Drummer quit! We didn’t even have to fire him!

Discussion in 'Band Management [BG]' started by The Bass Clef, Nov 23, 2022.

  1. @JimmyM if you want to hear the joke, I'll PM you?
  2. JimmyM

    JimmyM Supporting Member

    Apr 11, 2005
    Apopka, FL
    Endorsing: Yamaha, Ampeg, Line 6, EMG
    I have a feeling I know what it is ;) but sure.
  3. EddiePlaysBass


    Feb 26, 2009
    This is Talkbass. I cry a little every time I see a post saying: "I don't care what's on the set list, as long as I get paid".

    This is refreshing. You don't know how much it means to me to read this - cos really, one of the TB rules, in my view, seems to have become: "It's all about the money, not the fun"

    As to the OP, I don't see why the drummer owes you anything for bringing him up to speed. You wanted him to improve, and you helped him improve. End of story. Stop fretting over it (fretless bass is more fun anyway )
    Nashrakh, EdO. and Spidey2112 like this.
  4. pepj


    Mar 25, 2021
    Depends on the person and some need the money but for me if its rubbish and/or I dont enjoy it, its a non starter or a bail.
    But yep, getting above the going rate gives you the idea that someone thinks you are doing it right.
    Admittedly, not the most definitive criteria, but?
    EdO. likes this.
  5. TerenceE

    TerenceE Supporting Member

    Dec 6, 2015
    Poor bastard. Watching isn’t as fun as playing. Glad you found a new drummer! Good well rounded drummers who can play multiple genres are rare as hens teeth here. Our first drummer quit. Our new drummer Dan (RIP my friend) passed in a car accident last year. Took us 4 months to find a replacement but man losing Dan was
    Such a loss on so many levels. Amazing human being and just a beast of s drummer, doubly so since he was only 25 and hanging out with old guys lol. We are
    Coming up on a year with the new drummer and are starting to insert ourselves in the local music scene.

    Pay ranges from whatever cover and tips brings in to $600/night for bar gigs to $1500-$2500 for private events. I book all the gigs and everyone is
    More than happy with the pay

    Good luck going forward sir!
    The Bass Clef likes this.
  6. Musicians are not necessarily entertainers, and vice versa.
    QweziRider and EddiePlaysBass like this.
  7. I agree with that. What isn't given freely was not really ever given at all. If you take someone under your wing for mentoring, you need to understand that the idea is to help them move beyond the point at which they need you. This can be very satisfying to see, but it comes with the possibility that they will move beyond you once that happens.

    Most real teachers will tell you that this is their goal, but when we're doing this out of self-interest (helping OUR band become better) it muddies the water.

    Bottom line here is that the drummer decided to move on because he thinks he's better than what the band now offers. Maybe he's right, but he probably has an unrealistic expectation about what the possibilities are. Great talent doesn't translate into better opportunity in most markets; this is why most of the very talented players I've known have got day jobs now.

    But it's his business what he does with his improved skills.
    EddiePlaysBass likes this.
  8. EddiePlaysBass


    Feb 26, 2009
    Fair point!
  9. But the ones who ARE entertainers (or are at least entertaining to watch perform) generally get better gigs and make more $$$. What we do is play music. However the name of the business we're in is ENTERTAINMENT. Those who know the difference have the advantage.
    mcnach and LBS-bass like this.
  10. basseux


    Jan 10, 2010
    That's too bad.

    That would do it anyway.
  11. pepj


    Mar 25, 2021
    Drummer story; I have to vent it somewhere because it is still 'raw'

    Sub date:
    In the grand scheme of this, why do I care, its not my gig, but I am friendly with some of the guys which is why I accepted the Sub...against my better judgement, but hey.

    I'm normally very picky over drummers and one non negotiable on the gigs we book them for is time, groove and sound.
    This guy in the band fails on all 3. How the band dont know this, I can't fathom, but its their band and I'm the sub. That maybe tells you about the band and why I haven't let them know why I'm pissed at the gig.
    I'm biting my tongue here because I'd truly launch him and its a battle not of my real concern. I'll just tell them I'm not available again.
    I spent all night trying to make sense of what he played and it drains your own confidence

    So, imo, a band has absolutely no chance if the drummer is poor.

    4 states of drummer competance.
    1) Do not even bother
    2) A trial and not upto the job but fixable..kinda, if you need to have to perservere..personally, you shouldn't, but?
    3) Good fun and you are ok if they on another gig.
    4) Musical education. But like gold dust and then some.
    LBS-bass likes this.
  12. Over the past two years I've had to work with drummers at various levels. Now, I was very spoiled on this count because the last guy I worked with was world-class in terms of chops and execution and his timing was almost impeccable. Then the pandemic hit and he was gone from my life for various reasons.

    I told myself each time that I could figure out ways to make it work but what I learned in that process is that if you think you can help someone to improve, they also have to be open to that (and not propped up by others in the band telling them how good they are when their fills are landing a quarter beat off).

    The result was that I ended up leaving one band and ended up helping the drummer in the other band zero in on his deficits and find ways to address them. That guy is now very happily working at a much higher level and living his dream of sailing through auditions with more gigs on the books than I have.

    But getting there with him was one of the most challenging things I have ever done. I spent a whole year thinking that, at any moment, I was going to find it too much to bear and I had one foot out the door with them that entire time. But we got there, and it's good.

    So my point in all of this is to suggest that sometimes investing in helping someone get to where they want to be is a workable proposition, but you can't just pick someone out of a lineup and give them pointers. They have to know that they need that kind of help and be consciously willing to enter that sort of mentoring relationship with you. But if they do, it can be worthwhile.

    On the other hand, if you're subbing, you have the luxury of letting that stuff go and turning down the work next time.
    Last edited: Dec 4, 2022
  13. pepj


    Mar 25, 2021
    In this case, it would cause too many problems for a band I'm not in.
    A few red flags for me was he said he'd only turned the kit 3 times, ever.
    No one I play with is ever that slack in that regard and this points to the crux of his problem.
    He is oblivious to any sort of groove...I doubt the band have helped him, his time is not good so that would kill any groove should he accidently happen across one. He is not in anyway musical.
    The only good I can say about him is he not a bad guy, just gormless and clueless.
    In short, he has nothing in him, he just hasn't got it.
    Worse drummer apart from the Open Mic guys which don't count because they don't gig.
    LBS-bass likes this.