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Discussion in 'Bass Humor & Gig Stories [BG]' started by tbwilson, Apr 12, 2009.

  1. tbwilson


    Dec 11, 2006
    concord NH area
    I've got this problem, I get nervous (i think) or maybe its something else. I'm looking to you guys to give me help on this problem. The problem is this, i get on stage and i set up, then all of a sudden i start feeling sick. I pace around and then run to the bathroom and puke. Just when i feel like im good to play i get back on stage play threw our first song which is short and just barely make it threw it and then puke. This has happened to me twice out of the 3 shows we have had in the past 2 months maybe. i don't think its a bug. Anyone have this same problem. Anyone have any reasonable ideas i might not already know. We have a big show coming up and i cant really afford to puke again. If the problem keeps coming im going to have to stop playing out.
  2. Ric5

    Ric5 Supporting Member Commercial User

    Jan 29, 2008
    I convert 4 string Rickenbackers to 5 string basses.
    Dude it is stage fright ... play more in front of people and you should get used to it ... eventually stage fright will go away and be replaced with stage boredom ...
  3. Dogbertday

    Dogbertday Commercial User

    Jul 10, 2007
    SE Wisconsin
    Blaine Music LLC
    search around for some anxiety remedies... I like to find a way to meditate before I perform...

    http://www.how-to-meditate.org/ <---try the breathing meditation... start about 15 02 20 mintues before you go on if possible
  4. KeithPas

    KeithPas Supporting Member

    May 16, 2000
    You need to be saving this stuff for the show, people will love it.
  5. tbwilson


    Dec 11, 2006
    concord NH area
    people do kinda love it.............it's just too brutal on me! and Dogbertday ill do that!
  6. Bluesbreaker5


    Mar 24, 2006
    First of all.....make sure nothing is going on physically. Check with your doctor. If all is good, stay away from highly seasoned foods and acids....and alcohol. Drink plenty of water. Then remember this: Johnny Carson, the King of Late Night TV...had stage fright. It's fairly common.

    So to keep from puking, just think...WWJD....What Would Johnny Do?

    Then go out and HAVE FUN!!
  7. murphy


    May 5, 2004
    Toronto, Canada
    Maybe you need a sedative?
  8. tbwilson


    Dec 11, 2006
    concord NH area
    hopefully not this soon im my life!
  9. One remedy I always used for when I felt like I was gonna puke, I would chew gum. I don't know why it worked but it kept me from spewing my dinner on everyone around me.
  10. eat less before a gig.
  11. Dude, playing live is where it's at and the problem is all in your head.
    You're the guy up on stage playing live, the audience is filled with people who play make believe guitar hero on their TV. +1 for you.
    If you've rehearsed enough, have confidence in your abilities.
    Putting on a good show is better than trying to be 100% note perfect staring at your fingers all night.
    Just relax, be yourself and believe that you can do it.
  12. PBass101


    Jul 3, 2008
    Try warming up for a half hour before you go on stage. Your fingers will already be working and you're mind wil be on your instrument. If your problem persists, you really need to consider seeing a doctor. These things might be psychological, but there are also physiological issues that may be at work.
  13. Tumeni Notes

    Tumeni Notes

    Jan 2, 2009
    It sounds like a case of stage fright. You are getting yourself all worked up and having an anxiety attack. I would recommend not eating 2-3 hours prior to the show. Do not drink any alcohol before or during the show. If you feel yourself getting sick, take some very deep breaths and try to relax. Also, have some cold water close by and drink some in between your songs.

    I am not sure if you are new to gigging, but if you are, I am sure this will pass as you get more comfortable playing in front of people.
  14. fourfinger

    fourfinger Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 17, 2003
    Central Ohio
    Assuming it's just stage fright -- which does seem likely: Been there!

    It might not seem possible to you right now, it really does go away, (almost) completely.

    2 things that seemed to help me were thorough preparation and playing out regularly. Especially helpful was playing in front of people who didn't care a bit about all that thorough preparation.

    The WORST to do would be having a drink (of alcohol). Some band member might tell you otherwise, but it's NOT going to calm your nerves, except in the sense that you no longer care as much about making mistakes.
  15. pedulla-2007


    Sep 2, 2008
    Dude, we all play music because we love to play , and enjoy performing. Every little kid dreams of being a ROCK STAR at some time in his life.You need to watch DAVID LEE ROTH, and how he lives for the limelight. Don't forget about MICK JAGGER of the Stones. You need to develop a GUN-SLINGER ATTITUDE, or give someone else a chance to perform. I s--t water before a gig, but once you get started, It's a blast. Just give yourself a chance, I know you can do it. Do you like the music you play? This is the time of your life, when you are old and grey like me, you'll wish you had seized the moment. GOOD LUCK BROTHER BASSIST!! ;)
  16. pedulla-2007


    Sep 2, 2008
    Playing at a gig is how I met my wife!:meh:
  17. Gearhead17

    Gearhead17 Supporting Member

    May 4, 2006
    Roselle, IL
    I definitely suggest seeing a psychologist and see if you figure out what is really bothering you. It's definitely stage fright, but a little stronger. You can get passed it, but it sounds like something for the past if freaking you out - it's normal dude, I have been in similar circumstances before.

    Remember this, the only people that recognize your mistakes are people who have seen you play a certain song 10 times or other musicians. Otherwise, the people in the audience only notice when the instruments stop playing. If you make a mistake, smile as you try to figure out what note you are supposed to play, don't drop the beat, and keep going even if it sounds ugly. You can call your ugly creation a special harmony part on bass. Have fun the whole time and the crowd will join in eventually. Even if they don't, don't worry about them. Even if people don't react much, they like the music more than you can imagine.
  18. jellymax


    Nov 29, 2006
    SF CA
    sounds like a phobia. maybe you got nervous once & puked, but now the fear feeds on itself & its all you can think about during those critical moments. although eating light is a good idea, i dont think its the answer.

    you must build confidence that you dont have to puke at a gig. this means several
    gigs successfully avoiding throwing up. prepare yourself. i suggest visualizing yourself still alive after the
    show (not too hard to do right?) & realize that many people on this planet are
    working thru problems possibly greater then yours. also slow deep breaths if
    you have to. dont get stuck in the moment, look forward.
  19. nsmar4211


    Nov 11, 2007
    Yea that's stage fright. Ever seen 8 Mile? The scene where Eminem is tossing his cookies before a show? That's true-he did. He had it bad. A *lot* of people do......
    Including me. I've learned through experience not to eat much the day of a performance. Light breakfast, protein bar near gig time, wait till after to eat full meal. Definetly no chicken wings or pizza or fries or anything greasy or acidic!
    One of our big shows I spent the 30 minutes before we played pacing up and down and up and down a parking lot because I was nervous. Got a bunch of weird looks but the ones that knew me let me be :). Hey, it works.
    One thing that might help is develop a routine, something you always do before a show. Pace around in circles....do a crossword.....whatever. You may want to invest in a stressball toy and squash it (will help build finger strength too).
    One thing that helps me is when I realized (like a previous poster said) that *no one* notices the bass player unless he/she is not there... so as long as I don't drop out, I can play and be fine. A wrong note would be noticed by the band and maybe a few people on the floor, but its not the end of the world. Trust me, the singer and lead guitar get all the attention :).

    Besides, we're all animals. The whole prey/predator thing..... what animal wouldn't be nervous in front of a whole group of possible predators? Try this.... get 10 or 12 people to stand around your dog and just stare at him... might want to put them in bite suits! I guarantee he'd get nervous.

    Remember, you're not alone...and it will get better. Its taken me years and I still get nervous. Avoid the food, drink enough water and gatorade, remember its fun, and remember everyone has been there (even if they won't admit it or don't remember it).
  20. take a valium??

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