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The strength to move foward and how to do it...........?


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The dying on the hill thread got me thinking of my own situation and trying to unpack the last ten years.  As a few of you guys know I had a band for just under ten years that had a huge following and a break up that affected so many people /business here in this part NYS. I got hurt most, lost my dad and my job also within a few months.  Anyway,  I am still asked all the time about the band at festivals and breweries.   I mentioned before the singer left and had a host of problems. It derailed an already unstable mix when we came back together after a 11/2 layoff last summer after COVID.  The other keyboard player's mother died last month and the funeral was on May 5h.  I saw the singer and guitarist who I started the band with and it was incredibly awkward.  I felt like I was seeing ex's at a funeral.  We were part of each other's lives for a long, long time. I saw the singer and told her how disappointed l I was with her and the trail of shit she left.  She and the guitarist wrote the songs, I was in between all of their problems also.  Then last week 3 other members and I got together.  The keyboard and bass player are fine, we get a long.  The guitarist I started the group with is out and I don't think it would be good working with him.  I finally realized that I had built a band on quicksand with everyone and a lot of my time was spent trying to keep it together for 10 years. There were road signs early on and I knew they were there.  Most of the time you are trying to hold on, get gigs, maintain the band, and the band eventually becomes larger than any one member.

 

Well now 8 months later some people that I respect have told me I should gather remaining members and also go out with new people.  I know and think it's a good idea but I would be essentially starting out with new personnel.  Part of the things I think about are; does lighting strike twice? , would it be the same?, Different?  Could we still draw a crowd?   At the time 10 years ago I got all the members pretty easily with only a small amount of attrition because I understood the long game with regards to the band.  I still have the infrastructure in place. I got a lawyer, trademarked the name and own the domain.  Those things are OK and I did it because I have so much invested.  Two members and I  decided we will go on with a new drummer. We had a rehearsal and it was OK but felt like I was outside myself looking in the whole time.  I worry about creating an unstable dynamic, I want a clean slate.  Sorry to ramble it's been kind of a bad 8 months and I am trying to figure out how to go on.

 

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"Danny, ci manchi a tutti. La E-Street Band non e' la stessa senza di te. Riposa in pace, fratello"

 

 

noblevibes.com

 

 

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@Outkaster, you're definitely in a tough spot.

 

First, I wouldn't play with any musician(s) who I suspect would be toxic.

 

Secondly, do not start a new band with the expectation of catching lightning in a bottle twice. That's a set up for disappointment.

 

Times have changed. Approach a new endeavor with an open mind.

 

Expand your rolodex. Find like-minded musicians who want to play the same music. Pick some songs to play. Schedule a rehearsal.

 

If the vibe feels right, go for it and see what happens. If the vibe isn't right for whatever reason, don't f8ck with it. 

 

IMO, KB players have more options than they sometimes realize. We really don't have to be beholden to vocalists and/or other instrumentalists. 

 

If you really want to play music again, either re-imagine the band in a way that works for you on several levels and/or become a mercenary musician and play wirh others. Good luck. 😎 

PD

 

"The greatest thing you'll ever learn, is just to love and be loved in return."--E. Ahbez "Nature Boy"

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That sounds rough, dude.

 

Sometimes taking a major hit, as you have had, is the opportunity to look around and survey the landscape, rather than trying to capture 'lightning in a bottle twice', as previously mentioned.

 

Speaking from my own experience, sometimes it's wise to appreciate when you've had a hot streak, and know when to leave the table. I had a full calendar from 2017-2019, feeling like my career had really hit its stride, and then Covid hit and I ended up moving back home in my thirties and feeling like a total loser. It forced me to look around and consider other options within the music realm, which has turned out to be more lucrative and less stressful than working like a crazy person on the 'gig treadmill' every night, much to my surprise. Every crisis is an opportunity, as they say.

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All the issues mentioned are not directly related, it’s just that these life changing events are packed together in that part of you where we store the stress of loss, grief and change.  
 

Enough time has passed. You’re able to talk about it like it’s the past and you’re definitely ready to play music again. 
 

Take what you learned from your  experiences but don’t carry the weight of them around like a ball and chain.  

Yamaha CP88, Roland VR-700, Crumar Mojo, rebuilt 1910 Chickering 5'2", Fender Rhodes MKI 88k, Casio PX-560

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Brother I feel for you. Take care of your mental and emotional health above all other things. I think that's not only is that good human advice, it's also good practical advice. 

 

On the personal side, the last time I had a monumental avalanche of losses and crosses, it took me the better part of 8 years to come out. But I'm a better person for it (while I would never wish that on a worst enemy), and you guys on this forum played a part in me getting to the other side of the river.

 

On the practical side, you're going to make better decisions in a positive frame of mind. You'll see more clearer about potential band members, business opportunities, intuition about others around you, and more. When you're exuding positive, good energy, quality people will see it and want to work with you. And it will be much easier for you to welcome the new normal - which I can guarantee will be significantly different than your prior success, one way or another. I do think you will be better served by embracing the new rather than trying to recreate the old - part of you already knows this, but I can certainly understand why "can lightning strike twice?" is in the back of your mind, given your context.

 

And finally, you'll have more to say musically when you're coming from a place of positive confidence.

 

Wishing you the very best on your journey, brother.

 

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Some great advice in this thread. I would simply counsel you not to try and recreate what you had, but to approach any future endeavo(u)r as a new opportunity.

 

Best of luck,

 

Mike.

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3 hours ago, stoken6 said:

Some great advice in this thread. I would simply counsel you not to...

 

And "not to overthink it" -- you could have some "analysis paralysis" going on.  It's OK to reflect on and learn from the past, but don't dwell on it.

 

Go with your gut & heart, and what the MUSIC IN YOU that wants to get out, tell you to do.

 

Old No7

Yamaha MODX6 ** Hammond SK Pro 73 ** Roland RD-88 ** Crumar Mojo Pedals ** Mackie Thump 12A (x2) ** Tascam DP-24SD

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Thanks everyone.  I was 44 when I started and had a good run especially in the early years as that's where I was always building things up.  It's hard not living in the past as the house I now own is near where we used to rehearse and I am still getting calls from people for shows. I still go to local festivals that I played and feel demoralized.  I understand about the analysis paralysis thing also. I guess with everything going on I am so shell shocked, and for the record I never thought I would be.  With all the compounding disappointment it's hard not to feel that way even when the stuff is unrelated as someone pointed out above.

"Danny, ci manchi a tutti. La E-Street Band non e' la stessa senza di te. Riposa in pace, fratello"

 

 

noblevibes.com

 

 

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Start meeting new players and create a viable network of stable individuals that are your friends. Trust is the only hard and fast requirement for friendship, in this case you are also seeking talent. That could take longer. 

 

Open mic nights are opening up in our area, if they are in yours then start going to them and seeing who's out there. Meet people, make friends. Some of them will not meet your musical standards, be friends and perhaps they will have better players in their network that you can meet. Do not allow friiendships to cloud your focus, you want tight, solid players who are reliable, only. 

 

Goal would be to put a 3 or 4 (max) piece band together with some interchangable members. If possible, find a substitute for your own position in the band too. That makes it easier to ensure that a performing unit will make all the gigs. EVERYBODY in the band should be able to sing harmonies at the least and better if they can take a lead vocal and know a few tunes. 

 

Since this will not be the band that you've registered a name for, get a new name and let the past dissolve into the ether. 

It took a chunk of my life to get here and I am still not sure where "here" is.
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Yes I have done some of that.  It only goes so far.  I have been doing some side work with other bands in different cities to keep me playing a little.

"Danny, ci manchi a tutti. La E-Street Band non e' la stessa senza di te. Riposa in pace, fratello"

 

 

noblevibes.com

 

 

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1 hour ago, Outkaster said:

Thanks everyone.  I was 44 when I started and had a good run especially in the early years as that's where I was always building things up.  It's hard not living in the past as the house I now own is near where we used to rehearse and I am still getting calls from people for shows.

 

Maybe it's because I made a living doing this for years, but when people called about gigs it was time to put something together. 

 

Now having said that, here's something else from my experience. Towards the end of my time in Seattle, I was in a band that lost it's female front. She was horribly undependable - sometimes showing up for half a night, sometimes not showing up at all. We thought there'd be no problem continuing. 

 

When word got out, we got calls from some rooms - "Is Deborah no longer with you? I'm going to have to rethink those dates let me get back to you..."

 

The band played on, but we did lose some gigs. But what we gained in return was our sanity, so all in all it was for the best. 

 

Now having said that, there's a regional band out of Portland that changed their female front last fall, and they haven't dropped a beat as far as I can tell. So it can be done.

 

If it were me, I'd probably put something together just for fun, and take a few low pressure gigs to see how it goes. Best of luck no matter what you decide 👍

 

 

 

 

 

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On 5/26/2022 at 6:55 PM, Outkaster said:

.... Two members and I  decided we will go on with a new drummer. We had a rehearsal and it was OK but felt like I was outside myself looking in the whole time.  I worry about creating an unstable dynamic, I want a clean slate....

Would the people who created the difficulties in the old band lineup still be there in the new band lineup?

My guess is that you know which band members in the old lineup were "contributing", and how much.

 

We had to get two new band members in our 7-piece covers band (we had our first gig with the new lineup on April 29).

I decided I wanted to change some of the things I was doing for this go-around.

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The two I would keep are the bass player and other keyboard player.  Three of us play with a guy in Buffalo sometimes in different line ups.  The drummer is Ok but I need some new blood to change the dynamic.  The guitarist doesn't want to do it and I think he wanted his originals to be played more than covers, sometimes they just didn't hold up, sometimes they did.  I was in a funny position as I kind of lost control of things as he and the singer wrote the songs.  I kind of would make suggestions and get fought on it, but my advice usually worked. Since I am not a song writer my talent is at arranging,  I won't put my self in that situation again because it sometime ended up me against them.

"Danny, ci manchi a tutti. La E-Street Band non e' la stessa senza di te. Riposa in pace, fratello"

 

 

noblevibes.com

 

 

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On 5/27/2022 at 11:17 AM, Bill H. said:

Maybe it's because I made a living doing this for years, but when people called about gigs it was time to put something together.

 

....

 

If it were me, I'd probably put something together just for fun, and take a few low pressure gigs to see how it goes. Best of luck no matter what you decide 👍

My head went to the same place when I read that. Say yes to the gig and work the rest out on the way. Maybe it will become something going forward, maybe not, but it will definitely steer the ship in the direction it needs to start going.

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I’m short on advice, but I hope you find yourself in a group with positive energy that nourishes your musical soul.

Chris

Main gear: Yamaha C7, Kronos 2 88, Moog Sub 37, Kurzweil PC2x, Pearl epro, Mac/Logic/AUs

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We will see. Seems to get harder as you get older.  You lose runway time...

"Danny, ci manchi a tutti. La E-Street Band non e' la stessa senza di te. Riposa in pace, fratello"

 

 

noblevibes.com

 

 

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Reminds me of dating.  After you get dumped you feel like something the cat dragged it, but you need to project positive energy and look forward with hope to the next situation.  It will feel more natural over time.  It's awkward, but necessary.  We're not perfect, they're not perfect.  As we get older the kinds of people we can personally tolerate and encourage to the best of their ability will hopefully broaden (ie we don't cause unnecessary angst as they're angsting), but there are hard lines too.  There will always be some level of shifting sand.  But it makes for good music...  Life is short.  If it's what you do, do it again.

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