I think its Karma....

Discussion in 'Band Management [BG]' started by Justice, May 4, 2005.

  1. Justice


    May 24, 2002
    Houston TX.
    A couple of years ago, I was in a fairly unique situation in the band I was in. I had hired on with them as their sound guy but the drummer (who I had known for over 12 years) one night commented that I also played bass. At he time I was not really interested in playing, and certainly did not want to step on the current bass players toes. Well they kept asking so I learned a few songs and would play a couple at each show. Eventually this evolved into me being on stage palying bass, mandolin, singing lead and or back up and basically being a member of the band. I spent a little more than a third of the night and was paid the same as every other band member. During that time the band went through 3 lead guitar players and 2 keyboard players (band consisted of guitar-synth guitar/bass/drums/female vox and a second guitar or a key player)

    So, due to the bandleader (guitar-synth guitar) having foot problems and workmans comp problems, when it came time to get another guitar player who could take over a lot of the male lead vox work.

    Enter the next guitar player, we'll call him "Slimey". We first met Slimey at a show in one of the nicer clubs we played. He was sitting in front of the soundboard and was heard more than one time making nasty remarks about the band. Which of course the band didn't hear cause they are on stage. THey invite him to sit in and my friend and I cringe when he plays and sings (he can play and sing, but his inflection was terrible and his guitar playing was nothing special, plus he just looked "Slimey" - think used car salesman)

    Anyway, bandleader is desparate, and even after I voiced my opinion of Slimey, decides to hire him anyway.

    Now, almost immediately after being hired, instead of learing the bands setlist, Slimey starts injecting his ideas into the band, and wanting to bring other songs in. This would not be bad except that he calimed that he now all of the bands current material and really did not need to practice that but wanted to make everyone else work on his songs (also sonegs that he could play fiddle on) and during shows started taking over the "frontman" spot, which inlcuded doing most of the talking to the crowd. He had a bunch of stupid cliche things that he would say every show, and you could just hear people in the crowd groan after hearing this stuff night after night. He would never add anything else. he also seemed to have a problem with me coming out from behind the mixer to perform. It also became painfully clear that he had trouble "following", meaning staying within the correct tempo, causing everybody else (including the drummer) to have to follow him to keep the songs sounding correct. The bass player would complain that they were ending up playing songs too fast and she could not handle them. Slimey would blame it on the drummer (who is one of the most solid pocket drummers i know), and would never miss a chance to expand on his therory that the drummer had trouble keeping time when ever the drummer was not around. Slimey would make comments like "I always have to turn to him and *makes a motion like shaking the headstock of his guitar up and down in rhythm" to keep him in time" He said this one night after the drummer had packed and left after a show and I almost went off on him, but as I was leaving I mention in allthe times I had played with the drummer, I never had to "do the guitar shaking thing" . Which made Slimey a little mad.

    Now in the entire time that Slimey and I were in the band together, I always treated him professionally both in rehearsals and especially at shows, even though I personally did not like him. Adn the rest of the band knew this, and also knew that I would never make a scene at a show or do anything that would reflect negatively on the band itself. The same cannot be said for Slimey who more than one time insulted people in the clubs and once even shoved the owner of a club we were playing when he accidentally bumped into the singers music stand while dancing. Needless to say, we never played at that club again.

    I said to the bandleader that I thought Slimey was really bad for the band was was going to end up hurting our reputation if something was not done soon. The band leader, who was still dealing with the previously mentioned problems said that he under stood, but there was no time to really do anything about it then.

    Anyway, Slimey and I got into an argument about driving long distances to play little s**thole clubs that were not going to pay the band very much (7 people including the guy who helped us move gear and ran our lights) Slimey also played in a little 3 piece band (which included Slimey and what ever bass player and drummer hie could find to play with him) that he would play with whenever we were not booked. This was not an issue as long as he didn't double book (more on that later). He thought that since his 3 piece band was playing these little clubs that the rest of the band would be happy if he booked us in there as well. But due to everyones working schedules, nobody really wanted to take the shows because we already had problems with long distance shows and Slimey had been told that.

    I'm guessing that Slimey didn't like me because he took this oppertunity to make the claim that I should not have any say about the bands bookings because in his mind, I was "just the soundguy" and should be happy that they even let me get up on stage and perform with the musicians. And othe than that I should just shut up. I explained to him that I was a member of the band long before he was and that the rest of the band thought that I brought a lot to the show and was one of the things that made the band a little different.

    At this point I told the band, that If things kept up the way they were going, either Slimey of myself was going to have to leave. I also said that I really did not want them to have to make that decision but I felt it was important that they all knew how I felt. The band leaders had a talk with Slimey which resulted in him starting so send me really nasty emails about how I was draggin the band down and that nobody at the shows wanted to see me get up and sing/play, and how he ALWAY recieved comliments on his performances at every show and that I neede to just shut up and be happy running sound. (i found it funny that his "friends" never came out to see the band, but mine did..and hated him..)

    This, to me was the last straw and I informed the band that I would be leaving since I did not feel I could work with Slimey in a professional manner. This resulted in a barage of emails from Slimey shouting things like "good riddance to a sorry a**hole" and that the band would be better without me, and that If I ever showed up at one of their shows, that "it was going down" Yes, he threatend me with physical violence"

    I kept copies of all his emails and forwarded cpies to the band so if they had any doubt about how Slimey really was, this would leave no questions.

    I kept in touch with the band (cause they were all my friends, except Slimey) and the drummer was complaining about Slimey missing practices saysing he was sick. and then one night, they called me and invited me to a show saying Slimey had called them saying that he could not play because he had fallen and hurt himself and could not play. So he would not be there. They had called a friend that played keys to fill in and since Slimey was not there, they invited me out as well. When I get to the show, on break they tell me that they know that Slimey is not hurt, but actually playing a gig at another club with his 3 piece band (cause it paid more). They new this because Slimey had left his date book at there house and they found it and read it (he was also playing the night he said he could practice because he was said he was sick)

    So they fired him the next week. I had been working with another band by now but told them that if they wanted, I would come out a help them out when I was available. This went on for a while, and I joined the band full time again and lasted until I decided to leave the band to put together my own band.

    That was a couple of years ago...fast forward to last week. My friend and I had arrived at the club where we were playing that night and notice that Slimeys band was playing the following week. we unloaded my gear and and sat down to have dinner when the manager of the club came over to talk to us. She told me that they had just purchased another club nearby and wanted to now if we would be interested in playing there, I recognized that this was a club that Slimey played at frequently. I said sure, do you have anything open in May (I did not have the band calendar with me since I don't do our booking in this club, drummer wife does, but i knew we were blank in May) She said she did not think they had any openings in May, so I said "Well, if you have Slimeys band booked, just fire them and give us their spot." She looked shocked for a second, and then said "really? can you pay on the 6th?" I said "yea, why?" and she said that she had been told that if she could get someone to cover Slimey's bands date, to fire them. At which point the drummers wife walked in with the calendar, the manager promptly wrote us in for the 6th and went and called Slimey and informed him that they were fired...from both clubs.... :eek:

    I promptly finished my burger, setup my gear and had a great tiem playing that night... and I'm sure I'll have a great time playing on the 6th as well. :p
  2. Munjibunga

    Munjibunga Total Hyper-Elite Member Gold Supporting Member

    May 6, 2000
    San Diego (when not at Groom Lake)
    Independent Contractor to Bass San Diego
    Great story, and well told!
  3. worth the read...

    Let us know how the 6th goes
  4. fraublugher


    Nov 19, 2004
    ottawa, ontario, canada
    music school retailer
    karmic re-allignment in your lifetime is so sweet .
  5. Great story, I couldn't put it down.

    One question though: Why did the rest of the band put up with this jackass for so long?
  6. ha, that's awesome.
  7. ireidt


    Mar 6, 2005
    awsome man! I recently quit one of my bands for no one wants to practice besides me, and I understand people having to work, but only the drummer works, and he has 3 days off suring the week, how hard is it to practice a few hours once a week?

    Anyway, Im glad that "Slimey" got fired, sopunds like a jerk to me.
  8. Justice


    May 24, 2002
    Houston TX.
    The drummer hated him, but did not want to stir things up. He was very aware about how Slimey was trying to pin the tempo problems on him..

    The female vox, was just "sure, he could not be as bad a guy as I said he was, why he was even giving her daughter violin lessons"

    The band leader, who had just had foot surgery, and was having trouble with workmans comp since it was a work related injury to his foot and his work was trying to screw him over, really just did not want to deal with it at the time since the guy had taken so much of the "frontman" load off his back.

    The bass player, bless her heart, was just being infuenced by him, and she (the least experienced player in the band) was buying his lines. The guy was a real bullsh**ter (remember the used car salesman comment above?) and he had her convinced that the tempo problems (that they never had before Slimey joined the band) were the drummers fault, when they were really ol Slimey.

    She and the singer finally caught on when he started faking illnesses to miss practice and go play other gigs, and then of course they found his date book and that was the last straw.
  9. MikeBass

    MikeBass Supporting Member

    Nov 4, 2003
    Ferndale MI.
    Artist: Xotic Basses/AccuGroove
    Karma is great isn't it?!?!?!!!!
    I had a situation sorta like that one with a very popular band here in Detroit (crazy popular). I won't go into personal details because the bass player (who I orignally replaced) is the guitar players brother-the guitar player was my "Slimy" so to speak, so was the drummer- and the bass player is a TB'r.
    Short story:
    A bunch of BS went down with the band
    We broke up
    Two bands formed from the break up
    The singer and I are in one
    They are in another (with the old bass player)
    Lawyers are involved (yes lawyers-like I said VERY popular=lots money)
    The two bands start playing
    They suck
    We don't
    They get booted from clubs
    We don't
    More lawyers
    They loose some $$ in a settlement
    We get better
    They don't
    We pick-up where the old band left off for the most part
    They break up
    We are still playing

    I did leave the band (lemme see career or band?? :meh: ) but they are still going strong today.
    We didn't do anything seedy or unprofessional, they did.
    Karma for us!!

    For the record, I never had any problems with the old bass player outright, but things happened and papers were filed..........
  10. Munjibunga

    Munjibunga Total Hyper-Elite Member Gold Supporting Member

    May 6, 2000
    San Diego (when not at Groom Lake)
    Independent Contractor to Bass San Diego
    So who drives the green Volkswagen?
  11. MikeBass

    MikeBass Supporting Member

    Nov 4, 2003
    Ferndale MI.
    Artist: Xotic Basses/AccuGroove

  12. Yeah, Mr. Munji is correct to ask. There's always a green Volkswagen in this kind of story, usually beat and faded with one red fender full of bondo.
  13. Josh Ryan

    Josh Ryan - that dog won't hunt, Monsignor. Staff Member Supporting Member

    Mar 24, 2001
    Great story, it takes a long time, but people like Slimey usually end up right where they belong.
  14. Unfortunately, not enough.

    There are plenty of 'slimey' people that most people don't see through their shroud of BS, and for some reason never have to account for their sliminess.
  15. andruca


    Mar 31, 2004
    Madrid (Spain)
    Revenge is not decent... but it's DIRTY THERAPEUTIC!!!!

  16. MikeBass

    MikeBass Supporting Member

    Nov 4, 2003
    Ferndale MI.
    Artist: Xotic Basses/AccuGroove
    HELL YEAH!!!!!!!!!!!!!
  17. LiquidMidnight


    Dec 25, 2000
  18. PunkerTrav


    Jul 18, 2001
    Canada & USA
    Thats great. I bet you must be so satisfied with the way things turned out. Cheers to you and your band. Good luck tomorrow! :bassist: :D
  19. Justice


    May 24, 2002
    Houston TX.
    Thanks for the good words everyone! We had a blast and it was the best crowd we have had at that venue..

    we got some good pics at the show if you want to check them out.


    Gotta get them organized and added to the website later.
  20. Syeknom


    Oct 17, 2004
    Leuven, Belgium
    Great story =)