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Having a somewhat famous frontman in your band

Discussion in 'Band Management [BG]' started by Bottom Feeder, Apr 15, 2006.


  1. Bottom Feeder

    Bottom Feeder encridublee smatr

    Nov 22, 2004
    Huntington Beach, CA
    So we auditioned a new singer/frontman for our band. Mind you we just do covers and are just looking to bar/club/corporate gig 1-2 times/month. This guy actually toured for a year as lead singer for a big time 70's hard rock act as the were making an 80's comeback. So it turns out hes got no car and no PA (he says if you're good enough, people will supply you with a PA, and I guess we are perpetuating that belief), he looks kinda haggard and is sorta aloof and not quite "there". He doesn't sing too bad and can do the "Coverdale" sort of vocals.
    I guess I am just wondering if there is any advantage to having someone who may or may not be a "selling point" as to his former gigs. How far will saying "our frontman used to play with so and so" go even if he is not that great? I think I already know what my decision is going to be. :meh:
     
  2. cheezewiz

    cheezewiz Supporting Member

    Mar 27, 2002
    Ohio
    I'd argue that a singer that did an 80's redo of a 70's band, replacing the original singer, is not famous in the least little bit.
    Guy sounds like I headcase. Personally, I wouldn't play with him. Headcases are no fun.
     
  3. Bottom Feeder

    Bottom Feeder encridublee smatr

    Nov 22, 2004
    Huntington Beach, CA
    ROFL, cheezewiz, that is a good observation and you are probably quite correct to his amount of fame. When my bandmates bring up his "fame", may I use your astute observation? Yes, I believe he is a headcase. Always seems that way. Sigh:eyebrow:
     
  4. Now re-read the original post using the phrase "tribute band". :bag:
     
  5. Wow, spot on the money, Cheeze....

    Is that 70's band still touring, or working at 7-11's now?

    Two possiblilities:

    1) this guy got tossed out of a successful remake of a 70s band cause he was more trouble than he was worth.

    2) This guy got tossed out of a failed remake of a 70s band cause he was more trouble than he was worth.

    So either he's a reject of a good project, or a reject of a bad project.

    As you say, he's not all that good, not all "there", with no car, no PA, you guys will be driving him around on gigs. He's got an attitude cause he thinks he was inches from stardom, and probably thinks you guys are lucky to have him and should kiss his butt and worship him, the mighty rock star.

    Any signs he is tempramental? Corporate gigs aren't so impressed by former rock stars when they start acting like one. And any signs of trouble, fighting, drunkenness at gigs can keep you from getting a repeat engagement. Would any of us recognize his name? Or the name of the 70's band? I went to high school in the 70's I might remember them.

    Sounds risky to me as well. He's clearly a screwup or he'd have a car. How old is the guy, is he staying with his parents or something? If he had his **** together he'd be successful at being a front man and own a car at the very least, even just a junker. Or be smart enough to get a day job to cover necessities and equipment needs to pursue his dreams of rock stardom. Does he not have a car or did he lose his license for a few too many DUI's? Big difference, but neither is desireable.

    If for a single instant you think that he's blowing his money on dope rather than transportation, run away.

    And regardless of anythiing else, he will dump you guys in a minute if he gets another shot at the big time. It may be likely he's looking at you guys merely as a stopgap to keep him in beer money until he gets a real shot at fame. And that's ok, no problem using him for your frontman in the meantime. Just be aware of it. Our one guitar player tours with the JT guy "Party Like a Rock Star" once in a while, and is going to Afghanistan for USO for a few weeks, so we'll have to do without for a few shows. But he's not screwing with us, not a headcase, does his job, does it well, makes an effort, etc. He's a pleasure to have in the band. So no problem.

    This guy smells like trouble, but we don't know him like you do. Follow your gut.

    Randy
     
  6. bassmonkeee

    bassmonkeee

    Sep 13, 2000
    Decatur, GA
    I don't think anyone could have put it more succinctly, Mr Wiz.

    Good job!
     
  7. Tim Cole

    Tim Cole Supporting Member

    Jun 12, 2002
    Findlay, Ohio
    So........spill the beans. What band we talking about?
     
  8. IanStephenson

    IanStephenson UnRegistered User

    Apr 8, 2006
    If the guy is a decent guy, and has some perspective on his own importance, then having a link to a major name (assuming we have heard of them) will get you bookings and draw people. Milk it all you can. However if he's a jerk, then you'll not get invited back, and it'll just damage your own reputation.

    From my own experience of a front man who "nearly made it", there's a good chance he'll just drag you into supoprting his narcisitic world. The jerk I had to dealt with WAS in a band you've heard of - however from what I can make out they were flying appart at the time, and every guy in London with a pair of boots, and some eye make up was in the band for a few weeks. He ended up selling my PA to buy drugs...

    Basically just put his past to one side. Would you want him in the band if he'd just walked off the street? Can he sing? Is he reliable and commited? If he is, then his past is a bonus. Judge him on how he behaves now - not on what he was or might have been...

    Ian
     
  9. plexibass

    plexibass

    Jun 30, 2005
    i'm thinking....................steve perry
     
  10. Exactly. There are probably musicians who have had brushes with fame around your area if you look hard enough. The guitarist in our band used to know one of the guys from Cinderella, who lives in this area now, for example.

    Like the above poster said, you gotta judge people on what they bring to the table now, not what they may or may not have done 20+ years ago.
     
  11. Woodchuck

    Woodchuck

    Apr 21, 2000
    Atlanta (Grant Park!)
    Gallien Krueger for the last 12 years!
    Cheezewiz shoots, he scores!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
     
  12. Bottom Feeder

    Bottom Feeder encridublee smatr

    Nov 22, 2004
    Huntington Beach, CA
    Ahhh. I do believe we bassists tend to think alike.
    I guess I am looking to bolster my opinion of having this guy in the band. We got together with him again today solely because our drummer couldn't make the first round and want him to have equal input. He sounded better today (Wellbutrin kicked in maybe?) but I would prefer looking at more than one before taking him in. Funny thing is that other members are all for havin him join now. Sheesh, he just isn't that great. You guys are all correct in your thoughts on this and I appreciate the input. I think it may be time I move on.

    BTW, the initials for the band he was in are U.H. and actually are still together and at one point had one of my favorite bassists John Wetton with them. Can you guess???
     
  13. Using the Internet, I have concluded that you are auditioning a person probably named Steff Fontain, who is listed as a person who sang for the band Uriah Heep in 1986
     
  14. But I thought Uria Heep was from England?
     
  15. jazzbo58

    jazzbo58 Bassist for My Man Godbey

    Apr 21, 2001
    New Orleans, LA USA
    They are from England.

    Cheers,
    Jim
     
  16. IanStephenson

    IanStephenson UnRegistered User

    Apr 8, 2006
    From the OFFICIAL UH site... They REALLY didn't like him!!!

    And then came LA vocalist Stef Fontaine. "He was desperately bad," says Mick. "I couldn't believe anyone could be so unprofessional. He had a great voice but his discipline was something else.

    He'd go for a walk during rehearsals and then get lost. He even missed a gig in San Francisco once!" After that American tour it was the boot for Fontaine but that sorry chapter was to be the last real hiccup in Heep's long career.
     
  17. Hey, how could someone known as "Uriah Heep's Last Hiccup" possibly be a bad addition to your band? :bag:

    Sorry, I'll shut up now.
     
  18. bassmonkeee

    bassmonkeee

    Sep 13, 2000
    Decatur, GA
    Heh. Whoops. So much for his professionalism.
     
  19. Bottom Feeder

    Bottom Feeder encridublee smatr

    Nov 22, 2004
    Huntington Beach, CA
    Yes, you are correct in you're guesses as to who it is. And while he has provided explanations for the negative comments by the band members, he still seems kinda...strange. And what a great band name, "Last Hiccup".
     
  20. Akami

    Akami Four on the floor

    Mar 6, 2005
    日本/Alyeska
    This pretty well boils it down to what it's sounding like this guy is, a reject one way or the other.

    I haven't heard any Uriah Heep in years but I definitely feel his previous employers opinion of why he's not singing for them at least carries a little weight.

    And while it's possible for a total screwup to change, it doesn't sound like a guy without a car would fit into that category.

    Like Randy says, follow your gut. What the heck, has it ever got you in trouble before? ;)
     

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