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ambition and self-esteem

Discussion in 'Band Management [BG]' started by Shoonk, Feb 16, 2003.

  1. I recently joined a band with two guys, neither of whom i have ever played with beofre. we already have 2 gigs lined up-one in less than a month and we have no songs, and have had two 5 hour practices. I have 3 main problems:

    1) my guitarist has low self-esteem, and everything the drummer and I do he believe that he is not good enough, or that he "sucks" although, he definetly is not, and we try and tell him but he doesnt listen and just gets frusterated with himself, and just tells me to solo ALL the time.

    2) We have no lead singer. I can sing, and I'd absolutly love and be willing to sing, but i dont have the guts to ask them if i can sing because they hired me as a bassist, and because i dont think they want a female singer.

    3) the third problem is the same problem i encounter in almost every band I have been in. sexism. I'm either kicked out of teh band because I'm a girl, or get hit on, like a groupie at every practice. I think my guitarist spends more time plotting a direct route into my pants than plotting our our next song.

    I can't leave this band now. I'm desperate to be in a band, and this is the only shot I have. How do I get my guitarist to play? I know i should be greatful hes not over-ego buldge type...but I wish he would just pick up his guitar and play. how do i ask them if i can sing? and how do i tell them that just because i stand at the front of the stage not to check out my body?

  2. Be selfish, ask...that's about all you can do if you want to get what you want. I have trouble with this, but ASK them, otherwise you probably won't get what you want. There's no real way HOW to ask them. Just sort of do it directly, be firm though. "We don't have a lead singer, and I am perfectly willing to sing. Why don't I sing until we can find someone to do it." If you phrase it right, they might just decide to let up and let you do it.

    As for the guitarist self-esteem problem, it's one of two things.
    1) He's trying to get sympathy from you in the hopes of winning you over. At the same time he could be fishing for compliments and just taking it too far. or
    2) he could genuinely have confidence problems. In which case, he's going to have to face them down. The only way to gain self-esteem is to accomplish something. Don't LET him say he can't play. FORCE him to come up with parts! Be persistent, if he thinks he isn't good enough then tell him to practice. He really has no excuse; if you and the drummer are really so much better than him, then this is a prime chance for him to improve his skills. The reason I got to the point where I am (aside from good looks and charm) is by playing with people who were years ahead of me in terms of skill and ability.

    As for the sexism issue...all I can say is don't take crap and learn to kick guys' asses. Unfortunately, there's no real way to get around it. Just be tough and demand respect, then you'll get it.

    Hope this helps.

    Good luck w/ the new band!!
  3. Amethska


    Jan 27, 2003
    NJ, USA
    Man, I'd kick his ass. It's the kind of thing I gotta deal with in school where I'm the only girl in certain situations... >.<

    I'm sure there's gotta be other people around to play with, it's just a pain to find them... Dunno, if you're willing to put your energy into that.
  4. Munjibunga

    Munjibunga Total Hyper-Elite Member Gold Supporting Member

    May 6, 2000
    San Diego (when not at Groom Lake)
    Independent Contractor to Bass San Diego
    To tell them that would be a waste of breath. But, if you insist, tell them, then play like they're obeying you.
  5. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member

    I was in a similar situation a long time ago - so there was a guitarist/songwriter in a band I played in and we wrote songs together, but he really lacked confidence at the time, although the drummer, singer and I liked what he was doing.

    So we had everything ready and just before the first of our gigs he pulled out - left! But it wasn't too bad as we got another guitarist who was better and more confident - played him tapes, explained the songs and he fitted in OK and the gigs went well.

    I think the point is that if you have gigs waiting, then there will be people out there who are only too hungry to play. And if you have everything set up then you can actually look for the better players and bring the whole level of the band up.

    Nobody's irreplaceable and there are lots of guitarists about!!
  6. wulf


    Apr 11, 2002
    Oxford, UK
    That's not quite true, is it? It might be the only opportunity available at the moment but there will be plenty of others. If the guys in the band can't treat you with respect, then the time you would have wasted at practises can be spent on building your skills (based on what you said, including learning a bunch of cover songs and working on singing and playing them at the same time).

  7. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member

    Of course I agree with Wulf that you will get lots of "shots" at playing in bands on the next few years/decades!! ;)

    But I think what I was trying to say is that you maybe should look at the situation and decide what you like about it and what you don't.

    So if you like the drummer - you don't mention this - then how about starting a band with him?

    I thought of another solution which may help - how about suggesting getting another guitarist? Lots of bands have two guitarists and this could help with your existing guy's confidence or may well get rid of him - but if you have another guitarist then he/she could fill in and keep the band going. :)


    Most places have more than enough guitarists - everybody wants to play guitar - but bassists/drummers are harder to find
    - get a good thing gong with the drummer, get soem gigs and guitarists will beat a path to your door!! :D
  8. thrash_jazz


    Jan 11, 2002
    Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
    Artist: JAF Basses, Circle K Strings
    What he said. This is NOT the only shot you have.

    Doesn't sound like this is a very pleasant situation to be in. The sexism in particular sounds very unprofessional and could easily lead to a bad vibe or two.

    I would suggest not sticking around. There will be plenty of other chances.
  9. the problem is that the drummer and guitarist are are 2-in-1 type of deal...so i cnat steal the drummer. no one wants to start a ska band....i wish i could....no one likes ska....one day...ska will be it...i will start a ska band...and get out of grade 9....and pigs will fly...and hell will freeze over...and the toronto mapel leafs will win the stanley cup again.....heehee
  10. Why the hell is the drummer putting up with the guitarist if he keeps whining?

    Also...if the pigs were on a catapult....

    AND! Hell is pretty frozen over (read the Divine Comedy)