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uk_lefty

Interesting new project brewing, excitement builds

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Just wanted to share... I've had this idea in my head of fronting a three piece guitar bass and drums. I love my 80s covers but my band is a bit wary and is straying towards more Dakota, Sex on Fire and some other stuff that makes me cringe but drunk punters enjoy... That's fine, it's got its place. But I'm getting a bit bored of the set and I've noticed my playing is getting so sloppy, so I want a new challenge. 

I advertised on Thursday night for a guitarist and a drummer. Set out that I want to form a three piece to play covers and work up some originals, stick to 80s style songs but put on a harder edge, and gave three song examples so they know I don't mean Kylie and Rick Astley: Message in a Bottle, Dancing in the Dark, Just Died in Your Arms Tonight. Just three off a long list I've drawn up. 

I've had two quality guitarists answer, no drummers. Very different guitar styles. 

Guitar one: rock guitarist. Has sent me clips of playing in big function bands with multiple singers doing very professional disco hits. Other clips of him in a rock three piece where he's doing lead vocals which are OK, as good as most cover band vocalists and I've seen far worse, better than me also I'd say. This could be good: I know how to play with guitarists of his style and my vocal is not the strongest outside of my comfort zone (which isn't very big!) so sharing it out could be good to get a decent range of songs in. Lives a little bit further away from my preferred practice places but not insurmountable. 

Guitar two: echoey, lush sound scape type stuff. He gets it about filling the sonic space in a three piece. He's keen, he likes the 80s ideas, he lives nearer me, he's also left handed which could be an interesting gimmick or at least allow us to swap instruments every now and then if we feel the need (I've seen him play bass too). 

I've suggested to meet with each, see if we get on, play some songs together and then each of us has the chance to either say no thanks or go ahead. Hoping one of them works out and we can then record some two guitars and vocals stuff and get it out there to snag a good drummer. There's potential for two very different sounding bands though, with very different strengths. Will be interesting! Two bands isn't an option sadly... I'm still in my existing covers band, have a dep slot with a very similar covers band and two other ad hoc deps that could come in at any time once all is up and running again. 

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Sounds great, it’s not my music taste but a trio for me brought a whole new dimension to live music.  It’s raw, exciting and nowhere to hide.  The rhythm and natural understanding  between 3 musicians Is far more palpable.  I just wish I’d been in a trio sooner.  My main function covers band is (was-bloody Covid) my main band, but the garage psychedelic surf rock trio is my fun little side project.  It’s immense fun.  Enjoy and good luck finding a decent drummer 👍🏼 

 

Rich

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41 minutes ago, gt4ever said:

Sounds great, it’s not my music taste but a trio for me brought a whole new dimension to live music

My first ever bad was a trio with an incredible drummer and an insanely good blues-rock guitarist. It is my favourite format by far, as you say there is nowhere to hide! But that's the great thing, you don't have to hide, you don't have to avoid treading on toes like you do with two guitarists. 

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Sounds good, and go for guitarist 2, it will be like looking at a photo negative when the band are on stage!

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Referring to you @Happy Jack's recommendation on this FS post for anyone in a 3 piece band! 

...and apologies for the shameless plug!

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I am doing exactly this at the moment. The more feisty three piece vibe is so raw and exciting. You wanna hear our version of Rio...kills it. Funnily enough a lot of motown classics suit the style.. As the Jam knew all too well . 

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47 minutes ago, P-Belly Evans said:

I am doing exactly this at the moment. The more feisty three piece vibe is so raw and exciting. You wanna hear our version of Rio...kills it.

Yes I do! Put up a link if you like, great tune and would love to hear a different slant on it. 

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15 minutes ago, uk_lefty said:

Yes I do! Put up a link if you like, great tune and would love to hear a different slant on it. 

Not recorded yet unfortunately. Lock down and all that. The singer/guitarist has quite severe asthma so has been a bit worried about public indoor spaces etc. We are not even allowed to hook up at home either at the moment in Solihull. It has really put the brakes on everything. The thing I love about our project is that the singer is just too good at impressions so he can slip into the original singers voice at any time. You want to hear his Robert Smith and Bryan Ferry... I can't play for laughing. Can't wait to record it all asap

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3 piece is my preferred as well.

My guitarist fills a lot of sonic space - enjoy holding that low end down - keep it pure and enjoy!

Edited by Cuzzie
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We have a drummer! No idea of he's any good or not but he is literate, alive, and a drummer. He wrote a nice reply to the ad saying he's done all the usual covers but likes the sound of this project. That's three other people in the world, who play instruments, in my local area, who want to have a go. Going to try guitarist two with the drummer in the next few weeks and see where we get to. 

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This is looking good so far. Everyone is keen. Guitarist loves his gear: pedals, amps etc. Luckily I've seen video of him and he does know how to play, he hasn't got all the gear and no idea. Drummer has some good input too on set list. We are all on the same page so far with song ideas, general direction, and being realistic about the fact we will probably be lucky to cover the cost of strings and drum sticks from gig fees if they are even a thing in the post covid world. Now to rehearse and see if we can tolerate each others company. 

My only fear with these things is people getting too excited and there being a million opinions a day on new songs, effects, "hey you should listen to X bands cover of that song we should copy that!" but hopefully we can channel excitement and enthusiasm productively in to being really good at a few things and build from there...

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Why not start with a couple of lists. You could say that everyone picks about 3 songs each and you work on them.

Or - make a list, collate it all find maybe 7 songs you all love, and then 1 each that you really love and the others don’t mind.

10 songs is a set - may work

Then of course there is aspirational vs manageable!

Edited by Cuzzie

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I've got guitarist two and the drummer booked in for a session next Thursday. Have done some practice today for the 3 songs we will all use to check each other out. Vocals are rusty, especially while trying to memorise the bass line, but I have time now if work continues to allow me a few little breaks in the day here and there. 

Guitarist one contacted me out of the blue, he's only gone and got a drummer involved. Sent him a note to let him know that I'm checking out someone else first who has a very different style, wanted to be fully up front about this, and that I'd be back in touch at the end of next week. Hoping he takes that in the spirit it is meant and doesn't go all "thanks for nothing, you've wasted my time!" etc. as some would... 

Let's see what happens! 

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7 minutes ago, Cuzzie said:

Or you are now in 2 3 pieces!

Something I'd like to avoid... If my 5 piece ever resurrects. We did make a brief appearance on Saturday night but as a pub quiz team! 😂

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I make 11 pieces in total then - that’s a good extra large Pizza.

Of there are no gigs you can simultaneously be in 3 pub teams at the same quiz and not lose!

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So last night was the night. Three songs chosen, not very wisely, by myself. Guitarist and drummer both really sound people, no delusional muso types, good guys who had been in bands before and liked the sound of doing 80s covers. Winner. 

Evening started off OK though the shoddy PA in the rehearsal room and probably some nervousness from me meant vocals were appalling initially. Guitarist very good, tasteful use of effects to fill sonic space, drummer grinning like a monkey with two bananas while playing fills, rock solid timing, all good. 

I had a bit of a crisis of confidence 80s Tom Cruise style over my stinky poo vocals but we had a chat for a while, I relaxed, turned up the PA, turned down the amps, and the guys were really cool about it. We tried again and were a thousand times better. We didn't play anything perfectly but as a first time together and a bit of a jam there was definite potential for something to form. 

Lesson from the night, sage advice from guitarist over my vocals, summarised as: key thing being if you want to do it, if you don't want to then don't and get someone else, but if you do want to then work on it. He said "it's in there, you just need to work on pitching it right" and we agreed that two of the songs were probably out of my range anyway so to move on from one of those and work on the other as an aspirational thingy. However, then did well with a bit of Springsteen and another song we just bashed through too. 

Bass was no problem at all, but having not done lead vocals for over ten years and being with new people who may be deciding whether I'm a serial killer or a good chap to be in a band with I was probably deep down nervous, but after a chat and relaxing in to it, far far better. 

Somehow playing my unlined fretless helped too... No idea why, I've only had it 5 days and never had an unlined before! 

Will be getting together in the next few weeks to work on some more songs. 

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Vocals and bass - hardest gig in town - you’ll relax into it - maybe tuning half a step down etc. So the same pattern can be played at home and in rehearsal but it’s easier to sing.

Congrats on finding decent people-first step achieved

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So, second rehearsal last night. Vocal-wise I am only producing moments. I don't have the opportunity to practice properly, meaning at volume while playing bass and being able to listen to what I'm singing, so it's been more miss than hit. Guitarist knows a female singer, she's keen for this style of music. No ego bruising at all, I'm keen to get her in! A few messages have gone back and forth with her today and she's keen on our ideas list and sent us a list of 80s covers she's done before, 90 percent of which are a perfect fit, some are not so much, but that's OK. 

Musically getting on well with the guitarist and drummer. The drummer hasn't played a gig in 12 years but he's super solid, I really like the way he plays and he's a good guy to have in a band. He's easy going hut still has an opinion on things, so that's good. Guitarist is very keen, does some stuff great, others I thought he was missing something either in tone or approach but it's still early days and my singing has been shite so I can't criticise at all! 

It's building up nicely. Hope the singer is the real deal and then we can start building up a set list. 

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