Gigging with a Novice...just say NO?

Discussion in 'The Sound Hound Lounge' started by 2HBStrat, Apr 8, 2019.

  1. RumDiary

    RumDiary Member

    Mar 19, 2016
    The Shire
    At some point in this kid's growth, someone needs to at least tell him the truth.
    Y'now, hey listen man I really like your voice and you've got a good presence.....but you need to tune up, practice guitar and listen. Otherwise stick to singing.
  2. gtrdave

    gtrdave Member

    Jan 18, 2012
    The Small Wonder
    My only thought is that everything you listed is something that should be dealt with before you ever hit the rehearsals and via band discussions.
    Your options are refuse to communicate and prolong the abuse or have an adult conversation about putting your best selves out there.
    If the guy is humble and teachable, you may have a very positive influence on him.
    If he's not, it will probably continue to be a bad experience.
    strumminsix likes this.
  3. misterturtlehead

    misterturtlehead Member

    Jun 23, 2013
    I spent three and a half years gigging regularly with a man in his sixties who had bad equipment- a Starcaster and a practice amplifier with which his tone was rather lawnmower-like, was not a good rhythm player, sometimes would play out of tune but didn't know it, and always played six string chords and just strummed away. He also had some odd musical ideas and sent lots of near incomprehensible emails with words that contained capital letters in the middle or would spell words like "suggest" as sub Jest. He would also sometimes get his yahoo friends to sit in. It wasn't long after I started working with this band that I figured out what I needed to be paid per night to work with anybody. I told him what that number was. He paid me that number whether anybody else got that much or not. After three and a half years I had to leave the band because he got weirder and worse than usual.
    2HBStrat likes this.
  4. eclecto-acoustic

    eclecto-acoustic Supporting Member

    Apr 5, 2011
    ze Island
    Help him out.

    I was tone deaf (actually...not exaggerating) when I started out. Didn't know tuning was a thing. Learned all of my chord shapes like that and disgusted many people. My tones were also all manner of bad. Harsh distortion and way too much of it, very little comprehension of musical space, the sonic pie, dynamics, and so on.

    Through brute force, hours of practice, and lots of encouragement and teaching, I got better. Now I play and sing proficiently (for a hobbyist/amateur).

    He can get better, if you help.
    Last edited: Apr 8, 2019
  5. Thumpalumpacus

    Thumpalumpacus Member

    Dec 16, 2011
    Tuning is not a negotiable. Put it nice and soft, but make it firm and clear: tune up. The best players in the world sound like crap out of tune with the band -- much less a n00b.

    Go over the changes in the songs with him, and make sure he knows the material. He shouldn't be playing stuff onstage he doesn't have wired.

    If you're not willing to do this, "no, thanks" is probably your best answer. I'm not sure about your gigging situation, but generally you're only going to be as impressive as the band you're onstage with. If he's amenable to correction and picks it up quickly, perhaps you can put together a going concern. If he's not, bail out before you get suck-by-association.
  6. Simon

    Simon Supporting Member

    May 16, 2006
    SW Michigan
    Tell Him straight up that you have some constructive criticism that will help him as a player and singer. Tell him He has great potential, and that the best way to get better is to pay attention to those that have experience. Just come right out and try and help the Kid.
    i never understand why Gear Pagers ***** foot around so much?

    2HB strat, You seem fairly confrontational here, is that just a internet thing?
    eclecto-acoustic likes this.
  7. 2HBStrat

    2HBStrat Member

    Apr 3, 2009
    East of the Rockies...
    That has never been my intention unless I was joking around or responding to a previous confrontation toward me from another poster...
  8. Tone_Terrific

    Tone_Terrific Supporting Member

    Dec 26, 2004
    The bottom line:
    The problems listed by 2HB are all things that should have been covered off in rehearsal.
    If he is not willing to rehearse for a gig and do MD duty the problems will remain for a lengthy time.
    The band is not ready for real gigs.

    Avoid the 'gig' or become a mentor.
  9. DrumBob

    DrumBob Gold Supporting Member

    May 25, 2008
    NW NJ
    My thoughts? Here you go: JUST SAY NO!

    Bid them farewell and explain it to your friend. You shouldn't go out and play with someone like that. Let him learn the ropes with someone else.
  10. 2HBStrat

    2HBStrat Member

    Apr 3, 2009
    East of the Rockies...
    Yeah, there was no rehearsal...just playing a gig.
  11. monwobobbo

    monwobobbo Member

    Mar 29, 2010
    North Chili, NY
    why not have a chat with your drummer buddy that asked you in the first place? guessing he knows this guy better and perhaps some of your "tips" would be taken better from him instead of you.
    2HBStrat likes this.
  12. Rockledge

    Rockledge Member

    Jun 15, 2011
    It is odd that he even found a low quality Chinese amp, most of the stuff coming from China now is top notch, even the cheapest stuff.

    The problem with those without experience is that they often are not willing to take direction and learn for those who really have been there and done that, their notion of what it means to play in a gigging band is more often than not quite different than the reality of it.
    There is, however, now and then the beginner that is eager to learn and is willing to take the guidance of those with experience.
    It shouldn't take long to figure out which he is.
    When you discover which he is, you will know whether or not you want to be part of it.
  13. LqdSndDist

    LqdSndDist Member

    Dec 13, 2012
    This thread is so totally TGP.....

    See guys complain there just aren’t any gigs, no one works to book gigs etc, then when someone has a gig (even if it’s a one off thing) they have issue that they are better than the other musicians (another common TGP thread topic), and naturally many replies are along the lines of guys who aren’t that good, don’t have nice gear etc should be performing.

    But then, also in TGP fashion, guys who don’t gig are bashed for being home players, and unless your getting up on a stage, you don’t have a valid opinion.

    So then dude like the singer must not know what to do... he’s not good enough to be on a stage, but if your not gigging your just another home player, which isn’t cool, so you need to get on the stage, but obviously not with anyone who’s a TGP’r because they can be bothered to play with guys who aren’t equally good, BUT lots of those guys only want to play at home these days......

    Confusing stuff for everyone, no?

    Makes me miss the days of having a dude in the band, regardless of talent, becasue his parents owned a van or big SUV they could borrow for getting us to gigs, or a basement we could jam in becasue they worked all the time lol

    Good old days where stuff was simple
  14. Andres6and8

    Andres6and8 Member

    Feb 26, 2016
    At times, I wished that I had older musicians mentor me when I started out. Having been a strong musician at school, I probably wouldn't have shown up to a gig unprepared without a tuner or not knowing how to play the basic Major/minor/Maj7/min7/etc chords in every key.

    In a case like yours, though, a rehearsal before the gig would probably have helped big time. Maybe next time ask for a rehearsal? At least you'd know what to expect during the gig.
    navin and 2HBStrat like this.
  15. fenderjapan

    fenderjapan World Heavyweight Champion Silver Supporting Member

    Jul 3, 2012
    There is a potential for you to mentor him. After all, we all learned from playing with people better than we were.
    But if that is a burden you aren't willing/able to take on, either encourage him to focus on his strengths.
  16. CaliCaveMan

    CaliCaveMan Supporting Member

    Dec 2, 2016
    Northern Ca
    LOL, oh man, that's a bummer, but played with a dude and we just had no choice but to have the sound man adjust his volume at FOH so it wouldn't ruin the evening, lol.....
  17. Johnny Ninefingers

    Johnny Ninefingers Member

    Feb 2, 2016
    "Right Kid, you've got potential; do you want to get it sorted so you can realise some of it?"

    Normally works for me as an opening. If it rubs them up the wrong way it may nevertheless inspire a zeal to prove other folk wrong and do the work by themselves. Getting talent to accept discipline is often about finding the right levers. It takes mentoring and nurturing, which is time consuming and leads to other personal investments of friendship etc. Old guys like we are have to balance our other commitments, so we try to work out if it is actually worth it. How much potential does the kid have? Good looking and a good voice is a start, but not sufficient without hard work. It's a competitive world out there.

    Test him. Give him something to learn properly. and when he does things wrong, show him how to put them right. Evidently you are in two minds about working with him; what would get him to step up to the plate and do the basics like tuning?

    But if it's not happening bail but try and stay on good terms. He may come good in a few years time. :)
  18. mikendzel

    mikendzel Member

    Aug 4, 2010
    Easton, MD
    Is he coach-able? If so, help him out and enjoy the ride!
  19. I am the Liquor

    I am the Liquor Member

    Jan 12, 2015
    Let your love fly
    Like a bird on the wing
    And let your love bind you
    To all living things
    And let your love shine
    And you'll know what I mean,
    … That's the reason
  20. Gasp100

    Gasp100 Supporting Member

    Oct 23, 2007
    North Myrtle Beach, SC
    Is he handsome? And young?
    Help him get his **** together vocally, tune his guitar for him and drop it way low in the mix. Maybe have him play acoustic throughout?
    Drop all of your other bands and join his bandwagon so you can concentrate.

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