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Monkey Steve

Hell Is Other People (who know you play in a band)

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Comparing notes with a drummer mate over our festive season activities, the common theme was that we both suffered at the hands of people who know that we have played in bands and therefore think that we want to hear all about their own musical tastes and experiences.

Mine was fairly run of the mill but I am very well versed in the "here, you like music..." opening from somebody who's about to tell me all about the four hour documentary they watched on the Tibetan nose flute last night.

His was much worse.  Having been invited for Christmas lunch by a neighbour, him and his wife, who both love a traditional Christmas, were looking forward to some turkey, sprouts and snoozing on the sofa while Wizzard and Slade are on repeat.  They arrived to find no sign of any tinsel, a curry bubbling away on the cooker, and "here, you like music..." resulting in him being subjected to a live Led Zep recording featuring the best part of half an hour's guitar noodling for a single solo by Jimmy Page, before moving on to 15 minutes of unaccompanied drum thumping in Moby Richard.  Drugs are bad

I mean, I love Led Zep and so does he, but there's a reason that punk had to happen and that reason is the live version of Dazed and Confused.

I do wonder if people actually enjoy that sort of thing, or if they know that Jimmy Page is a great guitarist, and that Led Zep are a great band, known for their live shows, and think that they should be enjoying it even if they don't really like it.  Does anybody actually look forward to the moment that the rest of the band leaves the stage and the drummer starts warming up?

Anyway, anybody else who regularly has to try and smile and look interested when somebody talks at you about their musical interests?

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I doze off if someone speaks to me about disposable chart pap,  rap, metal, classic rock, punk,  brit poop,  c+w ,  trad blues, big band , trad jazz, reggae

As you can see, i just dont like music

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Yep, for some reason we had karaoke at work just before Xmas, and everyone was trying to get me up singing. I play bass in a skinhead punk band, my "singing" is really not for karaoke at TV volumes in the workplace. They said, well can`t you do a Bon Jovi song then, as if for some reason skinhead punk and Bon Jovi are similar. So I showed them a clip of the type of music I listen to and play. That stopped `em.

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I'm the exact opposite. I think because I play work colleagues etc feel that they can't tell me about their tastes in case they get it wrong!?! Music is personal and just because I play doesn't make my preferences any more or less valid than anybody else's.

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People look at me with much suspicion when I say I don't go and watch bands if I get a free weekend night!

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People in work who know I'm a musician keep asking me if I've seen X Factor or telling me I should go on it.

Once and for all, no I've never watched it, and I have no plans to ever go on it.

Thanks.

 

 

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42 minutes ago, Bolo said:

@Lozz196 What clip?

@fleabag Ah a Motown fan!

Oooh, and a bit of funk, and a bit of jazzy funk and a smidge of prog ( i hear people spitting ).  You forgot those mr Bolo

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Of course folks could just be trying to make conversation with somebody they know plays music and they're trying to choose a topic with some common ground.

In those situations I try to smile and join in the conversation.

I'm thinking of calling this approach 'politeness'....I've got a feeling it might be quite useful ;) Not sure about the name yet tho.

Edited by ahpook
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People at work who know I play bass, guitar etc couldn't give a monkey's left t1t about the fact. While a broad range of topics is covered - body depilation, Nextflix, rugby union, skin conditions, decluttering, pet frogs, Fitbits - (and that's just today) one topic which hardly ever gets discussed is music. I even have a bass (in its gig bag) by my desk . Someone once asked why I have a guitar in the office and that was about as much interest expressed. At home in the living room I have guitars on stands in the corner.  The only interest they arouse is if a small offspring picks a string or two.  In my social circle I have one mate who shares my taste for ambient electronica and another who's a fan of punk and dub and that's shallot. On the whole, among those I know, music appears to be something just to have on in the background while doing dull chores.

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1 hour ago, ahpook said:

Of course folks could just be trying to make conversation with somebody they know plays music and they're trying to choose a topic with some common ground.

In those situations I try to smile and join in the conversation.

I'm thinking of calling this approach 'politeness'....I've got a feeling it might be quite useful ;) Not sure about the name yet tho.

It’ll never catch on 🙃

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2 hours ago, Bolo said:

@Lozz196 What clip?

@fleabag Ah a Motown fan!

I decided on Never Get a Job, by The Last Resort. It all went quiet after that.

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1 hour ago, ahpook said:

I'm thinking of calling this approach 'politeness'... Not sure about the name yet tho.

'politeness' - mmm...its got a certain je ne sais quoi...

...I'm not sure about the whole engaging with people bit though.

The politeness bit would be so much easier without the other people. :scratch_one-s_head:

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Many years ago there was an old storehand at work who was a big, and I mean BIG, fan of Hank Marv and the Shads and was never seen without his walkman on. He often used to talk to me about them, usually starting with the "'Ere, Rich, you like music..." prelude. Now dear old Trev had apparently suffered a significant head injury in his distant past, and had never fully recovered really. And one day, I had a bit of a glimpse into his world. "'Ere, Rich, you like music," he said, "'ave a listen to this bit of guitar, it's blimmin brilliant it is". Hands me his headphones. I put them on. He presses play. The sound from his £5 Woolies walkmanthing is tinny and atrocious, but worse than that... in my left ear, Hank is noodling away on side A of one of Trev's numerous Shads tapes... and in my right ear, side B of the same album is playing backwards...

No wonder Trev was a bit special. Bless him.

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People who are passionate about styles of music that you hate.....and feel they need to tell you about it ad finitum.

 

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It’s even worse in the age of the smartphone. Many a cringeworthy minute I have sat clutching someone’s phone listening to something shit pretending I can hear and like it. You can’t give the phone back early so you just have to sit and feign interest. Something I’m bad at.

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59 minutes ago, TheGreek said:

People who are passionate about styles of music that you hate.....and feel they need to tell you about it ad finitum.

 

'Jazz fans' they're called.

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"How fantastic to hear you talk about Jim Reeves! Now listen to this Stockhausen on my phone! You'll LURV it!"
[presses PLAY without waiting for an answer].

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9 hours ago, Monkey Steve said:

His was much worse.  Having been invited for Christmas lunch by a neighbour, him and his wife, who both love a traditional Christmas, were looking forward to some turkey, sprouts and snoozing on the sofa while Wizzard and Slade are on repeat.  They arrived to find no sign of any tinsel, a curry bubbling away on the cooker, and "here, you like music..." resulting in him being subjected to a live Led Zep recording featuring the best part of half an hour's guitar noodling for a single solo by Jimmy Page, before moving on to 15 minutes of unaccompanied drum thumping in Moby Richard.  Drugs are bad

I mean, I love Led Zep and so does he, but there's a reason that punk had to happen and that reason is the live version of Dazed and Confused.

That sounds pretty bad, but if I had gone somewhere expecting slade to be repeat and they were having an Aqua barbie girl party, I would still think I was up on the deal!

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Actually, no, when i have conversations about music, it tends to be the irritating one that goes like:

Them: Oh you play instruments, I would love to do that, but I have no talent.

Me: You just need to get an instrument, learn it and practice

Them: Oh but I am not good at that sort of stuff, it must be nice to have talent so you can do it.

Me: Its just practice, you just keep practicing and you get better.

Them: No, I tried it once, I couldn't get a decent sound, but its easy of you have talent isn't it

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Yeah that's depressing and frustrating. I have zero patience with learned helplessness. Yes you [email protected]*dy well could if you cared enough to work hard enough. I had to. 

The recurring conversation that bugs the heck out of me is

Me: I play in a blues band.

Them: (look of surprise, pause) Oh, you sing?

Me: No.

Them: (look of surprise, pause) Oh, you play guitar?

Me: No. I play bass. 

Them: (look of extreme surprise, long pause) Double bass?

Me: No. I play electric bass guitar. 

Them: (look of very extreme surprise, no answer) 

I'm not over-sensitive to gender stereotyping (and have never met it as a Computer Science lecturer) but why the blank blank blank do so many people still assume that women don't play bass? 😞 

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To be fair, it's bloody better than talking about football or if your kids are gonna get in to grammar school, innit? 

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Music? You want to try having a career in anything to do with computers. You instantly become everyone's personal technician and are expected to be able to solve an issue from the vaguest of descriptions!

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I managed for almost four and a half years to limit the knowledge of my musical endeavours at work to "I played in a band when I was 17". This worked, people assume you own an instrument in the loft. I have over time confidentiality told a few people I trust but I just don't want: "oh great I got a six string Kay guitar when I was eight..." Or "brilliant at the Xmas party we need a work band" or worse still someone miming air guitar across the office at me! The only person who knows any detail of what I do musically keeps it discrete, has grade 8 clarinet and her dad was a semi pro bass player. Some others think I "collect" guitars which is fine because then you're not asked "what stuff do you play?" Magically. 

Overall I don't want people I don't know but have to work with knowing my band name and looking us up. I also have a "stage name" with my band so I'm not Google-able. A Dutch guy I worked with in an old company was on Dutch top of the pops singing some football chant while wearing a gold lame jacket and Elvis sunglasses, one of the lads found it by googling him. We didn't take him too seriously anyway for professional reasons but as soon as we saw that video we just couldn't stop laughing at him. I don't want the same happening to me... Even if I did make it on to Dutch top of the pops!

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9 hours ago, Woodinblack said:

Actually, no, when i have conversations about music, it tends to be the irritating one that goes like:

Them: Oh you play instruments, I would love to do that, but I have no talent.

Me: You just need to get an instrument, learn it and practice

Them: Oh but I am not good at that sort of stuff, it must be nice to have talent so you can do it.

Me: Its just practice, you just keep practicing and you get better.

Them: No, I tried it once, I couldn't get a decent sound, but its easy of you have talent isn't it

I had pretty much the same conversation the other day. Knowing the guy was a gamer, I got him to log in to his online account thingy and show me how many hundreds of hours he’d burned on there; it was a hell of a lot. I hinted that the same investment of time and money would have put him well on the way to playing an instrument had he actually wanted to. Made for a shortened version of the conversation!

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