Got my first session

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [BG]' started by Howard K, Aug 6, 2003.

  1. Howard K

    Howard K

    Feb 14, 2002
    OK, I've been thinking about freelancing for a while and I have just landed my first session:

    A blues-rock band, Gator Highway, playing a bikers Harley Festival in North london!

    I'm confident I'll do a good job, but any little hinst and tips from some seasoned sessioners would be greatly appreciated :)

    Now this may seem a little strange, but I'm doing this one for free... Why, I hear you say? Well, the Mrs' car just packed in and I cant get there unless they drive me... also I'm hoping that if I do a good job I can get a decent testimonial and they'll recommend me to other people in the future.
    I'm still not 100% sure I did the right thing - that maybe I should have asked for a nominal fee?

    I guess I felt it was a bit of a cheek saying "Yeah, £100, but you'll have to pick me up, drive me there and back, with all my gear"
    Any comments very welcome cause I'm not sure if I should have done that? :meh:
  2. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member In Memoriam

    After hearing about your luck with nightclub bouncers - you're taking on a gig with a load of bikers.....:meh:

    My tip is to start self-defence classes - quickly!! ;)
  3. Howard K

    Howard K

    Feb 14, 2002
    Thanks for the vote of confidnece?!

    Hopefully there'll be chicken wire...
  4. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member In Memoriam

    Sorry - it was a cheap joke - but I didn't know what else to say as I don't have much experience in this area! :)

    (I wonder if J-J Burnel of Stranglers fame, gives tips on "stage presence" nowadays?
    :meh: )
  5. Howard K

    Howard K

    Feb 14, 2002
    No need to apologise, the cheaper the better I say!

    JJ who? The What-lers? :rolleyes:
  6. thrash_jazz


    Jan 11, 2002
    Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
    Artist: JAF Basses, Circle K Strings
    Under the circumstances, I'd say there's no problem with it. If they are nice folks (ie, not cheap bastards) they'll throw you down some cash anyway, or at least buy you beer.

    If they are an established act, I'm pretty sure they'll give you your fair cut. After all, they have to protect their reputations too!

    Even with the nasty traffic situation on the M25 I'm sure transportation wouldn't cost 100 pounds! ;)

    And yes, word of mouth is THE most powerful thing when it comes to freelancing. Well, second most - if someone hears what you do and wants you in their outfit, that's even better.
  7. Howard K

    Howard K

    Feb 14, 2002
    Yeah, I kinda hoped they might bung me a few quid anyhow, seeing as they're undoubtedly being paid and I am helping them out at fairly short notice. Still whatever really, I'l behappy if I have a good night free of charge... even better if I get more gigs from it :)

    Feedback, experience and recommendation is what I'm interested in mostly at this stage.
    In the futrue ut'd be nice to earn enough cash playing gigs to buy myself a new bass very now and then... cover costs so to speak ;)
  8. Chris A

    Chris A Chemo sucks! In Memoriam

    Feb 25, 2000
    Manchester NH
    Um, how about Misc?

    Chris A.:rolleyes: :bassist:
  9. Petebass


    Dec 22, 2002
    QLD Australia
    A Lot of my work nowdays is as a fill-in for whatever bass player decides to get sick, go interstate, whatever.

    The biggest tip is not to overplay. It's easy to fall into the trap of "gee I'd like to impress so I'm gonna give em everything I've got". SO you do and the phone doesn't ring. You're better off laying a solid bass line, give em something they can play along to so they can do what they normally do without wasting any energy worrying about the bass lines. Pick your little show-off moments just to remind them you're there, but don't overdo it. Once I worked this out, the phone started ringing.

    All bass player have to have their act together but for session guys it's even more important. Make sure all your gear works, you've got spare batteries, chords, do whatever it takes to eliminate equipment dramas at gigs.

    I find it helps if you try not to talk money at the gig. Before hand is fine, afterwards is fine, but it's hard to perform when you're in Accountant mode, so don't go there. They often call you because you're a good bloke over guys who are better players but are hard to get along with.

    There's more, and I'm still learning - That's the main stuff
  10. Howard K

    Howard K

    Feb 14, 2002
    Thanks Pete, very good point about the money talk. I'll stick to that as a rule. It'll make it easier for me that way too.

    That's gonna be tough actually, it's a blues/rock gig, plenty of space to widdle ;)
    I think I can manage this, a whole new set in one rehearsal means I'll have to really focus on grooving more than anything else

    Spares & tool kit is still operational from the mini-tour I did a few weeks back :)

    Ta v-much

    I was torn between the two.. I mean this is also general instruction in some ways isnt it?