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Kicked out of band...


mlauritsen

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1 hour ago, Jus Lukin said:

It is definitely worth getting acquainted with the vagaries of capos. They are used by guitarists all the way up the scale of ability, and you will definitely come across them in life. Some communicate in actual pitch, but some treat the capo as the nut, so a D pitch with a capo on the second fret might be called a C, as that is the 'shape' they play. Regardless of what might be the most logical way for them to do it for everyone's benefit, knowing how to account for capo use with the minimum of fuss is a valuable tool to have in the set.

 

I know there was a pun in there, by the way...

 

A good starting point would be in guitarists knew what a 'key' is - and that (a) it's more likely to be the last note of the song than the first (b) it might not be either and (c) it might change as the song goes along.

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I have no idea what a Capo does. Bit I also have come across a load of guitarists who call an Ab a G# regardless of the key and plenty who don't know the difference between a major or a minor chord. 

 

As long as they tell you what key you're in that should do. But might be worth doing a lot of ear training so you can hear intervals quickly. 

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27 minutes ago, Stub Mandrel said:

 

A good starting point would be in guitarists knew what a 'key' is - and that (a) it's more likely to be the last note of the song than the first (b) it might not be either and (c) it might change as the song goes along.

I was working on something without the music at the time and the guitarist insisted on telling me 'A#' etc and I thought - I cannot believe this piece is in C# maj, Db maj is far more likely... When I checked online later, yep, Db... but guitarist was fine dealing with 7 sharps... Maybe he wants to try D# major if he's that keen on sharps...

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2 hours ago, Jus Lukin said:

It is definitely worth getting acquainted with the vagaries of capos. They are used by guitarists all the way up the scale of ability, and you will definitely come across them in life. Some communicate in actual pitch, but some treat the capo as the nut, so a D pitch with a capo on the second fret might be called a C, as that is the 'shape' they play. Regardless of what might be the most logical way for them to do it for everyone's benefit, knowing how to account for capo use with the minimum of fuss is a valuable tool to have in the set.

 

I know there was a pun in there, by the way...

 

I agree, useful thing to be able to figure out without disturbing them while they're trying to step on the right pedal... 🙂

 

 

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5 hours ago, peteb said:

 

All that says to me is that you were good enough to be Phil Chen's replacement in a band, albeit temporarily! 

 

 

You're very kind. I still think I should have worked harder to make myself the first choice, but Phil Chen was a monster player back then. It was a bit of a David and Goliath situation for me.

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On 29/10/2021 at 14:56, mlauritsen said:

I don't want to waste any time complaining and being bitter, just wondering how other people deal with setbacks like this.

I was really enjoying playing with real people again, excited to get to know new musicians and new material (of the 10+ songs, I could have named Green Day, otherwise I had never heard of neither songs nor bands covered).

Really bummed out to have thrown myself into practising a lot more than usual, and apart from now knowing 10 songs I will never play again, it was pretty much wasted effort.

 

The first audition I went to, I learned (approximations of, no easy to get tab around 1986/7) seeral songs with help from my brother, a guitarist with a better ear than me, especially back then.

 

Met up with guitarist and drummer. It seems that the sings were 'just an indication of the sort of thing'. They bumbled around various things that may have been nascent songs or just jams At the tiem I felt out of my depth and almost relieved not to be asked back. Looking back now, I suspect they actually didn't know how to play those songs themselves... but at teh time it was a blow to my confidence.

 

Remarkably, I fell in with another bunch without muso pretensions, and we just clicked and had a great couple of years improving our skills and having fun, although we didn't set the world alight. When I moved away I was in a position to do much better at auditions and ended up in an originals band. I did get thrown out for 'being too widdly' - perhaps more that I wanted to play space rock, while the others wanted  a sort of garage/goth fusion.

 

By the next band, the audition was basically a pub interview followed by a session with the band leader who taught me a lot of their (Jam-like) bass lines, and passing the audition was basically just being able to play them properly! Left them when I change jobs/married in 96.

 

This time around it's been much easier as when getting into things I developed a voracious appetite for learning songs, without being precious about genre or style.

 

Over time, you develop a whole swathe of skills that help in getting into bands, that aren't simply being able to play difficult passages. Some of these are:

 

  • A better ear, so you can rapidly work out the key without watching the guitarist and pick up the basic riffs (play along to random songs on the radio). This means you can jam with anyone, even if you just pump out root notes.
  • The ability to identify the core parts of a song you need to do as original, where you can simplify and where you can improvise.
  • A subconscious 'library' of riffs and runs that make improvisation easier.
  • An intuition for anticipating chord changes, including hearing when the melody (often voice or guitar) is leading into a change.
  • Fitting your rhythm to the drummer.
  • Dynamics - when to ease back and when to dig in.

I'm sure others will suggest other things, but what they all have in common is that they come with practice, and the best way is learning lots of songs all the way through.

 

I suppose this is really a very long way to say learning those ten songs was not wasted effort!

 

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13 minutes ago, Stub Mandrel said:

I suppose this is really a very long way to say learning those ten songs was not wasted effort!

 

This.

 

Learning songs you'll never play live is still teaching you about rhythm, technique and chord changes. You are building up your library of riffs, licks and lines, which you will go on to adapt and play in many songs in the future.

Edited by chris_b
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2 hours ago, Stub Mandrel said:

 

The first audition I went to, I learned (approximations of, no easy to get tab around 1986/7) seeral songs with help from my brother, a guitarist with a better ear than me, especially back then.

 

Met up with guitarist and drummer. It seems that the sings were 'just an indication of the sort of thing'. They bumbled around various things that may have been nascent songs or just jams At the tiem I felt out of my depth and almost relieved not to be asked back. Looking back now, I suspect they actually didn't know how to play those songs themselves... but at teh time it was a blow to my confidence.

 

Remarkably, I fell in with another bunch without muso pretensions, and we just clicked and had a great couple of years improving our skills and having fun, although we didn't set the world alight. When I moved away I was in a position to do much better at auditions and ended up in an originals band. I did get thrown out for 'being too widdly' - perhaps more that I wanted to play space rock, while the others wanted  a sort of garage/goth fusion.

 

By the next band, the audition was basically a pub interview followed by a session with the band leader who taught me a lot of their (Jam-like) bass lines, and passing the audition was basically just being able to play them properly! Left them when I change jobs/married in 96.

 

This time around it's been much easier as when getting into things I developed a voracious appetite for learning songs, without being precious about genre or style.

 

Over time, you develop a whole swathe of skills that help in getting into bands, that aren't simply being able to play difficult passages. Some of these are:

 

  • A better ear, so you can rapidly work out the key without watching the guitarist and pick up the basic riffs (play along to random songs on the radio). This means you can jam with anyone, even if you just pump out root notes.
  • The ability to identify the core parts of a song you need to do as original, where you can simplify and where you can improvise.
  • A subconscious 'library' of riffs and runs that make improvisation easier.
  • An intuition for anticipating chord changes, including hearing when the melody (often voice or guitar) is leading into a change.
  • Fitting your rhythm to the drummer.
  • Dynamics - when to ease back and when to dig in.

I'm sure others will suggest other things, but what they all have in common is that they come with practice, and the best way is learning lots of songs all the way through.

 

I suppose this is really a very long way to say learning those ten songs was not wasted effort!

 

I agree with everything you say, this was a valuable experience, and looking at the list of songs, there are a couple which were are welcome in my book. 🙂

 

To your list of skills I would add developing a sense of whether you want to pass the audition, and learning to sense how secure your position in the group is.

 

I was much too quick to assume that I was in for life. It would have been much less shocking to get kicked if I hadn't just assumed that these people I didn't know much about had nothing going on they weren't telling me about.

 

And my ear needs to improve, that's job #1 now.

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I've not been in the position of auditioning for years, but I went to some try-outs back in the day and the bands really were shocking. They can be quite devious too.

At one such dis-spiriting event, I got my Rickenbacker out of the case and they said "He's the man for us" before I had even plugged it in. I had seen their set list and was fairly comfortable with most of it.

I played with them and took the job, then the next day they sent me an extra 6 songs by email to learn - all by The Arctic Monkeys. They were absolutely furious when I gave word back that doing their stuff wasn't what I signed up for and it turned out that was the way they were now going. They didn't bother to tell me that. For me it was a deal-breaker.

Edited by 12stringbassist
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Sometimes you can be joining a band in a transitional phase. Not always a bad thing, could be an opportunity to put your stamp on things. I'd stick around for a few rehearsals to get the feel of the dynamic as just because you've been sent one communication from one person, doesn't mean they hold all the cards. 

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On 03/11/2021 at 15:33, mlauritsen said:

 

Totally agree about learning progressions and patterns instead of fret positions or notes.

 

I was trying to do this but the capo threw me - it only changes the open strings, so e.g. when the guy plays an E, it's really an F# (or whatever), but when he plays a G, it's a G. Sounds to me like the chord progression is being mangled?

 

Knowing in advance would be good, but I think that requires a level of predictability and organization that many people don't want?

 

Depends whether he's playing chords or notes, and what he uses as a reference point. Our guitarist (who can't play barre chords, removing that complication) uses a capo on various frets and just tells us what chord he would be playing if there wasn't a capo, the keyboard player and I work it out from there. It's useful to be able to read a guitarist's fingers for chord shapes if you get thrown in at the deep end, which is even more fun when they're using a capo.

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On 04/11/2021 at 14:34, mlauritsen said:

your list of skills I would add developing a sense of whether you want to pass the audition, and learning to sense how secure your position in the group is.

 

I was much too quick to assume that I was in for life. It would have been much less shocking to get kicked if I hadn't just assumed that these people I didn't know much about had nothing going on they weren't telling me about

Auditions are a bit of a funny thing. I learned the hard way that one meeting and jam through a prescribed list of songs is ok, but the bad habits creep out after a few sessions. I had a guitarist who impressed enough at meeting 1, then slowly tried to take over, didn't learn the songs, just wanted to show off expensive gear, sat out some songs altogether, tried to push everyone else to do more... Muso types get too excited. When there's a new band they smell the opportunity to live out their teenage dream of rocking the stage with their favourite cover songs, that like in your audition don't always hang together as a coherent set (IMO some of those songs just don't work together for the same band to be playing unless they change the feel of those that don't fit). Everyone wants their spotlight Rock-God moment and nobody wants to play the four on the floor three chord wonders that have filled dancefloors for generations because "it's boring". Always had this argument with an old drummer. If a part is boring, IMO good! that means it's easy to remember, then if appropriate it's your responsibility to make it interesting without messing up the whole song. 

 

My advice would always be to go for an established band. They have a set, a following, recordings, and gigs. They also probably have their feet on the ground and realistic expectations. If joining a new venture it's ok to experiment with songs and sounds but build it towards an identity so it's not just a jukebox of "something for everyone". Something for everyone doesn't exist. I've never got to play some songs live that I have always, always wanted to (Fire by Crazy World of Arthur Brown) because it just wouldn't fit any band I've ever been in and would probably be a bit weird. But that's what a band needs to do, work together and work for their audience.

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On 03/11/2021 at 14:17, mlauritsen said:

 

Green Day - Basket Case (I like this one, fun to play)

Radiohead - Creep (Cool sing, and easy to play)

Seether - save today, driven under, wasteland

Rise Against - Hero of War

Thrice - Stare at the sun

Chris Isaak - Wicked Game

3 doors down - landing in london

cranberries - zombie (easy, so no problem)

 

None of these are very hard, it was more the quantity. Hence, I figured "give me a couple of weeks and i'll be fine", but I got the boot before I really made it.

 

Anyway, time helps, chalked down as an experience and moving on. 🙂

 

Seems like an odd mix of songs, looks to me like a band that doesn't know what it wants to be and who it's audience are. I can't quite see the crossover between people who'd watch a covers band playing Rise Against tunes and people who'd watch a covers band playing Chris Isaak!

 

You may have been presumptuous in assuming you were "in" but you may have also dodged what seems like a practice room project that may not have had legs anyway. 

 

From the tone of the thread, seems like it's been a learning experience that's given you some insight in to next steps and how to approach things in future, so it's by no means been wasted effort, just another step in the never ending journey of learning that we're all on with this stuff!

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On 04/11/2021 at 12:08, chris_b said:

 

This.

 

Learning songs you'll never play live is still teaching you about rhythm, technique and chord changes. You are building up your library of riffs, licks and lines, which you will go on to adapt and play in many songs in the future.

Definitely. I’ve got an audition in a couple of weeks time so am learning the bands last album. Whether I get the position or not I’ll have learned from learning those songs, how another songwriter works their craft, different basslines and how another bassist might choose their notes (higher to complement choruses, lower on solos for example). Will all be of help to me, plus I like the songs anyway. 

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