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Dave Vader

Why be in a covers band?

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21 minutes ago, BigRedX said:

Question for covers bands - does your audience come specifically to see your band or do you play to whatever audience is already at the pub?

My experience both as a musician and as an audience member is that the vast majority of the audience come with the venue rather than the band, and unless the live entertainment is particularly dire they will be there regardless of who is playing.

I've found a combination of both depending on venue. We've done ticketed gigs where people specifically come to see us play 70's Glam covers and we've done the clubs etc where as you say some of the audience will be there anyway. Some clubs bok you because the band brings in a bigger audience than other bands. 

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12 minutes ago, FinnDave said:

Hang on, I'll pop upstairs and count the strings on my Precision..

1, 2, 3, 4….that's all it's got - same number as my three Jazz basses and my lovely Sandberg.

I've still got a six string, but only because no one has bought it yet! Not been played for four months now.

Aye you're back Dave. No getting away from it you are a 4 stringer. :laugh1:

 

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1 minute ago, dmccombe7 said:

Aye you're back Dave. No getting away from it you are a 4 stringer. :laugh1:

 

I can't argue with that - I tasted the forbidden fruit and survived, though!

  • Haha 1

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On 14/02/2020 at 12:57, Richard R said:

A friend of mine, fine classical musician, was deriding tribute bands. I pointed out that the Berlin Philharmonic was a arguably a Wagner/ Beethoven Tribute band, that the Huddersfield Choral Society only really records The Messiah,  and that the string quartet on the radio were specialists in one composer only. 

But in those cases the composer and the musicians involved when the pieces in question were written are now all dead.

Certainly when I have been to see any modern classical pieces, there has either been some performance input from the composer as one of the musicians or as the conductor, or the piece has been performed by the ensemble that it specifically written for.

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So we're good for Motorhead covers, yeah? 😀

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12 minutes ago, BigRedX said:

But in those cases the composer and the musicians involved when the pieces in question were written are now all dead.

So is David Bowie. I'm in a Bowie Tribute band. We interpret his songs and are not trying to look alike or sound alike - check our FB page and you'll see why (no apologies for attempting to get more likes)

I like playing with great music with really good musicians, which I get from this band.

As long as a band is playing well and I like the music, I'm not bothered who wrote it. Lot's of established artists cover other songs

Edited by ricksterphil
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1 hour ago, BigRedX said:

Question for covers bands - does your audience come specifically to see your band or do you play to whatever audience is already at the pub?

My experience both as a musician and as an audience member is that the vast majority of the audience come with the venue rather than the band, and unless the live entertainment is particularly dire they will be there regardless of who is playing.

The landlord of a pub should have done research and booked a band that the normal crowd will like. The crowd will tell him pretty quickly not to book the band again if they’re rubbish or he will sell a lot of beer if they’re good. Hence you get re-booked. 
 

If we’re being booked for a party then the person booking us will have seen us play and book is on that strength. 
 

Again, Covers and Originals are no different in that respect. If people are asking you to come back or asking if you do private gigs, then you’re doing something right. Otherwise, don’t blame the audience for not appreciating “your art”. 

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1 hour ago, Al Krow said:

What about real women? 

Are PJ basses beyond the pale?

And what if, like me, you don't happen to be pale? 

😁

49 minutes ago, dmccombe7 said:

So you're a tanned woman with a PJ then ? 

That's good enough for me. :laugh1:

Nope, there's nothing real about me. I'm just a figment of my own imagination. Now where did I put down that stuff that Dave was smokin'...

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Just chiming in. At this stage in my life I just need to be making money to supplement my part time job and avoiding the need for childcare. It also allowed me to secure a mortgage as I could show a regular income. For this end the cover band/ wedding band role has been perfect. A regular income in the music business is hard to come across but a busy wedding band provides that. It depends on your life situation I guess. 

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39 minutes ago, Mook said:

Just chiming in. At this stage in my life I just need to be making money to supplement my part time job and avoiding the need for childcare. It also allowed me to secure a mortgage as I could show a regular income. For this end the cover band/ wedding band role has been perfect. A regular income in the music business is hard to come across but a busy wedding band provides that. It depends on your life situation I guess. 

Spot on.

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I'd say I much prefer being in an originals band and think of myself as a bass player for originals...but I've had a lot of fun over the years playing covers.

Bit like @BigRedX, when I got into music covers bands were looked down on.  This was well before tribute bands, and everybody knew that real bands wrote their own music.  So apart from my first ever band with mates at school playing our favourite songs as we learned how to play, it was originals all the way.  The fact that some of the originals bands slipped in the odd cover didn't change this.  And the musical landscape was different - pubs wanted to put on bands playing originals.   Also a time when you were only in one band at a time and if you wanted to play with anybody else you'd have to quit.

Then about a decade or so ago, a mate asks me to join his punk covers band playing guitar, on the basis that their (pretty bad) guitarist had left, I owned a guitar, and it was punk rock so how hard could it be?  I was in an originals band at the time but it was no longer regarded as cheating.  the most fun I've ever had in a band - mostly because of my band mates, but a lot to do with how regularly we played and got paid actual money

Since then I've been in a series of overlapping covers and originals bands, and while my preference will always be for playing originals I'm not averse to playing covers with mates...though the last originals band I played with was depping for a mate's band, and despite the fact that all of the other band members had recorded the original versions, really I was playing covers of them

YMMV, but things I have learned:

  • Originals bands can play the odd cover, but they should be used sparingly, and work best when it's a song from a completely different genre played in your style
  • Covers bands should avoid playing originals - nobody wants to hear them
  • You can learn a lot about music, songwriting and structure from playing other people's songs (regardless of whether it's in a covers band)
  • You get better at playing your instrument the more you play live - technique doesn't care about who wrote the tune
Edited by Monkey Steve
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25 minutes ago, Monkey Steve said:

YMMV, but things I have learned:

  • Originals bands can play the odd cover, but they should be used sparingly, and work best when it's a song from a completely different genre played in your style
  • Covers bands should avoid playing originals - nobody wants to hear them
  • You can learn a lot about music, songwriting and structure from playing other people's songs (regardless of whether it's in a covers band)
  • You get better at playing your instrument the more you play live - technique doesn't care about who wrote the tune

All excellent points! 

When I was playing in an original band first time around, I wouldn't have considered doing a covers band on the side. Looking back, that was a mistake... 

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