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Band singer / main songwriter's penchant for changing songs...

Discussion in 'Band Management [BG]' started by firststringer, Mar 11, 2008.

  1. ...and not just simple arrangement tweaking - I'm talking wholesale style changes.

    He'll take a song we've had "down" for a couple of years and which has always worked in a particular style, and he'll come in to practice and unveil a new way of doing it, often without discussing these changes beforehand. The problem is that 9 times out of 10 the new version does not work as well as the original.

    Ex: He'll claim that he is tired with "song A" sounding a particular way (let's say it's U2-ish) and he'll arbitrarily make it "into" a country style song. When I ask why, he'll say he thinks it sounds boring the old way, and that anyone who'd hear it at a show or what have you would agree. Now to me, this latter point is nonsense because its not as if we are established artists with some phenomenal following where people have heard these songs so many times an occasional style change might be kind of cool - we basically do maybe a dozen local (NYC) shows a year (at most) and almost always for whomever just happens to be at whatever bar / club on a given night.

    Now I'll go on record as stating that this guy is gifted inasmuch as he has a real ability to come up with good melodies and all, and because he is the singer / guitarist, he is more or less the de facto leader, at least at practice, but this habit of fixing what isn't broken is both time wasting and annoying.

    What happens is he'll suddenly get into another band, like Coldplay for instance, and everything we've ever done suddenly has to sound like them. Then, a few months later he'll rediscover Social Distortion and these same songs start sounding like they were written by Mike Ness...

    Has anyone else ever encountered a band mate who is always tinkering with songs, even when it is clear the tinkering is not helping?
  2. Spinal Tapper

    Spinal Tapper

    Nov 15, 2007
    I would try and discuss with him the importance of being an "original" band - but most importantly, having a consistently original sound.

    The first thing most people do when they critique a band playing out live is figure out "who" this band sounds like to them. Make sure you guys all are on the same page as in which direction your sound is trying to go.

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