Time to replace members?
Ok so I have a bit of a classic problem with a couple members in my band. Curious how others perceive the situation.
A little background...I live in South Korea (past 3 1/2 years). Drummer friend and I decided to form an originals prog/jam band last June. After a couple trips home (one for each of us) and trying out a few guitarists we finally found the right one about 6 weeks ago. Guitarist brought in his friend who plays keys.
Both guitarist and keys player are great musicians and we all click really well during jams. They're thoughtful regarding the songs and the guitarist has some good material he's been bring in. However, after practicing with them for 6 weeks some issues have arisen and in retrospect I wish I had handled them as they occurred.
First, keys player has got to be the biggest flake I've ever met in my life. Out of the 6 practices we've had that he's committed to, he's made it to 2 (yes! 2!) of them. And he always cancels same day with BS excuses. This costs us money as we have to rent practice rooms, but mostly it pisses me off with how disrespectful it is. Normally I'd just get rid of him, but he'll be hard or impossible to replace, plus his friend is our guitarist...so I'm thinking of giving him the courtesy of a single warning first.
Second, guitar never, ever, ever comes to practice prepared. It's obvious this guy does absolutely zero homework. On the plus side he's typically always early and pretty much never misses practices, and generally acts like he's committed. So I'm optimistic he can turn it around.
I have yet to speak to either of them. But obviously something needs to change, we were hoping to be gigging by now and instead we are still trying to put the finishing touches on a few from our first batch of songs (these were songs that were already mostly written too).
One complication is that I'm planning on this being my last year abroad, so I don't really have a lot of time to find a new line up...
On the other hand, there's another guitarist I met after we had settled on the guy above. He's looking and would probably be the perfect fit for this project. So I'm wondering if it's best to just axe the keys now and bring on this guy as a replacement, who would provide some insurance in case guitarist #1 doesn't shape up.
I see things as:
Option #1: Warn keys now and talk w/ guitarist
Option #2: axe keys, replace with guitarist #2, talk w/ #1
We're on a brief hiatus right now with the guitarist on vacation in Thailand until next week. So ideally this gets sorted out before next practice. I'm planning on calling keys on the phone next week and having a firm conversation and shooting guitar a polite email a little while after he gets back from vacation.
Thanks for reading! I'd appreciate any thoughts, and I'll let you know how it turns out.
Start side project with new guitarist.
"Divide your portion to seven, or even to eight, for you do not know what misfortune may occur on the earth."
I'm of the opinion that, if you like the playing of the key and guitar #1 player, that merits the courtesy of a conversation with them. Especially since you say yourself "you should have addressed it sooner". Address it now, and see what the response is. If they fix it, great. If not, you get rid of them because, in the end, their behavior is not satisfying your needs any way you look at it.
Talk to both of them. Let them know how you're feeling about things. Let them know things need to change. Wait a couple of practices. If things haven't changed, tell them to hit the bricks.
maybe start a second band with different members - later on, use the best players from both. Best wishes and good luck
Option #1. If you don't see immediate changes, option #2.
Once a flake always a flake.
My old drummer was like that. He would cancel practice the day of, always after I had already driven well out of my way to get there. Practice space was 60 miles from my house so it was basically 120 miles out of my way, 2hours in driving, gas money, etc. I would go to a different office for work on practice day just to make the trip to the practice space shorter. If we didn't have practice there was NO reason for me to go to that office.
He was also horrible with time management. He'd go to the bathroom and come back 30 minutes later with a sandwich or something. I wanted to punch him...
Definitely talk to them about it...
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