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Destroying Instruments

Discussion in 'Band Management [BG]' started by gahpg, Mar 1, 2008.

  1. gahpg


    Jun 30, 2007
    Brookfield IL
    Hey guys.

    I'm a senior at high school, and I am helping some guys out with a song for a talent show coming up at school because they needed a bassist and i'm the only one in the high school. I joined them for practice yesterday during lunch and the gui**** asked me:

    "Hey, are you planning on wrecking your instrument at the end of the song? I'm going to wreck my guitar and the drummer is going to kick over his drums!"

    At that point, I told him that I thought that was stupid, and if you're going to wreck your guitar you might as well give it to me or somebody else that wants to learn how to play an instrument but doesn't have or can't get a guitar or someone that's passionate about playing but doesn't have a good instrument. I told him that he shouldn't do it. He says he's still going to do it "because I want to be an ******* like that" Easy for him I guess, especially when your dad is buying all your gear for you.

    So, I'm wondering what some of you guys would do? I'm thinking of playing along, and acting like i'm OK with them doing what they're going to do, but then on the night of the talent show, stop playing bass midway through the song (or before we play), maybe make an announcement saying that i'm leaving because they want to wreck instruments and I don't support that (not insulting them or anything) and walk off. I might just leave the whole thing together and have them find another bass player, but I really don't want to see this happen.

    This really angers me because i'm not the richest dude by far, and I had to work hard to get my first real bass, and even then it's not the best bass out there (MIM jazz). However, I am proud of my hard work and the last thing I would ever do is wreck my instrument, or anyone else's.

    What would you guys do?
  2. dont walk off, the last thing you need is to make enemies with them

    just dont wreck your bass, let them act retarted if they are going to, but nobodys gonna make you wreck your jazz (I sure wouldnt)
  3. KRSplat


    Nov 11, 2007
    Gaithersburg, MD
    Those instruments are expensive. I wonder if they realize that they're essentially blowing hundreds of dollars on a gig. I guess they do, since they did acknowledge that they <i>want</i> to be assholes. If I were you, I'd tell them I'd play with them but wasn't going to destroy my best friend. I'd never wreck my bass...

    Like you said, what makes it even worse is that there are tons of people around the world that would love to get their hands on instruments but don't have the money. Now I'm getting mad. :scowl:
  4. HollowBassman


    Jun 24, 2007
    Hancock, MD
    If you do decide to play with them, make sure you keep a firm hold on your bass at the end of the show. If they are dumb enough to trash their instruments, they might be dumb enough to try to trash yours also.
  5. Jim Carr

    Jim Carr Dr. Jim Gold Supporting Member

    Jan 21, 2006
    Denton, TX or Kailua, HI
    fEARful Kool-Aid dispensing liberal academic card-carrying union member Musicians Local 72-147
    Wow. Gonna really impress people, not. If telling these "musicians" you will not destroy your instrument means they become your "enemies," then who cares? What dopes. :scowl:

    Don't smash your bass, ever. Also, I think playing with people who treat instruments like that associates you with values that are lame, lame, lame. Making music with those instruments can express a lot more opinion, protest, anger, coolness, love, etc., than turning instruments into waste. Then again, perhaps they can't play particularly well.

    It's your call, but, I wouldn't give a fig about playing with such loser wannabees. Find real musicians, not posers. :eyebrow:
  6. Curtybob


    Jun 2, 2007
    Jackson, MO
    Don't forget that a good percentage of instruments made today are made so cheap and so repeatably that smashing them is only helping economies. Maybe not their household economies, but spending begets more spending.

    Spending is always good. Smashing a guitar necessitates more spending. Therefore, smashing guitars can only be good.

    I'm only kidding. Let those guys act dumb and smash the guitars. It actually does go over pretty good with the crowd, and it's not like they are gonna grab your bass... ok, keep a ball bat leaned next to your rig and have no worries.
  7. Jamasaurus


    Sep 10, 2007
    Naples, FL
    Smashing instruments is pretty punk rawk. If I could get a replacement bass easily enough after I wreck mine, I might do it too. However, I feel your pain when it comes to being strapped for cash and I just can't afford to do it.
  8. IanStephenson

    IanStephenson UnRegistered User

    Apr 8, 2006
    If they can afford it, and think it's a good return on their investment, then let them get on with it.

    Ever notice that guitarists who had a rep for smashing up their instruments at the end of every show, still have the same "special" guitars they had when they started, and talk about how they've used it on every recording/show? They have tech's ready to put the "real" guitar somewhere safe while a stunt double takes over - no way should you smash up your good bass. Fender Jazz goes in case, Encore Piece of Junk gets smashed.

    I don't/haven't/wouldn't do it, but if I was in "that" kind of band and had a big showcase gig then I'd probably be on ebay picking up a $20 bass ready for the big moment. If I thought that would sell $30 extra of merch I'd do it in an instant.

  9. Hphazard


    Jan 10, 2008

    No offense to you, but it's a high school talent show. I could imagine if there was something bigger on the line, say like playing to thousands of people, but are we really talkin' about here...? A gift certificate to Coldstone and $100 bucks?

    You're right, you worked hard to get that bass, if they want to trash their instruments, let them, their parents will probably just replace them because they are trying to be their friends.

    If you don't have that luxury, have a trustworthy friend grab it and case it at the end of the show. Then, you grab the nearest fire extinguisher, and let it fly. You may get detention, but you'll get the "Wow, they're really crazy" effect that your band members are going for. You'll be the talk of the school for the rest of the year.

    And remember, when they bust you, use this...

    "I did it for art's sake"

    Have fun storming the castle...

  10. callmeMrThumbs

    callmeMrThumbs Guest

    Oct 6, 2005
    Omaha, NE
    Besides the face that it's stupid to smash any instrument into the ground, if it is for your high school talent show, they could potentially damage the stage floor (knowing the crappy quality of school stages). If you're lucky, the might do enough "damage to school property" to make them pay the consequences.

  11. bassnug47


    Oct 7, 2007
    Birmingham AL
    life is good, Dead is better
    just pull an Entwhistle and step back to enjoy other people ruin thier perfectly good instruments.
  12. ysand


    Mar 26, 2005
    How can u destroy an instrument on purpose, let alon eYOUR instrument??? That's like murder in my eyes!

    Let em destroy whatever they want, except for your bass.
  13. UncleBalsamic


    Jul 8, 2007
  14. it worked for some people but if it doesn't work for you don't do it. (At a high school dance) my guitarist wanted to smash a guitar but didn't want to smash his '77 gibson Les Paul he bought with his own money, so the band pitched in and bought him a Target "Hello Kittie" guitar he played for the last song and then beat the hell out of it. Long story short, see if your band will buy you a beater bass to smash.
  15. +2

    And i agree, i hate it when people do that for some sort of look or what not. There are always people who cant afford an instrument, and it'd mean a hell of a lot more to them than someones 2 seconds of "im cool"
  16. bigbass94


    Apr 4, 2007

    (What would John entwistle Do)

  17. Mr.Phil


    Apr 9, 2005
    Upstate NY
    If you are making the commitment to play with them, do not walk off during the set. If you don't want to play with them, don't. But at least give them the common courtesy and allow them to find a replacement for your slot. Leaving them high and dry the day of is even more unprofessional than smashing gear.
  18. BackwaterBass


    Feb 18, 2008
    Pull a Peter Steele and just rip the strings off the bass while they are smashing things up. Loosen them up a few turns really quick and they probably wont even break when you do it, then you can just restring it later and do it again next time.
  19. anesthetist


    Nov 25, 2006
    +1 , just step to the side, stand quietly and look at those idiots wreck their instruments, you could ever so slightly turn your head from side to side or something to make your point across.

    you could also play till the end and exactly when you stop playing just calmly walk of stage as a bit of a statement.
  20. Shroom


    Dec 12, 2006
    I don't think the fact that it's a talent show is even a factor. If anything, smashing instruments will probably lose them points, considering the judges for those things are usually teachers or faculty or whatever.

    Make sure you keep your hands on your bass though, because I've heard horror stories of jerks grabbing the instruments out of other peoples' hands and destroying them. :scowl:

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