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Does anyone live double lives (work/music)?

Discussion in 'Bass Humor & Gig Stories [BG]' started by SH69, May 8, 2010.

  1. SH69


    Jan 7, 2010
    I played bass in a band during my college days but quit after getting a full time accountancy job. It wasn't working out because the members of the band I was in were full time musicians with dreams of making it big and their idea of getting up early was 3pm. I'd go over to jam after work and they'd still be wiping the sleep out of their eyes. After watching them have breakfast and screw around, we'd start jamming at around 10 pm. Needless to say that didn't work for me because i had to be at work by 8am.

    After I quit that band i didn't touch my bass for about 15 years. I rediscovered it 3 years ago and I'm hooked. I got lessons (I never really knew what I was doing before) and after many craigslist misfires, finally found a band with a great bunch of guys, we play covers and have just played two gigs with plans to start gigging semi-regularly. I don't really talk much about it at the bank where I work because I'm kind of a shy person and would feel really uncomfortable if the whole office got wind of it and came to check out my band - I'd get really nervous and don't think I'd enjoy myself. I kind of enjoy bank by day/ rock god by night, with no cross over - I think i kind of doubt my abilities (although people tell me I'm pretty good) and much prefer playing to people I don't know. I keep telling myself I'll let the office know when we are really good but maybe I should invite them to the next gig. Does anyone else feel like this or am I just being too shy and insecure.
  2. nope.

    I'm proud to be part of the oh-so-mystical "musicians club."

    Most people I tell I play bass, piano, and guitar immediately think I'm way cooler than I actually am.
  3. BassScum


    May 1, 2008
    So Cal
    In the past a few close co-workers have come to my gigs, but I prefer to keep my work life pretty much seperate from band life and my personal life. But that's just me. Most of my co-workers wouldn't fit into the club bar scene anyway.
  4. Mojo-Man


    Feb 11, 2003

    I did it for years.
    I know play full time.
    Work/music were two different worlds.
    If they did collide, my work friends were a bit surprised.
    But supportive.
  5. Mystic Michael

    Mystic Michael Hip No Ties

    Apr 1, 2004
    New York, NY
    I don't feel that way. I've been performing music in one sense or another since childhood, and have long since lost any sense of stage fright.

    Then again, I don't really mix with many of the dorky cubicle drones with whom I've worked on day jobs (no offense intended), so my main hang-up would be whether they could even relate to my real life as a musician - and whether they'd even look down on me for not spending my personal time thinking up new ways to be productive at the office. :rolleyes:

    It's New York - what can I say? A half day is considered 12 hours. Mush, mush, mush and all that... :rolleyes:

  6. I know how you feel SH69, let me tell you my prediciment. Ive been playing over 20 yrs. but alone in my home, Im in my first band (5 rehearsals in) and Im learning all the things you need to know to play in an ensemble, plus learn songs etc. thats stressful enough but Ive always been uncomfortable about people "looking'" at me for too long and stage fright might be a real issue for me, which makes me want to keep my coworkers / work seperate from my band life but heres the thing: Im a paramedic on the streets and I work in a very busy local ER.....it seems everyone knows me! Or has seen me somewhere, tv news, newspapers etc. cared for someone that somebody knows.....Im screwed! Plus my nurse friend (gui****) who is putting this project together keeps telling EVERYBODY to come see us when were ready! AAARRGGHH! And they will! if you dont know, healthcare people love to party and let loose, Im afraid its out of my control, but yes, Id rather keep it seperate. Good luck.
  7. Codymb


    Mar 26, 2007
    Burlington, NC
    Dude, I really feel you on this one.

    In my day to day, "real world" life I'm known as sort of a nerd. If you asked anyone I work with about me they would say "Who? ...oh, that awkward guy. Yeah he's into math and science and books and stuff, I don't really talk to him much."

    But then I go out on the weekends and play in a metal band. Then suddenly I'm a god! Everyone wants to come over and talk to me and tell me how awesome they think I am. And suddenly I can pick up any girl in the club. It's a really strange experience.

    I can't imagine someone from my "day life" seeing me play. I have to see those same people every day! And I cant imagine what would happen if any of my fans saw who I was off stage. My life would be drastically different if there was that cross over.

    It's truly interesting because we haven't changed at all, it's entirely peoples perception of us. It's amazing how music has the ability to alter that perception.
  8. Korladis

    Korladis Banned Supporting Member

    You quit bass for a decade and a half because of one stupid band?

    I will end up leading a double life. Either as school teacher or some other history related profession and bassist, or perhaps eventually as househusband (there's pretty much no possible way for my girlfriend of 5 years to make less than I will once she's in the field she's going into) and bassist.
  9. RNV


    Apr 13, 2010
    Loxahatchee, Fl
    fEARful (I endorse them, not visa versa)
    I tend to keep my work, music, and family separated. When I'm in either environment I act the part, but oddly it happened naturally. I don't do it intentionally. I don't drink or smoke (cigs) when my son is home with me, and I have custody. But when out with friends or bandmates I do both. Co-workers only know about my son and not my music, hell they don't even know what I listen to. Just do what makes you comfortable.

    When you are ready to tell them, you should invite them to a night out for drinks and have it a the venue your band is playing at. That'll surprise them.
  10. Are we like the mild mannered Clark Kents by day, then change into our bass capes to become our alter ego Super(bass)man? My coworkers only know paramedic Tom, they would **** to know the REAL Tom,lol.
  11. tycobb73


    Jul 23, 2006
    Grand Rapids MI
    I'm an accounting consultant. Being in business for myself I know the importance of advertising and networking. I tell everyone I can about my gig so I hope they come out to one of my shows. Buy yeah, a 37 year old accountant in leather pants and Lamb of God t shirts.
  12. atheos


    Sep 28, 2008
    Tampere, Finland
    Nope, selling Apple stuff and playing in a rock band works just fine for me. I always get a day off when needed because we don't usually do more than one gig per week.
  13. the art guy

    the art guy Supporting Member

    Jun 19, 2008
    I'm a professor of art and design by trade. It fits in okay, since a lot of people who are into "the arts" are into music also. I don't actively promote the fact that I'm in a band, but it's a small city and a small college, so word gets around. I did have several of my students show up unexpectedly at a gig once, but it ended up being really fun.
  14. Single Coil

    Single Coil Supporting Member

    Apr 8, 2006
    I don't live a double life, but sometimes I wish I did.

    By day, I'm a mild mannered high school teacher, but I play in a local rock band (though we travel great and ridiculous distances for gigs), the worship band at church (about 800 people a Sunday), high school events (choir shows, variety show acts with students, etc.), and I sub with other local acts as well.

    My students and fellow teachers know I'm in a band, and many of them have come to see me. I refuse to advertise my music performances while at school unless I am directly asked, but I don't mind seeing people I know at the shows. The kids seem to think it's cool that I play, although I don't think they care for our style. My band is sort classic rock influenced alternative, I guess.

    However, I have noticed that I am more at ease when I play to total strangers. I'm not sure what that means. I guess I'm saying that I would prefer to have my two lives separate, but I'm not really sure why.
  15. interp

    interp Supporting Member

    Apr 14, 2005
    Garmisch, Germany
    For about 2 1/2 years a few years ago I was playing in Monterey in a band that worked 5-6 nights a week, week after week.
    During the day I worked full time as an instructor of Russian at the Defense Language Institute.

    I had a family (wife who also worked full-time and two small children).

    There was little crossover between my daytime activities and my night-time activities, but it wasn't because I discouraged my work colleagues from coming to see the band -- they were just two largely separate worlds. I had a ball though. I was never bored, didn't have time.

    The big downside was my typical daily schedule: start work at 8 am, finish work at 4:30. Run home grab a bite to eat, maybe play with the kids a little bit. 7:30 pm drive 30 minutes to the gig. Play the gig, usually 9-1 am. 2 am get home and crash. Next day, do it all over again. Six days a week, usually played a wedding on Saturday afternoons.

    By Sunday I was a zombie and too fatigued to enjoy my one day off.

    Upside: played a lot of great music with a band I loved and had a very fulfilling professional day-time gig.

    I was in my early 30s at that time and could never do that again.
  16. jive1

    jive1 Commercial User

    Jan 16, 2003
    Owner/Retailer: Jive Sound
    No double life for me. I don't have the energy or will to pull that off.

    Personally, I can't imagine not telling people I play music or am in a band. I've been playing music since I was 13, and bass since I was 17. It's a part of who I am, and have no desire to hide it or have any shame about it. For me to hide my music would be like telling people that I don't have a wife, or family, hobbies, faith, or other important things in my life.

    And it's not like I worked at Guitar Center or some Rock N Roll friendly environment. I was a social worker working with people with developmental disablities, a high school teacher, and a defense contractor. Everyone knew I was a musician who played in bands. In fact when I was introduced to the faculty as a teacher, they joking said I spent the summer corrupting our youth playing in a band.

    I would love to have my coworkers, clients, come to my gigs and sometimes they do. The draw is part of the business, and I'd be foolish to not tap into my network of friends or co-workers for that. I've had people from church, the military, and other folks who are "no fun". And I've learned many of them are people like me who like to unwind and have a good time outside of their career too, and some of them are in bands as well.

    But seriously, there is no shame in music. Music is awesome. Music is beautiful. Music touches. Where is the shame in that?
    Now if your band promotes drug use, demon worship, has costumes that make you feel silly, or isn't up to par, that's a different story. Music has nothing to do with that.
  17. Jim Powers

    Jim Powers

    Mar 19, 2007
    Charlotte, NC
    Nuclear engineering manager by day, rock bassist by night.

    Though I don't play a lot of gigs, I do enjoy going out to jam nights when I can, and keeping together with one or two developing projects. But the reality is the paying job is the priority, and managing impressions can mean the difference in that career. So it really depends on what the management culture you work in thinks about such diversity. If its viewed as a departure from dedication to the profession, you may not be doing yourself a favor by being too open about your musical activities.

    But then, its the same in the music circles. Some are more tolerant of diversity in careers than others.

    So, I tend to go slow in disclosing what I do until I've established myself and created the impression I want, both at work and at play!
  18. Jefenator

    Jefenator Supporting Member

    Aug 22, 2008
    My day job is pretty artsy fartsy, so... no concealment necessary. (Glass blowers, musicians - kind of a toss-up as to which group is more degenerate.)
  19. coreyfyfe

    coreyfyfe Supporting Member

    Nov 19, 2007
    boston, ma
    Scientist by day, musician by night....

    don't be embarrassed. My cover band is actually playing a co-worker's charity event in a few weeks.
  20. Funkturnal


    Nov 17, 2009
    Tokyo, Japan
    I work in a very corporate environment. I have a group of friends at work (that I trust) who I invite to my gigs and know all about how important music is to me. And I actually played at this musical event at my work when I first joined the company, so a lot of people know that I play.

    However, over the years, I've become very tight-lipped about the fact that I play. I've taken a couple of days (or half-days) off work for some of my gigs over the years, and the last thing I want is for anyone to know the real reason I was absent from work or why I might sometimes show up tired and hung over in the morning after a jam session or gig.

    Also, I don't need the extra gossip or what have you at the office. I don't need management knowing about my personal life. I change my name (or just use the initial of my last name) for my music related events because I don't want my gigs to show up on a search engine, thereby blowing the cover off my "alibi". I also don't relate to the corporate ladder climbing mentality which the majority of employees subscribe to in my work environment, and I don't particularly want to perform in front of people I work with. Of course, as an artist, I should try to promote and bring as many heads in as possible, but I do draw the line.

    I guess I just value my privacy. With things like facebook and people posting and tagging pictues and documenting everything online, it's hard to maintain privacy. But I just prefer keeping work and private life mutually exclusive. And just maybe, I get a perverse kick out of keeping this double-identity. :cool: :D

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