Discussion in 'The Sound Hound Lounge' started by Bunky, Apr 2, 2015.
Yay or nay
For a cover band, I have seen people play with a music stand or mic stand iPad holder and my initial response is always "what?!".
If that performer never slavishly follows it and just glances at it from time to time, then it is not a distraction for me as part of the audience.
IMO, there is no black-white yes/no response to this question.
Speaking only in regards to a rock/club/bar band using them, I don't think iPads attached to mic stands look that bad if it's used sparingly. If the vocalist is glued to it for the entire night then it hurts the performance. I played with a singer once who couldn't do more than half a night without the iPad, so you can see how that might lead to problems.
I used to be totally against any of it on stage.
Now I have friends using Ipads, I have a big ringbinder. It's often on stage, but more just for the setlist or to review the song list if the proposed set list isn't working with that particular crowd. Or to do a requested song we haven't done forever...and need the lyrics.... or never done as a group!
Sometimes, we share complicated song charts by email and actually pull them out without rehearsal... we expect the other members to go over it.
Lots of different options now days... and worried less about whether there is a music stand on stage or not.
Have you ever noticed big names looking at the lyrics on the floor on TV? Seen it many times... especially on songs that are a tribute to someone etc that the singer/player didn't make famous. They will sing a line, look down , then sing again.
The Lead singer in Jay Leno's Late Night group was terrible for that... easy to see what was going one. But what the heck, they are doing that song once just for that one show... why memorize the lyrics?
Yes. Whatever helps you play the best show possible.
I did a small open mic with my iPad.
Played for three hours, than took requests ( sing alongs)
Used my Ultimate Guitar app for requests, it was a life savior.
Professional actors always have discretely placed prompters. It would be unprofessional not to have them. If you don't ever use them, well done you.
That doesn't mean that you shouldn't learn your lines. More than that. Our songs are rehearsed to the point where I know what phrasing I want to use and exactly where. I look at the audience when I sing and involve them in the experience. The occasional glance at words or music helps me do this better, not worse. I can put everything into the performance without having the anxiety of wondering if I'll remember everything. There are, as others have pointed out, circumstances in which an even looser approach is in order. Just be sensible about your situation. A confident expressive interpretation is what you are after isn't it? Use whatever tools you need to get you there.
It's all in the type of music I guess. Doesn't faze me to see a Jazz Trio or Orchestra with music stands. A Rock band? Eh that's pushing it. Wouldn't happen in my band at least.
I couldn't agree more, Ferret
Im not a fan but have done it for a new song or two I havent compltetly memorized.
I saw a Clapton tribute act at a casino and the singer/guitarist would toss a sheet on the floor after every song. In that context I expect the guy to have it nailed and not rely on any help whatsoever.
Not this again.
Hoo boy. Here we go.
Love it when this subject gets resurrected.
Just wanted to give it a little twist...
I use an iPad on stage for the occasional lyric or chord charts, but I also use it for my TouchMix 16 to mix (mostly IEM mixes) without having to go to the mixer. As tablet mixing starts to catch on, you MAY see more of this.
I have my iPad on a very low stand, to keep it off the floor, but stay low enough that it doesn't stick out like a sore thumb.
I suppose that is my primary objection to traditional music stands on stage (as opposed to iPads, tablets, etc.); They seem to be very good at hiding the performers from the audience!
As long as it isn't an eye sore or a distraction, go for it! (IMHO)
People like to hear stuff they know. They don't really care if you have an iPad or music stand.
I say no.
I think its a crutch for the lazy.
I think the crowd sees it and some people think you're lazy.
Using it for a mixer is one thing, but how often are you mixing in the middle of a song? Put that thing off to the side, you look like a hipster in Starbucks.
Based on that comment, it's obvious you have never mixed from a tablet before! (I'll try not to turn this into a TM16 thread) One of the cool features of the TM16 is a single button to toggle all on board fx on and off. It's not really practical to have it sitting off to the side if I want to kill the fx at the end of a song so the band can talk and interact with the crowd. It sounds really bad when you are talking to the audience with reverb and delay still on! Reverb and delay sound great while singing, but not so much while talking. I'm sure you can understand that. The TM16 also has a Gain Wizard that lets me know when a channel is clipping, so it's really nice to have the mixer in front of me to keep an eye on things...
Also, I can take a quick look at a song list in order to "switch gears" based on audience response, so we can "give the people what they want." We have a pretty big song list, so remembering what is on that list (especially those of us that suffer from CRS) can be difficult.
If I spent the entire show staring at it, I could see your point, but I don't, so I am going to have to disagree with you on this topic. No big deal, you have your opinion and I have mine. As a matter of fact, I can't tell you how many times I've seen players staring at their guitar neck or their pedal board all night and that (to me anyway) is far worse than an occasional glance at an iPad
Between my own band and the bands I sub with, I gig a lot and have had ZERO complaints about me or my use of an iPad. If the day ever comes that I lose a gig because of my iPad, I will leave it at home. Of course, I seriously doubt that will be happening any time soon.
So, a "hipster at Starbucks," nope, but a musician who "likes to take advantage of 21 century technology to put on the best performance possible," is more like it...