COVER BANDS: Does you band rehearse or homework/shed then gig?

Discussion in 'The Sound Hound Lounge' started by Baminated, Jan 16, 2015.

  1. Baminated

    Baminated Member

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    Curious as to how many bands are gigging, playing at least one new tune a month or more live at gigs , and who are building repertoire steadily by either rehearsal or home shedding then gig.

    For the bands that rehearse 2-5 times a month, how much $ are you guys making a man?
     
    Last edited: Jan 17, 2015
  2. lp_bruce

    lp_bruce Member

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    For the two bands I play in that are pretty active, we practice each week. One is an originals band and use that time to work on new songs or freshen old ones. The other is an acoustic trio (mostly covers) and we use that time to have a few beers, laugh a lot, and learn new songs (and occasionally write them). I'm friends with everyone I play with and enjoy rehearsals.

    I play in a third (cover) band but we only play about 2-4 times a year and only rehearse once or twice before a show.

    Peace,
     
  3. 9-Pin

    9-Pin Member

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    Well, my current band hasn't had a gig yet, but we practice weekly. If we can get gigs fairly regularly, say 2xs a month, we may cut back. Since I've moved to VA, we have to pay for rehearsal space.

    In my last band, we still practiced once a week, but if we had 3 or 4 gigs kind of stacked up, we'd cut back on practices a little. Especially if we weren't adding new songs in-between gigs.
     
  4. phazersonstun

    phazersonstun Member

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    I gig 5-6 times a month between 2 cover bands.
    Neither one rehearse at all.
    I get sent a list of tunes, learn them and show up at the gig and play them.

    I prefer it that way when I know everyone else will do the home work and show up prepared.
     
  5. RCM78

    RCM78 Member

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    My previous band was fairly busy. 4-6 gigs a month and weekly rehearsal.

    The new band is just getting going so our schedule is light but we are rehearsing once a week.

    New songs are worked up each week. List goes out on Tuesday, and everyone is expected to have their **** together at rehearsal on Monday...
     
  6. jrjones

    jrjones Member

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    Practice is learning the song at home. Rehearsal is putting together and polishing what you learned at home to make it sound like a band, performing is executing what you rehearsed live. That's the other everytime. New song is decided on, everyone learns it at home, we put it together in rehearsal (rehearsal is always focused on a gig - no unnecessary rehearsals).
     
  7. stevel

    stevel Member

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    OK, diatribe.

    The GOOD bands I've been in, that make lots of money -i.e. the PRO bands, never rehearse.

    The band leader says "we're playing X at the next gig".

    That translates in Pro speak as, "learn X by the next gig".

    As a general, general rule, the more a band wants to rehearse, the crappier they are. Primarily, it's because people don't learn the tunes, and having rehearsals enables them to not do their homework and attempt to learn them at the rehearsal.

    If I see a CL ad that says "we practice once a week" I know they suck and they're not going anywhere.

    I subbed in a band. Learned their entire set in a week (not perfect, but giggable). I showed (they insisted in having one rehearsal because the lead singer was nervous not having played with me before). I knew the material better than the other members who had been playing it for months.

    I subbed for a prog rock band playing Rush, ELO, Focus, Kansas, Boston, Styx, Pink Floyd, Zeppelin, etc. Did I mention Rush? Again, a week to prepare. Walked in and played that gig with no rehearsal, never having played with them before. Was it perfect? No? Were there mistakes? Yes. Did I get them through the gig? Yes. Did they like me? Well, they hired me and I'm still playing with them.

    But here's the catch to that: Once me and another new member learned their set, they decided to learn some new material.

    There's always some member(s) (including myself admittedly) who don't learn the tunes for rehearsal. It doesn't help they they send a text out the night before saying "we're going to rehearse this song we've never talked about before so have it ready".

    When I first joined the band I thought it was amazing these guys could pull of this material. Truth is, they've played it for 6 years and as new members come on board they learn the set and tunes get added and dropped, but it's all from a stable of songs that the core members know. Now that we're learning songs that are new to everyone, or that they didn't already know for years, it's turned into every other 13 year old kid garage band "let's learn this for next week" and then no one shows with the material down.

    And now they want to practice every week (with no clear goals in mind).

    A band I started wanted to rehearse every week. Again, they're not pros. They want to use band practice as the time to learn the song. And it's frickin Louie Louie.

    We tried for 6 months to play some song and the drummer could never get it right.

    But what they didn't understand (as a lot of musicians don't) is, it's not enough to simply read the lyrics off a sheet of paper that has the chords (usually wrong) on it. You have to play the actual parts, and the arrangement correctly. This was a tribute style band and that needed to happen.

    IMHO, pros go home and learn the material, and show up to re-hear it - check for any anomalies, and work out kinks. Sometimes you have to wait to get together to decide who's going to take which vocal part or guitar part, etc. But once you iron out that stuff, you go home, fix it, and re-hear it.

    Most popular music is stupidly simple. If you can't gig it after, I'll be generous, 3 rehearsals, then either you don't need to be gigging it, it's too hard for your band, or you need to learn to play.

    IOW, no amount of continuing to play a song wrong at "band practice" is going to make it right or any better.

    My dream band would be to have a set and be gigging (regularly enough to keep the existing set polished), then pick 1 new song every 2 weeks, and have that learned and play 1 rehearsal, checking the song for any issues, and then put in the set.

    But I can't find players with that kind of work ethic.

    I've had better luck stepping into an existing band that has put a set together and has been gigging a while. It may take them a year to get to that point, but once they're there I can work up their set in, let's be generous, a month in order to be at the same level (or better) than they are with the material.

    But it's a waste of my time to go to a rehearsal every week when I know the tune and one or more other members don't. Once in a while I have a problem and can't get the material down in time, but more often than not, it's one or the other members.

    Now, a good band with direction, and rehearsals that actually do something positive for the band, I'm OK with that.

    But if you think we need to get together every week for a year before we can play Mustang Sally well enough to gig it, that's not for me. I'll play it exactly like the record, or any version you choose, or do an amalgam improvisational version of it. But it ain't rocket science. Follow the changes, learn the riffs if you're doing it that way, and it's done.
     
  8. lp_bruce

    lp_bruce Member

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    Wow... you sound like a lot of fun to play with.

    Peace,
     
  9. modulusman

    modulusman Member

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    I play in 2 bands. One has never had a rehearsal. The other hasn't since last spring when we learned some new songs for our busy schedule in the summer.
     
  10. DrSax

    DrSax Member

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    Absolutely he does. Wish he were in my town and could play drums, sing, bass at the same time.
     
  11. Lucidology

    Lucidology Member

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    Just homework ... go to the gig with a "Let's see how it goes positive attitude"...
    Makes for a lot of smiles and high energy ... sort of a 'trial by fire' situation ...
    Great Fun!! Even uplifting to a degree ...
     
  12. grill

    grill Member

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    listen to the song, that's it.

    go from there.
     
  13. HoboMan

    HoboMan Silver Supporting Member

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    I'm currently in two cover bands.
    One used to rehearse a lot but the lack of learning new material made rehearsal a waste of my time.
    Now we just gig a couple of times a month.

    My other band hardly ever rehearses and when we do it's just to work on new songs that we've all learned on our own.
    That band gigs once or twice a month.
     
  14. georgestrings

    georgestrings Senior Member

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    My current cover band maybe rehearses 4 or 5 times a year, but averages 8 to 10 gigs per month...


    - georgestrings
     
  15. Baminated

    Baminated Member

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    No intention to be an ass, but the better the musicians, band sound, and pay which scales from no less than $150 a man to $300 & even 5-600 (not New Years), those bands get delegated a song list, do homework , then crush it live when it really counts
     
  16. marco polo

    marco polo Member

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    I,m very fortunate to be involved in 4 different projects right now. Three duos and one trio keep me busy. Try and practice at least 4 times a month or so when we are not gigging.
    All covers as this what our clientele wants.Nothing fancy.
     
  17. M@tt C

    M@tt C Supporting Member

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    We cover a pretty wide range of stuff (rock/ party rock) and usually practice weekly with a goal to add 4-5 new songs before the next gig (which is usually about once a month). We learn the material at home on our own, then put it together at practice and see if it sticks.

    Since we're a trio that last part is critical- sometimes that means re- figuring out parts to allow the song to work. Generally after one rehearsal we have things down pretty well.

    We have rolled into gigs and done new material on the fly when we've had a busier gig schedule (which can be fun), but we much prefer to have the songs polished up a bit before we throw it out to the public.
     
  18. Baminated

    Baminated Member

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    For the bands that rehearse 2-5 times a month, how much $ are you guys making a man?
     
  19. Iceman63

    Iceman63 Member

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    My band partially disbanded, then reformed with different drummer, keys and bass. So were trying to polish up for our first gig together in late Feb.
    The plan was to practice once or twice a week for a little while. Nor really working out. The drummer and key player don't do their homework, so we're not moving along as I'd like. Frustrating.
     
  20. StompBoxBlues

    StompBoxBlues Member

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    I've never understood the guys that say "learn it all at home, meet up for the gig".

    A couple of reasons.

    - an awful lot of songs fade out. Trying to fade out live...maybe one or two songs if you can do it, but mainly need an ending and it should be tight.

    - songs with signature parts that aren't instruments in the band. Horn sections plying certain riffs, or other instruments...who takes what?

    - jam songs...with no fixed solo length..etc. how to signal when to go back into the verse.

    - changing songs if not doing it exactly like the record.

    - working together, levels, etc.

    We do once a week rehearsals, but after the initial time together could be fine with twice a month, but I can very much tell that it helps and that we are tighter than we were.

    I'm a happy amateur, but I've been in bands since the mid seventies so I'm not a newbie. In rehearsal we do shorten some things we know we have down cold, but we work out our own versions of some songs, other songs that are om er faithful to the original we still work out parts, interplay, endings...

    But I'm not making my living at it. And also, have noticed in jams with people I haven't played with, it goes pretty well just if people all kinda know the song.

    It's just my bands way, we like playing together and aren't doing it for a living.
     

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