a bit raw, so I ended up playing quite a bit.

 

There was a couple who came to listen. During a break, I went over the the bar where they were sitting, to get a refill on my club soda. The two of them started taking to me, and were extremely complimentary abut my singing and playing. I never really know what to say to folks who say stuff like that to me, except "Thank you, that's very nice of you to say", or "thanks, it's always better to hear that than 'Hey, you suck!'"

 

It would have been a fairly typical sort of occurrence, but then the de-facto leader of the band walked up with the bass player. The guy looked at them and said, "Not to run you guys down or anything, but you should be glad this guy let's you play music with him."

 

I'm pretty sure my jaw dropped. I know I was surprised to the point of shock. I think the other guys took it in stride, or at least I hope so. When I came out of my shock, I was at pains to explain it was a team effort, and that an old fart like me is fortunate to being playing with a group players as good as they are, which is totally the truth.

 

I'm worried that it might cause problems in the band. Has anyone else had to deal with this kind of thing before?

Always remember that you are unique. Just like everyone else.

 

 

 

 

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Yeah, it's not like you had any control over that guy saying that! He was just trying to find a way to put his admiration for your playing, and perhaps overreached a bit. Tell the other guys in your band about your concerns for their feelings here, and it'll all be alright- they'll likely laugh and reassure you that it's no big deal.

 

I've said "Thank you, that's very nice of you to say" a LOT this past Summer and Fall, myself; sometimes when people gush just a bit TOO much, or pay compliments that are obviously, embarrassingly way over-the-top exaggerated, it CAN be awkward and hard to know what to say!

 

I'll tell you this- anytime I see another band, especially if they're playing the same place and time that I am- like one of us is opening, or we're on a multi-band line-up for a benefit, etc.- I make a point of whoopin' it up and bellowing out "Rock 'n' ROLL!!" and the like when they're playing, and complimenting them and chatting 'em up when the opportunity arises. We're all in this together. :cool:

Ask yourself- What Would Ren and Stimpy Do?

 

~ Caevan James-Michael Miller-O'Shite ~

_ ___ _ Leprechaun, Esquire _ ___ _

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Has anyone else had to deal with this kind of thing before?

 

A few times, after mixing a concert on tour, in a concert hall I've never been in before, when I'm packing up at the mixer, an audience person will come up to me, in full earshot of the house engineer & say it's the best it has ever sounded there, as in it usually sucks, meaning the house guy, the guy standing right there, sucks. It's pretty damn awkward. I thank them & say how glad I am that they enjoyed the concert, thanks for supporting live music, etc.

Scott Fraser
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Awkward is the word. Especially because it just wasn't true. I made a ton of mistakes that night. I have always heard that on nights when you suck, people rave about your playing, and on nights when you can't make a mistake if you try, nobody says anything. Audience response can be a very unreliable barometer to the quality of your performance.

Always remember that you are unique. Just like everyone else.

 

 

 

 

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No pro would let an inebrated patrons comments get to him/her. Blowing away the house guitarist is sometimes hard not to do. People that see me play for the first time usually react as if it's something they haven't seen before. Dunno why that is, but the comments have ranged from: "Dude! Ya made me get dirt on my tongue!" to "How MANY fingers do you have?" to "You're not human!" to "You should play slower!" to "Dude, that was some great bass playin'" (I don't own a bass)....it's all what they, in their state, perceive. I always play up the people on stage with me, and the joint effort involved. I never want to see other players disrespected. Rob Rose is a stunning player, and at his jam comparisons were inevitable.....it's usually the booze talkin'!
Never a DUH! moment! Well, almost never. OK, OK! Sometimes never!
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I think we've all been congratulated after a night of mistakes by drunken audience members... I've boiled everything down to "You're never as good or as bad as anyone says you are." It's a nice way of keeping an even keel. It can also be used to diffuse things internally with the band if necessary.
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I think you handled it with class, Mike.

If your band members say anything, you can just say, "hey, I wouldn't be playing with you if I thought you sucked."

 

I've rarely been in situations where I was the featured performer, and usually in churches where the audience was not drunk (at least not AT THAT MOMENT, LOL... who knows what they do on Saturday night??) So I haven't had to deal with people whose minds are stupified to one degree or another.

 

Once in a while people tell me that they like my playing, but no one is leading me to believe I'm a legend in my own time, LOL. Who wants to hear that BS anyway, if it's not true!

 

 

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The right answer is, "Thanks, but I wouldn't be up there without these guys." Ya gotta stand up for your bandmates.

 

That seems to be the best reply, though I wouldn't know anything about the situation. Either that or, "Well, without these guys' energy and inspiration, I wouldn't sound half as good as you think I did. A lot of credit goes to them." Yeah, you gotta stand up for the bandmates.

Whitefang

I started out with NOTHING...and I still have most of it left!
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If the audience was tippin, I liked what they had to say, if it was just words, it was in one ear and out the other.

 

I found out early the audience did not have a clue musically, they just like what they like, they have no appreciation for advanced musical ideas, If it sounds like the recording they like it, if you stray they don't like it.

 

We played Sunshine Of Your love in 9/8 one time as a joke. This drunk walked up and said to me man you guys rock, but you made the same mistake every time. Meaning the extra beat. I just laughed and told him "we were just joking man, we meant to do that" After that I knew they did not have much insider knowledge and never listened to what they had to say much after that.

 

But if they was tippin, I liked what they had to say...... :thu:

 

I have not played out since the early 70's, so I am not much of a pro. I was they guy who talked to the audience from the stage, so I got us plenty of tips, however I never had the patience to play in bars so I never worked with my music, I made my living in construction, I made music for fun.

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I just realized the parallel to this is playing on a sports team. You never want to be the best guy on the team...

 

If you *think* you're the best guy on the team...you aren't. ;)

 

If you *think* you're the worst guy on the team...you aren't. ;)

 

If somebody else says you're the best guy on the team - and you know you aren't - then you know you have a good team.

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