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jezzaboy

Auditioning a singer. The next step.

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Posted (edited)

Just seen another topic re how to audition a singer. Well here is the "after the audition" topic.

Last night we had 2 singers down for an audition. It`s for a side project to our main band and we will be doing 70/80`s mainstream punk/new wave.

Both of them are nice decent guys who can also play rhythm guitar (well they said so but none of them appeared with a guitar!) but here is the outcome of said meeting.

Singer A. lots of experience, used to do stuff with midi files but wants to go out with a band again. Great communication whilst setting everything up regarding the audition, always quick to answer texts etc, super easy to get on with and has good ideas re songs to cover. His vocals weren`t the strongest but the phrasing was good and he was very enthusiastic and wants to get things up and running and get out gigging asap. He also has a nice pa.

Singer B. An absolute nightmare when it came to setting up the audition. Took 2 weeks to answer my first e mail, said he was ill which was fair enough. Then took a further week to get back to me, said he had lost my number - that was in my first mail. I decided to forget him as he didn`t come across as reliable but he eventually called me and I invited him down.

He had been in a band for 2 years but it fell apart. They had been rehearsing loads but he never mentioned any gigs. He didn`t seem bothered re song choices and never really gave us any idea what songs he wanted to cover. But his voice was strong, really loud and according to the other 2, better than singer A. He also likes loud guitars o.O

The 3 of us had a brief meeting after the studio and I liked A, the other 2 liked B.

I see A as easy to get on with and very positive, a decent singer, says he can give it all the nonsense that is needed to keep things going between songs and as the other 2 didn`t have to deal with the setting up process, A is on the ball re communication.

Singer B has a stronger voice and the other guys reckon he`s a better singer. But his communications were terrible and he was only there for 40 mins and couldn`t wait to bugger off but says he really enjoyed himself. I also get the impression that the last band was more of a social club than a serious band but I could be wrong.

So here I`m sitting wondering why I ever bothered getting back into this band malarkey again....

 

Edited by jezzaboy
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If singer A ticks all the boxes but just lacks a bit of balls I would give him the nod like everything he will only get better.

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Singer A on all counts.

Singer B although having the stronger voice would be a absolute nightmare based on these early signs, personally wouldn’t touch him with a barge pole.

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A couple of times I've invited singers back for a second go, where there was certainly promise and to see if they could improve, or on one occasion where the band was split with half thinking a particular singer was a great bloke who would fit right in and the other half thinking he was a talentless oaf who couldn't carry a tune in a bucket (the second half were right, as the tape of the second audition proved)

so might be worth asking A back to see if he can improve and give a better impression of his singing.  Or possibly both of them, to see if B reverts to type and fails to turn up

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First rule of interviewing, eliminate candidates who aren't appointable. So rather than compare A with B, ask the question of each 'is s/he good enough to join the band?' This will then leave you with two, one or no candidates, so you can move on to the next stage of the process.

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Singer A has the right credentials and attitude - with a bit of coaching could improve. A bit more confidence he could come on leaps and bounds.

Singer B has the wrong credentials - seems like he can't be arsed already, wants to go home early and isn't taking it seriously IMO.

I'd go with singer A personally, 

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Posted (edited)

I’d go along with the majority and appoint singer B.

 

 

 

I’d then bugger off and let them deal with the consequences 🥳

Edited by oldslapper
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Posted (edited)

Audition them again, maybe with more time the first guy will sound miles better and it will also give a chance to the second guy to show if he's going to communicate and not be a total PITA. We auditioned new singers a few years ago, first audition was very close between two of the girls so so we asked them both back and the second time it was an easy choice.

 

Also don't deal with all the communication this time, leave it to one of the other members who were enamoured with the PITA guy. You might find they change their mind when they're the ones trying to organise someone who is so blasé with other people's time and schedules. Recruiting a band member who CBA to reply to messages is setting yourself up for a headache.

Edited by lemmywinks
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Posted (edited)

I'd invite them both back for another run through of the songs but let them know that they have been "whittled" done to, the last 2 singers. They don't have to know that there weren't other applicants and maybe, knowing that they are "THE" two choices, it may give them added incentive to pick up their games either 1) vocally and 2) communication and enthusiasm wise. 

I think nerves may also have a part to play, too. It manifests itself in funny ways sometimes. Meeting new people especially in a group situation can be quite unnerving, as we are all aware. Maybe a 2nd audition will improve their confidence. Good luck either way 

Edited by mattbass6
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Thanks for all the helpful replies. Getting the 2 of them back down is a fine idea. 

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I suggest that you give some helpful, positive feedback to contestant A, let him know the areas you think he can improve on...

...although I did once do that to a singer who had a great voice but clearly wasn't a good fit for the band's music.  Didn't go down very well, and I got a huffy "well if you don't think I'm right what's the point in me wasting my time coming back" response.

So be gentle and encouraging, and maybe not too blunt about their shortcomings

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I'd tell them both that you can't decide and ask them back again.

You've got 2 options

1 - Give them no feedback on your dilemmas and see if anything changes

2 - Tell them both what aspects of the audtions went well and what didn't go well and see if anything changes

I'd personally go with the one who identifies what went wrong and tries to fix it rather than someone who is oblivious to what's going on around and doesn't change/adapt.  Just imagine what it's like learning new songs with someone who can't doesn't communicate well and  doesn't seem to be too bothered.  At the end of the day a band relies on everyone to pull their weight ...

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singer A will or should improve with time, singer B will never change his fundamental personality flaws, ie late to reply, no real input etc, to me its a no brainer.

 

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Singer A all the way.

No need for a second audition. Decent singer singing songs he didn't choose, enthusiastic,so would be better at ones he did, good at communicating, eager and has a good pa.

Why bother with B? 

 

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just now I showed the breaking news pic to our drummer who immediately replied 'fake news'!

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2 hours ago, la bam said:

Singer A all the way.

No need for a second audition. Decent singer singing songs he didn't choose, enthusiastic,so would be better at ones he did, good at communicating, eager and has a good pa.

Why bother with B? 

 

I totally agree with this and other similar views. But the upshot is I can`t seem to convince the others so I have decided to knock it on the head and cut my loses before this goes to far. Bit of a shame but singer A has other options that he will now take. Thanks for all the comments.

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I'm possibly on my own a bit here but neither would have got the job for me. Forget B. Waste of time. A sounds like a really nice guy but if it's a side project then you have a bit more time to find someone who can be the best of both A & B. The two members of a band that have to be absolutely right are singers and drummers. A singer is the face of the band so he or she needs to be excellent and confident but they also need to be a team member and someone you want to work with. 

 

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I'd agree with the sentiment that with singers, you need to have your cake and eat it. They need to be great vocalists, no point stepping out without a good front man, no matter how good the band is, but they need to be at least tolerable on the personality/organisation side and have the same work ethic as the rest of the band. Our singist does the work and delivers the goods, so we can live with the occasional hissy fit and even have a bit of a laugh about a few years later after he's calmed down. 

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22 hours ago, pintspiller said:

Have things changed?

Nah. I have decided to knock it on the head. I have texted singer A to let him know that if he needs a bass player to give me a shout back. It`s a bit of a bugger as my main bands singer is leaving later this year and finding another female singer for that is proving a bit troublesome. But hey ho, first world problems.

Mr Ambient, you are so right! 👌

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