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How much do looks really matter?

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [BG]' started by PennyroyalWe, Dec 14, 2018.


  1. PennyroyalWe

    PennyroyalWe

    Sep 2, 2018
    Oregon
    What are your thoughts on gig attire? I play in a local originals rock/indie group, nothing major or much of a following but we’re starting to get some traction. I’ve been thinking a lot lately about what to wear to gigs, what I should wear anyway. Normally my mind set has been wear what’s comfortable, casual, but not sloppy; but lately we’ve played with a few band that really have a “look” so to say. Nothing outrageous like costumes, but something of a theme amongst them. I think it looks pretty good onstage, but they kinda look like tools before/after the set. I suppose the best scenario would be something inconspicuous but distinctive...what’s others’ rule of thumb when dressing for a gig, do looks really matter that much?
     
    MCF and Smooth_bass88 like this.
  2. AaronVonRock

    AaronVonRock

    Feb 22, 2013
    Bangkok
    Personally, I like it when a band has "a look" and looks like a band. The Hives immediately come to mind.

    Hives3. Hives1. Hives2.
     
    pappabass, joker820, GlennRH and 12 others like this.
  3. tenor.
     
  4. fretter

    fretter

    May 24, 2012
    PA
    No matter what you look like, your clothes should be well fitting. This may require suspenders, alterations (dry clearers do some of them), and dry cleaned outfits.
     
    bdplaid, gebass6, smogg and 2 others like this.
  5. saabfender

    saabfender Banned

    Jan 10, 2018
    Indianapolis
    Yes. People listen with their eyes. This is why gigging in shorts makes you sound worse.
     
    Wisebass, kobass, bdplaid and 14 others like this.
  6. AaronVonRock

    AaronVonRock

    Feb 22, 2013
    Bangkok
  7. AaronVonRock

    AaronVonRock

    Feb 22, 2013
    Bangkok
    devo2. devvo3.
     
    GlennRH, woodyng2, JimmyM and 12 others like this.
  8. AaronVonRock

    AaronVonRock

    Feb 22, 2013
    Bangkok
    judaspriest. Manowar.
     
    JGbassman, bdplaid, GlennRH and 6 others like this.
  9. 1976-orleans-alb-320.
     
    J-Mags, bdplaid, Fxpmusic and 15 others like this.
  10. The bass player gets to wear a flat cap.
     
  11. Oddly

    Oddly Unofficial TalkBass Cartographer! Supporting Member

    Jan 17, 2014
    Dublin, Ireland.
    From the examples shown above, I think the Ramones win.:)

    I'm in the camp that says dress a level above your audience.
    My personal preference would be simple and classic ... the 'Resevoir Dogs' look.
    resdogs.

    That's probably best suited (pun intended) to a soul band though.

    As for the 'looking like tools before/after the show' thing, that's what changing rooms/backs of vans/toilets are for...
    Well, that and other activities, but that's for a different thread.:D
     
  12. hrodbert696

    hrodbert696 Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    But they probably looked like tools walking around like that before/after the set!

    I think you should definitely think about a band look. It doesn't have to be over the top, but it should be consistent among members of the band, and it should look like you ARE a band. What that look is depends on who you are as individuals and what kind of band it is. Yes, you may stand out a bit and be self-conscious walking around the bar during breaks. Own it. You're a performer, and a show is a SHOW.

    Sometimes it's jeans-and-T-shirt, but pick WHICH jeans and T-shirt. Don't look like you just came from mowing the lawn or playing a round of golf and figured you'd play a gig (unless you're in certain country or blues bands).
     
    ThePez, GlennRH, Robert B and 7 others like this.
  13. AaronVonRock

    AaronVonRock

    Feb 22, 2013
    Bangkok
    I saw Rob Halford after a Judas Priest concert around 3am at a Mr. Donut in Tokyo in 2005. Disappointingly, he was in street clothes. He was holding court at a crowded table eating pastries and drinking coffee. The best thing about it was that he literally had his pinky in the air when sipping his piping hot coffee. I didn't approach him and tried hard not to stare too much when I was waiting in line for my own delicious donuts.
     
  14. JRA

    JRA my words = opinion Supporting Member

    i wear a 'uniform' in one band. much more casual in another. but in neither do we look like the audience. so: it matters in those two bands.

    also: some venues can have a 'culture'. patrons can expect to see something special/different whether dress up or dress down.
     
    GlennRH, mikewalker and osv like this.
  15. lbbc

    lbbc Supporting Member

    Sep 25, 2007
    Seaford , DE
    years ago, I was definitely into wearing "like minded" attire (black and white...mix match BUT black and white) that way we would look like a band and be attired properly for parties or more formal events. Anymore, I'm into comfort. The places we play don't seem to care how we look...just how we sound
     
    Artman and PennyroyalWe like this.
  16. ogreboy88

    ogreboy88

    Apr 24, 2016
    To distill from the above:

    Who does the inner 14 year old of your average audience member wish they could be/sleep with? Dress like that guy/gal.

    (...or ironically poke fun at same.)
     
  17. dBChad

    dBChad

    Aug 17, 2018
    Daytona Beach, FL
    I always thought a look was gimmick-y.

    Professionalism is appreciated, but hair and make-up and costumes are compensating for lack of talent. Gear and Kiss are good examples: their musical talent can politely be described as lukewarm, but that's not what they're known for anyways.
     
    Artman, Nephilymbass, ELG60 and 2 others like this.
  18. Mordamir

    Mordamir

    Oct 19, 2018
    Funeralopolis
    hqdefault.
     
    lz4005, JGbassman, DirtDog and 28 others like this.
  19. bolophonic

    bolophonic

    Dec 10, 2009
    Durham, NC
    I played in a band where all the other guys would roll up onstage looking like they just got mugged on the way home from a long fishing trip. It was not the type of band or audience where attention to one’s appearance was mandatory, but I just couldn’t hang with the slovenly atmosphere that the rest of the guys cultivated.
     

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