Jump to content
TimR

How fit do you need to be in your band?

Recommended Posts

Played a small fete on Saturday evening. Just a half hour slot, sharing the day with other bands. It was touching 35’C and we were in a sun trap on the back of a lorry trailer. 

After about 10mins I was just getting into the swing of things and moving about quite a bit (although the video shows otherwise, probably subject for another thread). The singer was going great, but the guitarist and drummer started to seriously flag.

Now, obviously it was the heat, but how energetic is your show, how old are you, and what do you do, if anything, to maintain gig level fitness? 

Edited by TimR

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Well in my mind I’m leaping and running around the stage whereas in reality I’m shuffling aimlessly from one foot to the other. But I do dig in hard for the whole gig, none of this dynamics business, full on all the time, plus full on backing vocals so do need to be able to maintain that for an hours set if required. I’m 53, I do go to the gym, try to go at least 3 times a week but the main thing I find is to stay hydrated. If I’ve not drunk enough water I find the gigs harder so that’s my main thing, make sure I drink enough water both before and during the gig.

  • Haha 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It’s quite interesting how much movement you need to do to make it noticeable. Probably what feels like running about like a loon is quite sedate from the audience point of view. 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Lozz196 said:

make sure I drink enough water both before and during the gig.

Now I'm the wrong side of 40 this is definitely high on my priorities. The only problem then, of course, is inevitably needing a slash about 20 minutes in!

  • Like 1
  • Haha 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

depends how much you put into it, in a local 60's covers band I know the bass player has serious health issues, overweight, he can't even put his own socks on, but does 60 odd 90 minute gigs a year, but just stands there and plays, no movement.

On the subject of movement I once read somewhere, the bigger the stage the more you have to move to get noticed, exaggerate everything by 10 otherwise it looks like you're not doing anything

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I spent 26+ years in a KISS tribute, wearing many kilos of body armour, 7" stack heeled boots, a mahogany and maple bass, wig, make-up..... I breathed fire and had flames and pyrotechnics going on behind me. All my movements had to be BIG and exaggerated to fit the part I was performing....

Our shows were regularly 2 hours and I used to get VERY hot under such conditions - as you can imagine. I drank copious amounts of water to stay hydrated but I wasn't (still am not) particularly fit - however I have a 6ft 3" solid build and my body is reasonably strong. I was SERIOUSLY knackered after ever show though.....  lol!

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
39 minutes ago, Johnny Wishbone said:

Now I'm the wrong side of 40 this is definitely high on my priorities. The only problem then, of course, is inevitably needing a slash about 20 minutes in!

That's the danger with me too! Drinking enough to keep you hydrated but not too much so an hour long set is a problem. We all take water onstage with us, and some get through quite a bit. I just use it for when my mouth gets dry after doing a lot of BV's.

Gigging certainly doesn't get any easier as you get older, that's for sure. The main members of my band are all in their 50's and 60's, and although we're no gym bunnies we manage to stay reasonably ok. Our singer did have a heart problem a couple of years ago, but (touch wood) we seem to have got over that setback. With us, it's not just the gigs (2x60 min sets) but also the travelling that can take it's toll. Doing 300 odd miles like we did last weekend in 30+ degrees and then setting up / doing the show / packing down etc makes for long days with little respite.

Doesn't help either having The Stones back on tour, with 75 year old Jagger still doing his thing like a man half his age....😄

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
7 minutes ago, casapete said:

Doesn't help either having The Stones back on tour, with 75 year old Jagger still doing his thing like a man half his age....😄

I suspect he doesn’t even carry his mike onto the stage, let alone help with setting up the PA. 😂

  • Haha 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have a nice floor fan that keeps me cool. My current band's first 5 gigs were in over 35C temps and a couple with high humidity. Sweat was pouring off us. Drummer is 64, I'm 57, guitarists are 56 and 44, seems typical for this thread hehe. On the gigs where I took the fan I was cool as a cucumber. People were intrigued why my shirt bottom was flapping around lol

Edited by bazzbass
  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Agree fully with the drink plenty of water advice. We are 5 piece covers band with ages ranging from 44 (singer) to 65 (drummer) and we are all no more than average in terms of fitness. Keeping hydrated when playing is preferred especially in the summer and especially just this last weekend. We tend to play two one hour sets in a normal gig situation. I find playing is energizing and gives me a real boost. Worst part of any gig and were fitness is needed is breaking everything down and packing away to start the journey home. Its usually after midnight and there are nearly always stairs to negotiate...!!! 

Edited by CJBassman64
Typo

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

you euros have been hit with high temps this summer, but geez, 35C is about it isn't it? I used to think 40C was hot, but this year we reached 47.7C ! time to find another planet coz this one is getting too hot ! When it gets too hot in Sweden, you know we're doomed

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
7 minutes ago, bazzbass said:

you euros have been hit with high temps this summer, but geez, 35C is about it isn't it? I used to think 40C was hot, but this year we reached 47.7C ! time to find another planet coz this one is getting too hot ! When it gets too hot in Sweden, you know we're doomed

Just keep planting the trees...!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

57, at least six stone overweight, cardiac arrhythmia and high-blood pressure. I think you can work out just how energetic my contribution to 'the show' is

  • Haha 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I do a lot of walking in my job and go hill walking most weekends. That's really good for keeping me fit and sets me up for that night's gig. I practice intermittent fasting which isn't for everyone but this is the best I have felt in years. I also stopped drinking alcohol last February.

Our singer has a personal trainer and our guitarist goes to a boot camp 3 mornings a week.

Conversely, our singer is lactose intolerant and has a secret vice of drinking double cream straight out of the fridge. A couple of weeks ago he found a smoked sausage in the boot of his car that had been there for a few days, opened and it had been warm outside. He ate it and not surprisingly was incredibly sick.

 

We all help with the loading & unloading of equipment and I try to drink as much as I can during the gig without reaching the tipping point. I have a fan pointing up at me as well.

The packing away is the easy part for me as I am pumped full of adrenaline and hyper for the next few hours 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 minutes ago, Delberthot said:

I practice intermittent fasting

Me too, between meals.....and snacks

  • Haha 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I used to do 5 45 minutes sets every 2 to 3 weeks. I am pretty energetic and playing the bass is a relatively low energy expenditure activity. Just my fingers and occasionally my feet got a bit tired. Gigging is like life, if you cannot get through your normal day to day without panting you probably are not fit enough. If you can walk up 3 flights of stairs without too many issues your are probably fine :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

When you are hot, drink water. . .  lots of it.

If the guys in the band were flagging after 10 mins they should be seriously worried about their general health.

 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

As a couple of posts have pointed out, a good floor standing fan is essential especially given the recent temperatures in the UK. I use mine a lot, from around March to October generally, and even on setting 1 (of 3) it makes a helluva difference to my wellbeing onstage. Caught the singer trying to angle it more his way the other night though 🤨.

Mine is something like this one, best £30 I've spent in along time.

https://www.screwfix.com/p/18-floor-fan-220-240v/3939X?tc=SA1&ds_kid=92700038617586210&ds_rl=1241687&ds_rl=1245250&ds_rl=1249404&ds_rl=1245250&gclid=EAIaIQobChMI8bCi772W4wIVq73tCh1lxwb5EAQYBCABEgJdmvD_BwE&gclsrc=aw.ds

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

My current band is energetic. I'm the youngest at 46 and we're leaping around, jumping off drum risers etc. I work out every day and usually hit around 15000 steps a day according to my Fitbit. I remember my first show with them; my Fitbit sent me a notification during the gig to say "it appears you are having a workout!"

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
4 hours ago, hiram.k.hackenbacker said:

Say what you will about Simmons, but it does make you think how on earth he’s still doing it. He’s 70 next month!

Under all that kit and make up there's probably a young dep!

  • Haha 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I fail to se how engeretic I could actually be whilst holding a bass and singing BVs. I used to play rugby when I was younger and played touch rugby untill wel into my 40s, and have occasional guilt induced trips to the gym.  Thres no way a 2 hour gig is going to be as energetic as a 45 minute trip to the gym.  I sweat - a lot - when exercising or when playing but I've done gigs when the temperature has been in the 40s and the humidity has pretty much been 100%.  No amount of fitness would help, but water does.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I ruined my hands (especially wrists) in the 80's riding a road bike. They are cold in nearly every temperature, except sauna. I prefer hot.

As I am also "seasoned", I do swim somewhat. Today my exercise was 2000 meters. The last 200 m took 2.48, which is not that bad for my age.

I am also a true bassist, so I can not walk and chew bubble gum at the same time. During my playing I need to concentrate on standing still, too. I do not want to fall over...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
6 hours ago, hiram.k.hackenbacker said:

Say what you will about Simmons, but it does make you think how on earth he’s still doing it. He’s 70 next month!

Yup. I can couch for the fact that they are still one of the hardest working live bands in the business. That stuff weighs a ton!! I'd had enough of wearing it by my mid 40's! 😂

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm less energetic on stage than I used to be, which is a combination of:

Being older

Being more tired

Using non-moulded, wired IEM

As a result I move about less, but not Tool levels of stationary

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.



×
×
  • Create New...