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How do you get someone in a band to lay off?

they

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
249
Maybe it's the incessant guitar noodler who fills over the verses...

Maybe it's the harp player who feels that he has to be playing something every quarternote...

Maybe it's the singer who interrupts a heartfelt solo break to exhort the crowd...

Maybe it's the drummer who has to fill every turnaround...

How do you get them to lay off and let the rhythm section groove take over? Less is more!
 

EL 34 X2

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
1,315
Perhaps you can enlist a fellow band member to second your concerns. If a portion of the band feels likewise, it could help to make the point. Though this might be an issue of taste. In my experience some folks have it, some don't, and it's a hard thing to acquire after the fact.
 

Turbo Gerbil

Member
Messages
5,456
kicking their amp plug out of the socket otta do it.

although a lot of time the singer exhorting the crowd helps the show, even if the guitarist gets his feelings hurt.
 

loudboy

Member
Messages
27,312
Have their replacement tell them that's the reason they were fired? <g>

Seriously, record a practice and then have a band critique.

If the offender actually thinks it sounds good, and you care about how your band sounds, you'll have to find a new guy.
 

AndreasG

Member
Messages
2,056
And then... tell them bluntly.

No one grows without honest feedback.
A guitar player friend of mine told his bass player once: you play on the e and a string up to the fifth fret. Everything else is not your business! :)
It worked....


Otherwise, record "his" version, then "your" version....it will become evident by then...
 

2HBStrat

Senior Member
Messages
41,223
Give them the greatest hits of Booker T. & The M.G.'s and tell them to play like that.
 

tiktok

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
23,504
Maybe it's the incessant guitar noodler who fills over the verses...

Maybe it's the harp player who feels that he has to be playing something every quarternote...

Maybe it's the singer who interrupts a heartfelt solo break to exhort the crowd...

Maybe it's the drummer who has to fill every turnaround...

How do you get them to lay off and let the rhythm section groove take over? Less is more!
Well, the band leader tells them, and then they do it.

If someone tells them to lay off, and they don't do, you may not actually have a band leader.
 

Chrome Dinette

Senior Member
Messages
14,369
I read threads like this, and there are a few of them from time to time, and I wonder how these bands get started in the first place and why this stuff goes on after one practice, if the descriptions of what these people do are to be believed.
 

mikeguy53

Member
Messages
992
If you're good enough friends, tell them right up front. You don't have to be loud and obnoxious about it. Just a " I think it might be better if you didn't stink the place up so bad asswipe" (Just kidding.)
 

StompBoxBlues

Member
Messages
20,143
Record the band, have everyone listen together, and point out when folks are stepping on each other. Include yourself...there must be something you also do here and there that could be better, maybe not even pick out each person, but as a whole say "we play too busy".

Lots of folks think its boring to have a little silence, but you have to work the song...meaning when the singer sings, HE or SHE is the focus, when someone is soloing, they are the focus.

Fills are harder. The cardinal rule "play about half of what you think if to play".

Serve the songs and don't be afraid of it not being busy enough...make folks WANT to hear that next fill because you skipped the first two.
 

stevel

Member
Messages
15,177
Maybe it's the incessant guitar noodler who fills over the verses...

Maybe it's the harp player who feels that he has to be playing something every quarternote...

Maybe it's the singer who interrupts a heartfelt solo break to exhort the crowd...

Maybe it's the drummer who has to fill every turnaround...

How do you get them to lay off and let the rhythm section groove take over? Less is more!
Maybe they don't need to. Have you considered that YOU might be wrong? I'm not saying you are mind you, but it's obvious that YOU have YOUR opinions about what YOU want to be doing, and THEY have different opinions.

It's important you communicate. You need to say "here's what I think". If they agree, great. If they don't, it may be that you need to look for a new band if you decide it's going to bother you enough to make that happen. You may find some kindred spirits. You may have some experienced members who the less experienced members look up to.

Communication is the key.

But you're not going to change people. I've found that out over the years.

Steve
 

davebc

Member
Messages
4,298
The incessant noddling is a really bad habit, that can also work its way onto the stage.
Tell him to knock it off.
 

germs

Member
Messages
6,025
tell them honestly. because, honestly it usually isn't very good.

it's happened to me where i walk into an audition and the other guitar player (the self-described "lead") didn't bother to learn the songs, but just fill in on the fly over the chord changes. basically just wanked all over a ballad.

i looked at him and asked, "you ever heard the song before?" he just shook his head, smiled proudly and asked me (i swear) "nope! sounded sweet, right?"

not the band for me...
 

Guitar Dave T

Member
Messages
10,825
Maybe they don't need to. Have you considered that YOU might be wrong? I'm not saying you are mind you, but it's obvious that YOU have YOUR opinions about what YOU want to be doing, and THEY have different opinions.

It's important you communicate. You need to say "here's what I think". If they agree, great. If they don't, it may be that you need to look for a new band if you decide it's going to bother you enough to make that happen. You may find some kindred spirits. You may have some experienced members who the less experienced members look up to.

Communication is the key.

But you're not going to change people. I've found that out over the years.

Steve
Communication IS the key, but it doesn't end with verbal communication. What's more important is MUSICAL conversation, and like any good verbal communication where we're all blessed with 1 mouth and 2 ears, MUSICAL communication is made up of 1/3 playing and 2/3's listening.

This is the first step to understanding musical placement, something we ALL can stand to improve on no matter how experienced at it we may be.

But back to the OP's question - I find it easier to show people than tell them. This way they see the positive results first hand.

I've watched Buddy Guy do this, and locally here in D/FW, there's a local guy named Perry Jones who is a MASTER at it. If I'm singing or leading the instrumental, I will give the hand signal to "take it way down". If someone doesn't, I'll make it part of the over-the-mic conversation shared with the crowd. "Come on now, everyone bring it WAY down... Further, further, futher... There! Now how's that sound?" At this point the crowd is usually leaning in, whoopin' and hollerin' because THEY'VE been drawn in to the CONVERSATION.

Do this enough and not only will everyone on stage get it, they'll be looking for opportunities to MAKE IT HAPPEN. It's a positive way to bring everyone around to the concept.
 






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