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Dire situation. Drummer moving away (includes poll)

Discussion in 'Band Management [BG]' started by Underdog, Nov 27, 2006.


  1. New Drummer

    27 vote(s)
    75.0%
  2. Contract Drummer

    8 vote(s)
    22.2%
  3. Laptop Method

    1 vote(s)
    2.8%
  4. Other/PLEASE ELABORATE!

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  1. Underdog

    Underdog

    Apr 10, 2005
    Tennessee
    My drummer is moving away. He's been with the band since the beginning (and has even tolerated being accused of stealing money, when the real thief was my girlfriend.) and is a PHENOMENAL drummer! It is impossible to replace someone in our age group with someone as talented as him. We're a buncha 17 year old kids.

    Now we're stuck in a situation. We love the drummer. He's coming back up to TN pursue music after highschool. The rest of the band doesn't know what to do about our current lack of drums. We have a few choices.

    A) New drummer. Fore-go the interesting drum fills, intros, and outros we're used to in favor of gaining a new drummer. This would pose a problem when he comes back, he'll expect back in and we'll want him in....leads me to B)

    B) Interrum drummer. Sign a contract for a drummer to play with our live shows and receive same pay as our drummer would. Just tell him he'll be ousted once our old drummer or better drummer comes into the picture. Poses problem of developing fondness for this drummer and being torn.

    C) Idiot Pilot method. We are recording before he leaves because he's such a MADMAN on the drums. We're recording our entire repertoire so we can play them live via laptop. Easiest method as pay will be split 3 ways and less mouths to feed and whatnot. Poses an inconvenience with new material. We'd have to record our parts to a click track and email it to him for him to record his part. He has his own studio in his house since his dad does radio commercials and is a personality.

    This is the method most preferred by the band (2 to 1 discounting the drummer) but would our stage presence suffer?

    What are your opinions?
     
  2. How long is he away? This happened to our band with our singer/guitarist and we thought about all of the possibilities you mentioned.

    in the end, he was going to be away for only a year, so we continue to learn/write/practice, but took a hiatus from live gigging until he returns.

    It is actually working, because our loyal crowd are starting to email us wondering when we will be returning to the stage, so there is SOME interest in us!!!

    good luck with whatever you choose.
     
  3. before i can make an educated vote, does your band make enough money to afford an interim drummer on contract? how long has your band been together? would a new full-time drummer be given the same amount of pay and input as the former drummer?
     
  4. Underdog

    Underdog

    Apr 10, 2005
    Tennessee
    he's away for a year and a half. There's also the possibility he might not come back to Tennessee if he can't get accepted to his college of choice. It's fubar.

    Do we have the money? Nope. We don't. The drummer would just be under the condition that if we had any perks, he'd get the drummer's share and probably more since he wouldn't be with us forever.

    We don't want to be sitting around. We've been writing material for a year now and finally have our songs how we want them and this egg is dropped in our lap. ARRRGGGG!
     
  5. hmmm, well, unfortunately my vote says get another drummer.

    sorry, I know how tough it is, but you haven't really much choice.

    if he comes back, you can always bring him in as a second drummer and get the two of them to share drum duties and maybe then introduce percussion for the other etc etc
     
  6. guy n. cognito

    guy n. cognito Secret Agent Member Gold Supporting Member

    Dec 28, 2005
    Nashville, TN
    Seems pretty simple. Try to find a replacement drummer. You will have a hard time finding a "contract" drummer that will play with musicians your age.
     
  7. pklima

    pklima Commercial User

    May 2, 2003
    Kraków, Polska
    Karoryfer Samples
    Get a replacement. Cemeteries are full of "indispensible" men.

    Someone who's away for a year and a half and might not be coming back will probably find other bands to play in. Especially if he is good.
     
  8. Joe Nerve

    Joe Nerve Supporting Member

    Oct 7, 2000
    New York City
    Endorsing artist: Musicman basses
    I say get over the fact that you have the greatest drummer ever, and find a new guy. Trust me, regardless of how great this guy is, there are better drummers out there - but I don't believe you'll find them until you let go of the notion that this guy is best and it's mpossible to replace him. You might find someone a little less wild, but who will open you up until enirely different things also. Or a better performer, or harder hitter, or one with more solid timing. You might play with someone for a while and say, what were we thinking with the old guy?

    Id forget the recording idea as it usually doesn't go over very well.

    We always hired drummers per gig until we found the right guy so we wouldn't have to ever stop playing. If you choose to save the money to pay someone, I don't see any reason you'd need any kind of contract. Most drummers for hire would do a gig for $100 which isn't much if there's a bunch of you saving for it. If you hire someone your own age I'd imagine you can get it for much less, as they probably wouldn't have the exerience or expenses of a guy who's been around a while.
     
  9. Dkerwood

    Dkerwood

    Aug 5, 2005
    Midwest
    A year and a half is a long time to play with a "temp" before the "real" drummer comes back.

    We were in a similar situation. We started our band in March of 04, and in May, our drummer announced that his family was moving. He was 19 and had just finished his freshman year of college, but by the end of the summer, he had decided to follow his parents out east. We were so frustrated because he was an amazing drummer, and the chemistry was there.

    After about six months of being gone, he realized that he had a bunch of friends who loved him out here, and that it was time for him to leave the nest. He announced that he would be returning within a few months. About that same time, we started up with a new drummer (we had been auditioning guys for SIX MONTHS but couldn't find the right fit until this new guy came along).

    It was hard. Why spend hours teaching a new guy all the intros, stops, hits, and turns when you know your experienced buddy is coming back soon? But we decided that we weren't going to sit back on our laurels and wait.

    The new drummer started in March of 05, and he's still with us today. Our old drummer is STILL saying that he's planning to come back. Honestly, even if he did come back, our current drummer is a much better fit for us right now.

    Of course, in August 07, our bassist will be heading off to college and I'll be taking my new degree and heading off to find a job. Our drummer, with a job, family, and responsibilities? He'll be staying right here. Maybe if it works out, our old drummer can come back and we'll all take up residence in a college town. Maybe not. Who knows?

    The moral of the story is this - in 18 months, your band might be signed and touring. Your band might not exist at all. He might find a new band and decide to stay where he is. 18 months is a long time in which ANYTHING can happen. Don't stake today on what MIGHT happen sometime in 2008. Replace your drummer and move forward.
     
  10. Dkerwood

    Dkerwood

    Aug 5, 2005
    Midwest
    A year and a half is a long time to play with a "temp" before the "real" drummer comes back.

    We were in a similar situation. We started our band in March of 04, and in May, our drummer announced that his family was moving. He was 19 and had just finished his freshman year of college, but by the end of the summer, he had decided to follow his parents out east. We were so frustrated because he was an amazing drummer, and the chemistry was there.

    After about six months of being gone, he realized that he had a bunch of friends who loved him out here, and that it was time for him to leave the nest. He announced that he would be returning within a few months. About that same time, we started up with a new drummer (we had been auditioning guys for SIX MONTHS but couldn't find the right fit until this new guy came along).

    It was hard. Why spend hours teaching a new guy all the intros, stops, hits, and turns when you know your experienced buddy is coming back soon? But we decided that we weren't going to sit back on our laurels and wait.

    The new drummer started in March of 05, and he's still with us today. Our old drummer is STILL saying that he's planning to come back. Honestly, even if he did come back, our current drummer is a much better fit for us right now.

    Of course, in August 07, our bassist will be heading off to college and I'll be taking my new degree and heading off to find a job. Our drummer, with a job, family, and responsibilities? He'll be staying right here. Maybe if it works out, our old drummer can come back and we'll all take up residence in a college town. Maybe not. Who knows?

    The moral of the story is this - in 18 months, your band might be signed and touring. Your band might not exist at all. He might find a new band and decide to stay where he is. 18 months is a long time in which ANYTHING can happen. Don't stake today on what MIGHT happen sometime in 2008. Replace your drummer and move forward.
     
  11. Agreed. If your current drummer is any kind of friend at all, he'll understand that you need to find a replacement.

    Hell, our band is averaging about one drummer every 6-12 months, so remember that. Nothing is forever, especially when it comes to bands starting out, whether you're playing covers or originals.
     
  12. You are confusing a drumming issue with friendship and age.
    Your guy has made the desision that was best for him. Now you need to make the decision that is best for you.

    You have an age limit? What actually IS your age limit? Why do you have a limit? Does your excellent band want a new friend or a new drummer? Are you shy?

    Now that you have a following you should be able to get an even better drummer - purley on the merit of the band.
     
  13. MakiSupaStar

    MakiSupaStar The Lowdown Diggler

    Apr 12, 2006
    Huntington Beach, CA
    Get a new drummer. Whose to say that in a year and half that he's going to want to return anyway. Or vice versa. No offense, but a year and a half is a long time at your age. You'll be into totally different things then. Both of you. This isn't about drumming. It's about friendship and that's easy. You'll always be friends.
     
  14. replace him
     
  15. +1

    get a new guy.
     
  16. -Sam-

    -Sam-

    Oct 5, 2005
    Sydney, Australia
    get a new one
     
  17. ihateusernames

    ihateusernames

    Jun 26, 2006
    new one. went through the same thing. wasted 5 years because no one would be as good as (names hidden to protect privacy).

    turns out some one can get pretty damned close. so glad we decided to invite someone else to join the new version of the band.
     
  18. Dkerwood

    Dkerwood

    Aug 5, 2005
    Midwest
    Hey, at least it's "only" a drummer. My sister and I have been doing music together since she was 8 or 9 (I'm six years older). She's now 18, and getting ready to graduate from high school. She plays bass in the band and sings backup with occasional lead vocals. We've been in this current band for three years and were in a different band for two years before that with a lot of the same tunes.

    We've been playing together so long, I don't know what I'm going to do when she leaves for college. In all probability, since I graduate from college this year, I'll probably see if I can get a job near her college (two hours away - my girlfriend is up there right now, too), and the band will just relocate sans drummer - he's stuck here with a job and a family.

    I've thought about the possibility of replacing her, but I'm not sure that I necessarily want to. With all due respect for the drummer (who I love, by the way), I'd rather replace that instrument than try to find someone who can throw down solid bass lines AND sing AND try to be entertaining in a power trio.
     

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