"Creative Differences" and Band Break-ups......I get it!

markjsmith

Gold Supporting Member
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3,643
Ever see "That Thing You Do"? The drummer speeds up the song playing a way more interesting part and it's way better. Not saying that's your situation, just saying you need to be able to step back and be objective when players inevitably try and put their stamp on it (because they always will-especially if they are any good).

I did a session years ago with a guy who really didn't play guitar, but he had played guitar on his demos. He came up with parts that weren't really very good and they didn't serve the song well. EVERYONE involved knew this but him, and it was a struggle to get him to let me try other parts. Finally, he got a producer involved who "talked him off the ledge" about the guitar parts. I ended up keeping his parts on a couple songs that he absolutely wouldn't budge on, but the other songs benefitted greatly from reimagining the guitar parts. If you are hiring players and they are good, let them have some room to interpret things or they'll quit your band. OTOH if something is really bothering you bring it up! If you are dealing with guys that can't play the parts that is another story and you have to pick your battles. "Is it just on one song?" or "Is this guy consistently unable to play the parts being written?" There is a BG vocal part in a band that I play in that I just can't hear when performing the song (It's an odd part). I can do it in rehearsal and practicing on my own, but onstage and in the moment I can't hear the part in my head so I sing a different harmony. I always sing a part that works, just not the part the bandleader wants. I do nail all the other parts though!
 
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4,214
A band of democracy? The other members will put their own stamp on the tunes and will never play them exactly as you conceived it.

Deal with it.

Your own band of hired guns?

Fire the bum(s)!
 

gixxerrock

Member
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3,887
Really sucks as a player being forced to play some crappy amateur part exactly as written because that's what they heard in their head and they are so convinced of their own infallible genius they refuse to budge. From my observations, drummers hate it too.

On the other hand, if there is some give and take, or the discussion is in context of what serves the song better it can work out great.

It can be very liberating to just completely slave yourself to the songwriter's vision and execute that as best you can. Letting go can be a great way to break out of ruts and learn new things.
 

Flyin' Brian

Silver Supporting Member
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30,128
Condensed version:

When you write the words, the melody line, the chord changes, and the melody line for the solo part, which is not a solo per se but an instrumental interlude, for a song for the original band that you play in, you want the song played the way it was written.
......but need to be open to the concept that some slight (or significant) change to any of those parameters may take things in a totally different direction. That could be neither better nor worse, but just different.
 

2HBStrat

Member
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41,247
Ever see "That Thing You Do"? The drummer speeds up the song playing a way more interesting part and it's way better. Not saying that's your situation, just saying you need to be able to step back and be objective when players inevitably try and put their stamp on it (because they always will-especially if they are any good)......!
That's an interesting point. As you might recall, not only did that band fall apart, but the songwriter went on to a celebrated career with The Herdsman, the name he wanted originally instead of the Oneders, and presumably using his own original ideas, whereas the drummer became a music teacher.....
 

Sam Sherry

Gold Supporting Member
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1,115
When you write the words, the melody line, the chord changes, and the melody line for the solo part, which is not a solo per se but an instrumental interlude, for a song for the original band that you play in, you want the song played the way it was written.
I trust the people in our band to make my music sound much more interesting, refined and just plain BETTER than I ever imagined it.

They do the same thing too.
 

markjsmith

Gold Supporting Member
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3,643
That's an interesting point. As you might recall, not only did that band fall apart, but the songwriter went on to a celebrated career with The Herdsman, the name he wanted originally instead of the Oneders, and presumably using his own original ideas, whereas the drummer became a music teacher.....
The song sucked without that drum part. He would have never found that success (in the movie) without the drum part!
 

2HBStrat

Member
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41,247
2HB: if we hear the two versions, we can better comment...
I don't even have one version I can upload.....

This thread came about when I was thinking about Creedence Clearwater Revival.....(not that my one song is anything even remotely close to what CCR did).......they had an unbelievable string of hit singles and albums that came to an end when the members of the band who weren't John Fogerty demanded that their songs be included on the album, and I started wondering.......what great CCR songs that we might have missed out on?
 

2HBStrat

Member
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41,247
The song sucked without that drum part. He would have never found that success (in the movie) without the drum part!
For that one song, yeah, but he went on to be the only former member to continue to have success in music after The Wonders broke up.....
 

ChampReverb

Gold Supporting Member
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11,651
I trust the people in our band to make my music sound much more interesting, refined and just plain BETTER than I ever imagined it.

They do the same thing too.
My bandmates are pretty good at executing parts once they are shown what to do.

Coming up with new, original, creative parts that are better than what I imagined? Not so far.

You play with the hand you're dealt.

-bEn r.
 

2HBStrat

Member
Messages
41,247
My bandmates are pretty good at executing parts once they are shown what to do.

Coming up with new, original, creative parts that are better than what I imagined? Not so far.

You play with the hand you're dealt.

-bEn r.
I guess. On some songs I have purposely left parts open for other people to add things. On THIS particular song I had the entire thing....and what's funny from a creative standpoint is......once you write a song, and those parts are in your head, they're just as important as the words, and the song sounds wrong without them.......
 

RLD

Silver Supporting Member
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7,949
I get it.
I've written hundreds of songs...mostly for music libraries/publishers.
I do all the writing, arranging and perform all the parts and know exactly how I want it.
I also play in a couple bands and have written songs for the groups.
When I present a completed demo of a tune I hope the players will at least listen to the way it's written and attempt to play it that way.
It can be frustrating.
You find that some don't get your vision...for instance, why this kick part works with that bass part to form the groove that makes the song.
Lots of players don't really know why something does or doesn't work...they just play without giving it much thought.
 

markjsmith

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
3,643
I guess. On some songs I have purposely left parts open for other people to add things. On THIS particular song I had the entire thing....and what's funny from a creative standpoint is......once you write a song, and those parts are in your head, they're just as important as the words, and the song sounds wrong without them.......
To you! The reality is once you listen to something a bunch you are invested in it. If you have a better drummer who comes in and plays a "better" part you likely won't give it a chance. I get it, you wrote the song you want it your way. That's great, are you paying your musicians? Cause in that situation that is what you need to do. To not give players ANY creative input, to maybe play a part they think is lame, to play exactly what YOU want-you need to pay them!
 

Crowder

Dang Twangler
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19,074
I agree. The way the drums and bass lock in is essential to the groove of a song.

Sometimes the changes that band members make are a huge and immediate improvement. Other times it seems like they're changing things for the simple reason that they want to come up with their own parts or don't want to be told what part to play.

To get the best results, everyone needs to set aside their egos, listen, and be willing to try different approaches.

One thing I've realized is that it's easy to fall in love with your own demos while you're working on them. Sometimes you'll listen to something you did six months ago and realize that it really didn't capture what was in your head at all. So no wonder your bandmates get confused.
 




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