First meeting of my new band. HELP!

Discussion in 'The Sound Hound Lounge' started by sonofspy, Jun 17, 2019.

  1. sonofspy

    sonofspy Member

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    For the very first time in my life I am starting a band....at age 66.

    [Edit] I have been in a few bands but all of them self destructed quickly [/Edit]

    ***See Update 2: https://www.thegearpage.net/board/i...meeting-of-my-new-band-help-update-2.2056880/ ***


    I am thrilled, and scared to death all at the same time.

    They will all be at my house at 7P tomorrow (Tuesday) evening.
    I have met only one of them IRL.

    I could use all of your help and experience on how to structure
    this first evening.

    Many thanks in advance.
     
    Last edited: Jun 24, 2019
    PBGas, shadowbox, Oriondk and 8 others like this.
  2. aiq

    aiq Supporting Member

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    Lay your pistol on the table, look them in the eye, then ask, “Any questions?”
     
  3. mikebat

    mikebat Member

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    Be clear with your goals and expectations. Focus on the fun. Have some light finger food, like a veggie plate, with couple of beers but not too many.

    Have everyone state their expectations. All business settled at the beginning them focus on fun. Set small goals and work towards them.

    And keep the positivity in the air.
     
    Last edited: Jun 17, 2019
  4. LookerBob

    LookerBob Supporting Member

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    Eh, just have a plan for a song or two you want to start with, then just start trying them out, see how things sit. Don't expect everything to work perfectly or gel completely on the first day. Maybe print out lyric/chord charts for those tunes so people can hit the ground running with some loose structure.
     
    Mad-kiwi, Pablomago, sjruvolo and 9 others like this.
  5. Fatherflot

    Fatherflot Member

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    I always begin with:

    "First things first --- here are my sketches for your spirit animal face paint designs. Sorry, Starman belongs to me, along with all publishing. Now everybody tune up to G#"
     
    Last edited: Jun 17, 2019
  6. m@2

    m@2 Member

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    I think being on the "same page" is pretty important. Delusions of grandeur often plague new bands, so making sure there is a commonality in terms of goals, level of commitment etc can be helpful.
     
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  7. standard24

    standard24 Member

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    Pre-prepared charts in readable (large) font and music stands will help a lot! Someone has to do it, and without them, there'll always be some guy who doesn't know the songs.

    Watch the volume.
     
    massacre, CRBMoA, tele1951 and 3 others like this.
  8. veus55

    veus55 Silver Supporting Member

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    The first meeting is always nerve raking, but as said before, set the goal and expectation from the beginning. The main goal to form a band, especially later in life, is to have fun. If there is chemistry, chances are your band-mates will become some of your best friends.
    Just relax and have fun!
    Please report
     
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  9. RLD

    RLD Member

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    Is this just a face to face meeting or is this a jam session meeting?
    If the former, making sure everyone is on the same page is #1...for instance, is this just for fun or do some want to play clubs?
    If you're playing it's time to see where everyone is musically...playing a simple 1/4/5 can be very revealing and a great way to get the vibe of who knows what.
     
    Plainman, DiAmoroso, Jon C and 2 others like this.
  10. Fatherflot

    Fatherflot Member

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    "Giant Steps" at 226 BPM
     
  11. Tone_Terrific

    Tone_Terrific Supporting Member

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    OTOH make sure they are not committed to mediocrity either.
    Getting a band up to speed, if that is what you want, is a lot of work for lower level players (I know;)) and less than enthusiastic commitment and no plan will lead to a quick fadeout.
    Every member has to try by the same amount.
     
    sonofspy likes this.
  12. rickt

    rickt Gold Supporting Member

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    What's your vision for the band? And, how will the members of the band meet that vision? Remember, people make up bands, so treat everyone with respect and have fun at the first meeting.
     
  13. mikefair

    mikefair Supporting Member

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    Are you playing or meeting for the first time to talk? Do you want to play covers or write your own material? Do you hope to play paying gigs or get together and play informally?

    From my (now lengthy) experience, bands with goals and focus are a lot more satisfying.
     
    keenan likes this.
  14. SRQGuitar

    SRQGuitar Director of the 2019 Like Farming Initiative Gold Supporting Member

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    Pick a few tunes that are easy and pertain to the genre(s) you're shooting for. Have everyone do some light intro chatter while setting up, rip through a few tunes then take a break to discuss goals, commitment and such. A good litmus test is to see if everyone can agree on a night they can get together consistently. I've had projects that couldn't get off the ground because of availability issues. Try to identify strengths and weaknesses. Personality issues as well as musicianship. Hopefully you'll find good core members out of the gate but if you even find one solid keeper your doing well.
     
  15. briwinters

    briwinters Member

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    Congrats man....playing music with other people is one of the best experiences you can have as a musician. As a guitar teacher with many adult students I can report that the ones who pursue playing music with others are the ones who getting the most satisfaction out of it. A couple of tips I usually give:

    -First meetup is going to be a lot of feeling out. Lots of it will be seeing if you like just being in the same room as them. LOTS of hangtime when working on music projects... make sure you can deal with them as humans when not making noise together. People can learn to play their instruments and their parts better....for many learning to be better people is much harder.

    -If you can setup any gear before they get there do it. Having a PA ready to go for rehearsal saves a lot of time so you can cut to the good stuff.

    -Have some songs discussed before you get together that you plan on trying, Good chance to feel out how people take on homework, a huge part of playing music together. Keep the songs a little simple at first. Play something you can stretch on...not sure if blues is your thing, but something like a 12 bar is good for feeling each other out. If someone doesn’t know how to play a 12 bar teach them.... sorting out how people learn is a big part of figuring out how you’ll work together.

    - No right or wrong answers on what your goals are. Just discuss, keep an open mind and see if your goals line up. In my experience having some general goal will get you farther faster and you’ll get more satisfaction out of getting together.

    - Don’t blow up the band if it’s not everything you expected immediately. Don’t commit to playing together forever immediately. Chase after experience, it will all sort itself out soon enough.

    Enjoy & congrats again on taking the first steps!
     
  16. mkl13

    mkl13 Silver Supporting Member

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    I dont have any suggestions other to say congratulations and have fun!
     
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  17. gtrdave

    gtrdave Member

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    Make the goals, expectations and limitations clear from the beginning. Things like having songs learned before rehearsals, how much (if any) alcohol consumption is too much, how often do you want to gig, are you doing this for money or for fun or both, and so on...all are topics worth being very clear on before things get ugly and next thing you know you or one of your mates is here on TGP, posting about their awful band experience and asking 'how can I fix x, y and z...' when all you really had to do was talk about it before anyone played a note.
     
    sonofspy likes this.
  18. Ubersooner

    Ubersooner Member

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    At our age, it doesn't matter how you start the meeting, it will devolve quickly into a discussion about grilled food and medical problems.:)
     
    Rob Taft, MoPho, Larry Eh? and 43 others like this.
  19. Funky54

    Funky54 Member

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    I don’t have a very large pool of musicians to be very picky... so my advice is to be open and willing to broaden your choices of songs.

    I absolutely refuse to play blues. That has been a real problem. Realize (intentional or not) they will lie about what they want to play. Everyone can get together and mention bands and songs they like... but three practices in someone’s gonna start suggesting or just flat playing stuff the “band” wasn’t supposed to be about.

    Last, be realistic with vocals. No matter how much you like to play a song... or don’t like to play a song, pick songs that you as a group can do well. And that goes double for vocals.

    Vocals need to choose most of the songs, the key they are played in or disperse and start again with a new singer.
     
    wstsidela, sjwieczorkow and sonofspy like this.
  20. Gallery

    Gallery Supporting Member

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    Get 'em all drunk now so you can weed out any arsholes or questionable characters right away and save yourself some trouble down the line.
     

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