COVID Jamming

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [BG]' started by Swampish, Aug 19, 2020.

  1. Swampish


    Dec 31, 2015
    Quebec, Canada
    Like many of us, there aren't a ton of gigging opportunities at the moment, so our band decided to make the most of the time, work on new songs, develop stronger set lists and just improve overall. We would usually practice at our guitarists house (he has a pretty nice setup in his basement), but with COVID, he, rightly so, doesn't want to risk his household. So we've been using practice studios. The first one was a bit tight and our keyboardist was getting panicky, so we moved to a larger 750 sq ft room for the five of us. Not a bad solution, but still kind of stressful even just bringing our instruments in through the general area. What are other bands doing during these difficult times?
  2. twinjet

    twinjet Powered by GE90s; fueled with coffee. Staff Member Supporting Member

    Sep 23, 2008
    My duo occasionally gets to do a local farmer's market. Otherwise, little to no activity.
    Swampish likes this.
  3. Swampish


    Dec 31, 2015
    Quebec, Canada
    Tough times, especially for musicians that do this for a living. With summer ending, it will be even more difficult. At least some of the outdoor gigs were easier to organize and keep safer.

    How/where do you guys practice?
  4. twinjet

    twinjet Powered by GE90s; fueled with coffee. Staff Member Supporting Member

    Sep 23, 2008
    No practice these days. We've had our setlist together for over five years. Our sporadic gigs are enough to get things moving again easily.
    Swampish likes this.
  5. mongo2


    Feb 17, 2008
    Da Shaw
    My duo's playing out is canceled for the season which is OK with us. We rehearse about once a week on my front porch where there's more than enough room. The neighbors that have commented on it all like it.
    Outbush and Swampish like this.
  6. Swampish


    Dec 31, 2015
    Quebec, Canada
    That's cool!
  7. alex1fly


    Feb 5, 2008
    Hoping to bump this back in to conversation. I've searched around and haven't found many specific responses on how bands are handling safety in rehearsals. I've got the itch bad to play with a full band after 7 months of no band practices.

    So... who's still doing band rehearsals? What strategies are you using to minimize the risks? Is ventilation, masks, distance, etc feasible in your rehearsal setup?

  8. sacreddog717


    Jun 20, 2006
    Dublin, CA
    We have been doing backyard jams acoustic. 4 people and drummer picked up a cajon and pedal and just uses snare, 1 tom and cymbals. Very cool to hear our usually loud music in acoustic form.
    Swampish and Peteyboy like this.
  9. Peteyboy


    Apr 2, 2018
    Los Angeles
    My band used to rehearse at hourly studios, but sharing equipment is dicey so we had to spring for a lockout. We just set up like a regular stage-plot - the two singers turned around to face front. My bandmates all work from home, and I've been out of work since March. I only see my GF on weekends and she works from home too. We are not mingling with any other people really. We keep masks and gloves and hand sanitizer in the room. Realistically, we aren't wearing masks at all times. The singers gotta sing. But we keep our distance and they face the other way. No gigs on the horizon, but recording in October.
    Swampish likes this.
  10. Swampish


    Dec 31, 2015
    Quebec, Canada
    We were playing in a practice space for a while, but then second wave hit. Now we're looking at virtual options like Jamkazam or Jammr, since it's getting too cold to play outside.
  11. Swampish


    Dec 31, 2015
    Quebec, Canada
    That's what we were doing, but no longer allowed.
  12. two fingers

    two fingers Opinionated blowhard. But not mad about it. Gold Supporting Member

    Feb 7, 2005
    Eastern NC USA
    Our jam space is in the bonus room over my garage. We've had a few rehearsals lately. We spread out. Luckily, every night we have rehearsed recently has been cool and dry. So I have actually hooked up a window fan to pull a draft through the room. That has made us all feel better. (I love fresh air anyway. And it's rare that we can open windows in Eastern NC due to incredible humidity. But we've been really fortunate to actually have a Fall season this year for the first time in about a decade. Usually it goes straight from hot and humid to cold.)

    All of us have careers that warrant our getting tested pretty frequently. We have all been negative all through it. It's great to see my friends. They are my band mates. But they are also like a very weird, dysfunctional, family to me.
  13. cassanova


    Sep 4, 2000
    I've been doing remote session work. Currently with one project where everyone lives in different countries. We never know whats going to happen there. One day its a rock/metal piece, the next smooth jazz type stuff. Also recently recruited some friends of mine to record some of our favorite covers. Bars are open here in Florida, but supposed to be operating at I think half capacity, but most are usually full in this area, so I'm not risking live work just yet. Been trying to get by financially by doing remote work, and doing setups for other peoples guitars and basses.
  14. Haven't played since March 17th. We recorded 4 new songs in our studio from April until May, and that was one on one with just our guitarist/engineer. We jammed once after that, but then a couple of us got sick (not covid) kind of freaked us out and we lost the momentum. 3 of us work alone or from home and basically have been living as if the lock down is still going on, with exception to doing outdoor activities. The other works a service type job and is in people's houses and around a lot more coworkers so its kind of sketchy for us all together.

    I don't know what this fall/winter will look like. We usually are very productive with writing/recording during these months but who knows. I've just been buying lots of gear and messing around with it at home. :bassist::laugh::(
    jwindham likes this.
  15. Bob_Ross

    Bob_Ross Gold Supporting Member

    Dec 29, 2012
    Let us know if you can get those apps to work out for you. My trio did some preliminary experiments with Jamkazam, and they were quite disappointing: I couldn't even get the app to launch properly, and by the time I had gotten that sorted out (I think) the other two members had run some preliminary sessions and confirmed that the timing and sync issues are too loose for rewarding real-time musical collaborations.
  16. Wanker_Joe


    Sep 26, 2017
    Friends and I tried the online jam solutions and they really didn't work for us (despite having monster internet connections). Very disappointing. It's also getting too cold to jam outside for us (which was what my duo previously did) as it's now starting to hit around 1 or 2 C in the evenings and getting dark at like 6 PM. So far our workaround is to jam around the fire pit, which is fun, but snow is on the horizon so we're kind of out of ideas...
  17. mntngrown

    mntngrown Supporting Member

    Aug 18, 2007
    The lost Sierra
    When winter sets in and the host house will be closed up, I will be done, This may come as a shock to the other players but I am approaching old. I like that two fat politicians recovered but I don't want it in the first place. No gigs anyway???
  18. We did a driveway concert in September at our guitar players house and the neighbors seemed to really enjoy it. But it’s gotten pretty chilly here in MI so that’s out for probably six months. Very few venues here are hosting live music but honestly, the three of us are staying out of bars and restaurants anyway.
  19. fhm555

    fhm555 So FOS my eyes are brown Supporting Member

    Feb 16, 2011
    I’m scheduled to attend a jam in a couple weeks. It’s going to be in a big workshop area that is/was a regular rehearsal space for the host’s (now defunct) band. He called and asked if i wanted to come and i agreed. He’s in a very remote location and I know all the other people coming and know they have done their best to observe best practices for COVID so we’re going to chance it.
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