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being in two bands

Discussion in 'Band Management [BG]' started by matito, Mar 11, 2006.

  1. I'm currently doing bass in one band, on average we jam about once a week, and do the occasional gig.

    now I have an oppurtinity to do guitar in this other band with a female singer/songwriter who has some great songs, wants to rehearse once maybe twice a week and getting into some gigging.

    Has anyone ever been in this kinda situation before?
    I think i can manage being in two bands, but I just think what happens if gigs clash and stuff like that. the guys in my first band would proberly be dirty at me etc...

    have people done this sorta thing and it has worked out well?
    or will this be a potential mistake and should stick to one band
  2. Vorago

    Vorago (((o)))

    Jul 17, 2003
    Antwerp, Belgium
    I'm in the exact situation, so I'd like to hear some opinions here.
  3. Firstly, I think the word is "play" and not "do".:D :D

    Secondly, being in multiple bands is not a problem in my experience as long as everyone involved in both/all bands knows up front from day one that it is a "first come first served" situation so if band #1 has a gig in the diary for a particular date, band #2 becomes "unavailable " on that date.


    Go for it!!;) ;) ;) ;)
  4. rllefebv


    Oct 17, 2000
    Newberg, Oregon
    Exactly! Keep a calendar FOR YOURSELF, keep everyone informed as soon as there is a change. It is also helpful if you have a backup to call with either band for when the inevitable 'Double-Booking' arises...

    I'm the type who likes to have two somewhat different playing situations going, so this kind of stuff is vital... Some bands are not open to the idea of a member being in two bands, so get that on the table immediately :)

  5. Ryan L.

    Ryan L. Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Aug 7, 2000
    West Fargo, ND
    I have juggled playing in three bands in the past. I have my main one, then another project with me, the drummer, and different guitarists, vocalist, and a keyboard player, and a band that I do fill-in work for (that ended up being more than just fill in work).

    Keeping a calender is a must, IME. That way when a phone call comes in about a certain date, you know if you are available or not. It really isn't that hard to do, if you are organized, and have the time to do it, and do it right.

    I would rather play in one band and play good in it, than play in two to three of them and do it half assed. So make sure you have the time to commit to what it takes as far as learning songs and rehearsing. My current situation keeps me pretty busy with work and the two bands I currently work with, so aside from occasional fill-in work, I am not out looking for anything else right now.
  6. DaftCat


    Jul 26, 2004
    Medicine Hat
    I play in two bands, do sound for yet another, co host a jam(part time) and in the shed with an original three piece rock project. If I can juggle that, so can anyone else...with time management.

  7. Edwcdc

    Edwcdc I call shotgun!

    Jul 21, 2003
    Columbia MD USA
    I'm currently in two bands. I have my regular gig that place once a week sometimes twice. I also play with another band that is 50% cover and 50% original. That second band is more of a recording situation for me. I treat it like a hired gun situation. Since my main band plays mostly Fridays, I try to get the band leader for the second band to book gigs on Saturdays. So far it hasn't been a problem but I could leave the second band and not feel too guilty.
  8. Keeaumoku


    Dec 29, 2004
    As others before me have suggested... you first have to be up-front about your situation with everyone involved... that way no one can come back and accuse you of being dishonest and/or deceitful... :scowl:

    ...I actually play with three different bands. I have my 'regular' band, and we play most Fridays and Saturdays. One of the other bands will call me whenever they need a fill-in bass player, and if I can cover it, I will. I also get calls for other situations... just call me a bass whore... ;)

    The third band is what I like to call my "work-in-progress" band. These guys, as well as myself, have 'professional' day jobs, which will always take priority over music. The guitar guy is a dentist by day, so he has to be selective as to when he can play a gig. It wouldn't be a good idea for him to pour himself into bed at three in the morning, only to have his hands in someone's mouth some five hours later! Since he opens his practice Saturday mornings, he tends to balk at Friday night gigs, too. The drummer works evening shift... he's a former NFL o-lineman from the mid-80s, and is now a supervising guard at our prison. He has so much seniority (like so many jobs here in Paradise, his is a union job...), that he says he can manipulate a night off in order to make a gig... as long as he has enough advance notice. Our frontman/singer is a big-shot executive with our electric company (he and the dentist are childhood friends... :eyebrow: ). As far as he's concerned, I think his participation with our band is a secret at his workplace, but I cannot be sure, and I continue to wonder... :meh:

    With my 'WIP' band, it's looking more and more like we are a 'hobby band'. I say this because we got together back in June-05. We've been 'practicing' in my 10K sq.ft. warehouse on Sunday afternoons and most Monday evenings ever since! We have a huge song list... some 80+ songs, and our music is as tight as a spandex thong on Oprah Winfrey... (imagine that...:rollno: ).

    I feel fortunate to have hooked-up with my 'regular' band, which happened just this past January. They needed to replace their bassist, as he has some serious health issues... :( I was getting a little frustrated with my 'WIP' band due to the understood limitations as far as gigging is concerned. I am the 'geezer' in all three bands, but I also have years of experience beyond all of them, which they all love to draw upon... and I enjoy sharing my advice and stories at every opportunity!

    ...so, where in the heck is this diatribe going?

    IMHO... it's okay to be a 'bass whore'... that way I can fulfill the needs and desires of another band that requires my services... As far as my 'WIP' band... I can keep my chops up to par, while offering these guys whatever help/tips that I possibly can... and with my 'regular' band... all I can say is, "Thank you, Jesus!"... 'cuz they came along at the perfect time... :D I'm back to having fun, and, oddly enough, I haven't seen an ATM machine since sometime back in February... ;)
  9. Woodchuck


    Apr 21, 2000
    Atlanta (Grant Park!)
    Gallien Krueger for the last 12 years!
    I'm currently in 3 bands. It can be done. Like they said, just let evryone know your schedule in advance.
  10. Dkerwood


    Aug 5, 2005
    I don't know if it counts, but I'm involved in a lot of projects all the time. I have my "main band", which usually takes over Thursday nights for practice and Friday nights for gigs.

    I'm playing in 3 church praise bands - Saturday night, Sunday morning, Wednesday night... 3 different churches, 3 different styles, sometimes 3 different instruments...

    I play in a jazz band, and I'm also working on a jazz recital for my second degree...

    Oh, and I also like to record cross-genre covers of popular music in my spare time.

    My regular gigs usually take precedence, but if I need to cancel them for the "main" gig, no problem. Makes it so I play music every day of the week, covering a huge range of musical genres.
  11. seanm

    seanm I'd kill for a Nobel Peace Prize! Supporting Member

    Feb 19, 2004
    Ottawa, Canada
    I'm not quite as busy as some here. I tend to average one gig a week in the "warmer" months. Only about one gig a month in the winter.

    We keep a calendar next to the phone and I put a happy face on the days I have a gig. That way both my wife and I know when I have gigs.

    This works because I have never scheduled more than one gig a day. A short gig for me is 4 hours.
  12. pff. thats nothing my friend is in 3 bands. I even know someone who is in 5 bands (all with record contracts)
  13. coop


    Jun 22, 2002
    I've never been able to make it work. There is inevitably going to be a gig come up that pays really well, or at a club where #2 band has been wanting to play for a long time, and you are already booked with #1 band. Then come the hard feelings, guilt trips, etc.... Even though you have been up front about it, someone is still gonna get their drawers in a twist.

    At leat that's been my experience, YMMV
  14. rllefebv


    Oct 17, 2000
    Newberg, Oregon
    As soon as a 'Guilt Trip' enters into the scene, I always ask the person if they are actually asking me to make a choice. If the answer is 'Yes' then my mind is easily made up...

    'Booked First' means Booked First... If the double-booking in question is far enough in advance that one band can re-schedule then it's all good. If not, then 'Sorry'...

  15. plexibass


    Jun 30, 2005
    i have a friend in dallas who plays drums in 5 bands. he's busy but at least he plays every night.
  16. Snarf


    Jan 23, 2005
    Glen Cove, NY
    I'm in three bands. One is a jazz/funk band that tries to rehearse 3 times a week, this one is big-time minded. The next is a jazz/pop trumpet-fronted band, which never rehearses yet is playing in Emergenza. It frustrates me. The last one is probably going to be my favorite, I'll be playing upright in a standards quartet with the best freshman drummer at Berklee, the keyboard player from the jazz/funk band, and a great friend of mine who is one of the most amazing jazz singers I've ever heard.

    It's doable.

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