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Cheating on your band mates

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My band gigs roughly once a month. I find that I really look forward to gigging when it’s once a month, it keeps it fresh and every gig is an event rather than a chore. It’s perfect for me, as it allows me time to do my other musical projects (songwriting, solo acoustic gigs, home recording etc). I have a wife and two young children and it’s good that weekends and therefore family time aren’t always eaten up by gigs. Works for me. 

Our singer, however, is single, has no children and would gig every night of the week if he could. He’s been asked to join another band (on rhythm guitar) and he asked me and the man who hits drums if we were ok with this? It’s cool with me; as I said I do other stuff and am in fact considering doing an acoustic duo with a female singer for occasional gigs as a sideline. As long as our band remains the priority and his other band’s activities (if he joins) don’t interfere with our activities then no problem. 

The man who hits drums however took it pretty badly. ‘How dare they ask you to join another band? Trying to nick our singer? It’d be like cheating on your band mates! No, if you’re in a band that’s the band you’re in and you concentrate on that...’ etc. ad infinitum.

 Our drummer probably ‘needs’ our band more than any of us, but nevertheless I was surprised by his outburst. 

As I said it’s no issue for me, as long as there’s no conflict of interests. Does anyone else have a problem with one of your band’s members being in other bands? Is it ‘cheating’, as TMWHD puts it? I’m sure many of us who are in bands do other musical projects; are your fellow band members ok with that? 

Edited by BrunoBass

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A conflict of interest will occur sometime in the future, it’s what happens when  musicians play in more than one band.

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Sounds like your drummer has wildly overreacted. If the second band doesn’t conflict with your current one then there is no problem, surely.

Edited by CameronJ
Massive typo!
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IME a conflict of dates and priorities will happen sooner or later, either naturally despite everyone’s best efforts or will be manufactured by someone. 

Best to talk it through with the drummer first and see if he is prepared to compromise and explore options together to keep everybody happy when diary clashes do occur. 

Good luck! 😎

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If only being in a band was just about playing music.

Introduce people into the mix and it can get:-

- Complicated 

- Interesting 

- Wonderful 

- Frustrating 

- Enriching 

- Painful 

- Challenging 

- Costly

- Annoying 

- The best thing

- The worst thing

🤪 

I think it’s good to have different musical experiences, it should mean you bring something fresh to the “regular” band. 

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Any musician worth his salt and with time on his hands is often in more than one band. Just remember the rule re: booking clashes.... "First in the diary".

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"man who hits drums" - fantastic!

I reckon the mods should add this to the swear filter when anyone types "drummer".  Although it may need to be "person who hits drums" in the interests of equality....

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It's simple in theory - At pub/club level, you're free to play with whomever you like.  Whatever goes in the diary first gets your services.

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As long as your priority remains your band then you should be able to do what you like and no one should begrudge the others their opportunities. On the other hand, I don't see how you can keep a band together on one gig a month. I have to say that expecting band members not to have side projects in  these circumstances is a pretty big ask.

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59 minutes ago, BrunoBass said:

Is it ‘cheating’,

if you give broad availability and your bandmates don't, it's not cheating. 

If you give limited availability and your bandmates don't, then it's cheating. 

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can't see a problem - the concept of only being in one band and "cheating" on your band mates is sooo last century. But if the singer is doing this because he isn't playing enough gigs with you, why does the drummer think that he'll pick your band if made to choose?  I'd tell him (the drummer) to suck it up and stop thinking that he gets to tell somebody what they can or can't do when they aren't playing with your band.  It's pathetic.  And if I was the singer I wouldn't have asked, I'd have politely informed your lot what I was doing, it wouldn't be a debate. 

The singer will need to sort out his priorities, but I've got mates who are in two or three signed, gigging/touring bands and they never have a conflict, they just allocate time to the bands as required. Mind you, they typically have a pecking order for any conflicts, some bands being regarded as more important than others, but will stick to the "first gig in the diary wins"

I've done it at a lower level too and it was pretty easy for day to day things like practices.  How I would have loved to have enough gigs for there to be a conflict!

 

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By this drum hitters reckoning , back in the late 80s-early 90s that would've made me a music whore where I was in four different music combos including a duo and a samba band.

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3 minutes ago, Monkey Steve said:

can't see a problem - the concept of only being in one band and "cheating" on your band mates is sooo last century. But if the singer is doing this because he isn't playing enough gigs with you, why does the drummer think that he'll pick your band if made to choose?  I'd tell him (the drummer) to suck it up and stop thinking that he gets to tell somebody what they can or can't do when they aren't playing with your band.  It's pathetic.  And if I was the singer I wouldn't have asked, I'd have politely informed your lot what I was doing, it wouldn't be a debate. 

The singer will need to sort out his priorities, but I've got mates who are in two or three signed, gigging/touring bands and they never have a conflict, they just allocate time to the bands as required. Mind you, they typically have a pecking order for any conflicts, some bands being regarded as more important than others, but will stick to the "first gig in the diary wins"

I've done it at a lower level too and it was pretty easy for day to day things like practices.  How I would have loved to have enough gigs for there to be a conflict!

 

@BrunoBass, get your Drummist to read this.  This pretty much covers it!

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I was up to 5 bands earlier this year and it wasn't actually the conflict that people might think. Upon reflection, it had potential to get difficult but I think with a bit of juggling three is perfectly manageable, depending upon home life, work etc. 

If you are straight with people, I don't see a problem. Plus it's easier to forget that playing with other people actually makes you a better player. 

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I think the only time it can be a problem is if one band wants to be gigging every weekend. At that point unless the other band only wants to gig mid-week how can It work.

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As posted a couple of days ago on another thread; I folded my band back in May due to the singer and keyboardist involving themselves in other projects and thus leaving themselves unavailable for gigs from June to September - peak gigging season in my area.

I had been clear and up-front before they joined the band and with several reminders along the way that we would be averaging 2 gigs per month, but their unavailability meant we were turning gigs away and averaging about 0.5 gigs per month by the time I'd had enough and pulled the plug.

So multiple bands can seem ok and manageable in theory,  but can end up causing serious problems in practice.

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Errr am I missing something here? 

How can this be considered "cheating" when they guy has been upfront and asked for opinions , thoughts and feelings about them playing with others outside the current band?

Not consulting,  discussing, or putting the idea forward openly etc..... just simply going off to do other stuff with no consideration which could cause issues down the line is what I would consider "cheating".

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What's with this "I folded the band" stuff? If you are only playing 1 or 2 gigs a month then you need band members who don't mind that level of inactivity. If you have guys who want to gig more than that then you need deps or different players.

Nobody owns anyone. You can't dictate how often other guys will be allowed to play and punish them if they want to play more.

Edited by chris_b
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1 hour ago, chris_b said:

I don't see how you can keep a band together on one gig a month. 

Why not? 

Essentially we’re a hobby band that plays pubs in and pretty close to our home town. We have a bit of a local following, and we treat it seriously and with professionalism, but we’re not earning a living from it or anything 😊

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34 minutes ago, BrunoBass said:

Why not? 

Essentially we’re a hobby band that plays pubs in and pretty close to our home town. We have a bit of a local following, and we treat it seriously and with professionalism, but we’re not earning a living from it or anything 😊

yeah, I tend to agree - if everybody is happy with one gig a month (and as with the OP, that will suit a lot of people) then that's fine. I've been in plenty of bands that have played a lot less.

But equally I can't see an issue with anybody who wants to be playing more gigs going off and doing something else on their non-gigging weekends

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if he's anywhere a decent drummer he'll have no trouble finding another band if he wants to play more often, of course this increases the chances of conflicts, band politics eh, we're no better than that Westminster lot 😊

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Everyone should be free to do other projects but it will come to a head when the inevitable diary clash happens.

Our tub thumper who plays with two other bands was adamant that whats in the diary first is the gig he will play.

One of his other bands put loads of pressure on him to blow our gig that had been booked for nine months so that they could do a one hour set at a beer festival as it's a really important gig (Beer Festival WTF !!) for the band.

We had to get a dep and have two rehearsal. The dep was good but it was still a sub standard gig.

We're looking for a new drummer.

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I am still playing in two bands and have done precisely 6 gigs this year, not many dairy clashes to be had there then!!

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If singer dude wants to gig as much as possible, and others in the band want to do one a month, this will happen, and in all honesty, singer might jump ship altogether. Such is band life....

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