Just threw the BL out of the band

Discussion in 'Band Management [BG]' started by Flatwound, Jul 25, 2021.

  1. Flatwound

    Flatwound Supporting Member

    Sep 9, 2000
    San Diego
    It's hard to put a guy out of the band that he put together. But we just did that.

    About a week ago, Ron, the drummer, called a meeting of everyone except Dick, the BL. I had an idea what it was going to be about, especially when he mentioned "personnel changes". Dick has made it clear that he is the BL, and it's his way or the highway. We've been together for around two years, with the covid break, and had finally started gigging. But Dick is so overbearing, and such a pompous boob that no one is having fun. Dick is fond of saying, "This isn't a democracy."

    OK, I know we need to have a band leader, and I also know it's not going to be me. So I don't mind someone coming up with set lists, etc, if that's what they want to do. I like having some input, however, and that wasn't happening. In any case, Dick has a hard time getting his parts right (guitar), and is generally crabby and insulting with everyone. I'm not a very confrontational guy, so I kind of backed off and played my bass. I can sing, but Dick wants to sing, even though he can't carry a tune in a bucket. He has lots of mics, but none of them make him sound good. Still, he's going to sing, come hell or high water. We have a lead singer, Lana, who is really great. Great front person, fantastic voice. Dick wants to sing harmonies with her, but he can't even find the melody.

    When we had our meeting (without Dick), I found that Ron, Don (keyboards), and Lana all had much deeper anger and resentments than I did. I mean, I don't like being insulted and ordered around, but these guys were serious. So, either the band was going to split up, or we were going to get rid of Dick. I pointed out that Dick started the band, and brought us all together, although I think Ron and Don have played together before. I said that it was kind of a rough deal to throw out the guy who started the band. Everybody agreed, but Ron pointed out that after two years, Dick was still goofing up the same guitar leads, was still overbearing, and hadn't improved. Alas, this is true. Also, due to the conflicts engendered by Dick, we were in danger of losing Lana.

    So today was the meeting. Ron had said he was willing to be the [anal orifice], but he wanted us all to be there to let Dick know that this was a band thing, and not just him. But then after we had aired our grievances, Ron didn't deliver the final blow. I said, "Should we get to the point?" I was surprised that he was beating around the bush, even though things were getting a bit heated. Everybody looked at me. So I looked at Dick and said, "We want to be done with you." I figure that's pretty clear.

    I've been thrown out of a band in the past. I didn't like it. So I didn't want to be the one to drop the hammer, but suddenly everyone had stage fright. Oh well.

    Just so you know, we're all seasoned citizens, the youngest being 57. We really didn't want to hurt Dick, but we wanted to take steps to be more than mediocre, which won't happen with Dick on guitar. None of us expects to make a living doing this, but we do want to have some fun, and be able to talk to each other without the BL always butting in.
    Tank88, JKos, Gregc57 and 77 others like this.
  2. Mark 63

    Mark 63 Supporting Member

    Apr 3, 2012
    If a band is for fun, everyone should get a say in the music and the arrangements. Just bringing a group of people together does not confer permanent authority.
    The way I see it, I have 1 demanding job where people get to tell me what to do and how they want it done. I don’t need another one.
  3. It happened to me too. Fired the leader…

    not quite that easy, long story. But I put the band together.
  4. Lowendchamp


    Jun 27, 2021
    Shelton WA
    Sounds like just a crabby dick to me
    Rick_Bass, design, Artman and 12 others like this.
  5. gln1955

    gln1955 Supporting Member

    Aug 25, 2014
    Ohio, USA
    With all the issues with Dick, it would have been pretty easy for me to drop the hammer.

    I guess you could have all just quit and reformed without him next week.
  6. Ross W. Lovell

    Ross W. Lovell

    Oct 31, 2015

    Try to remember.....you did not fire him.

    He fired himself. His behavior, not yours or anyone else's.
    BruceG63, design, RSBBass and 16 others like this.
  7. DrThumpenstein

    DrThumpenstein Living for the groove Supporting Member

    Feb 8, 2015
    St Louis, MO
    No one should have to put up with abuse and insults. Good riddance. You really don’t owe him anything. Shouldn’t be hard to find the guitarist who can actually play.

    Rock on
    design, The_Meatwagon, Artman and 7 others like this.
  8. LBS-bass


    Nov 22, 2017
    BTDT but in our case the band just never got back together after Covid, and then eventually the remaining members got together to start something new. I was the one who had to tell the former BL that we were not moving forward with the band after the hiatus. It fell to me because we are good friends and I figured I should be the one to tell him.

    It is so much easier now with the drama-free contingent getting together. In our case, the BL was also quite talented, but other issues rose to a non-negotiable level of stress that no one wanted to resume dealing with.
    Spectrum, Artman, eriky4003 and 6 others like this.
  9. Flatwound

    Flatwound Supporting Member

    Sep 9, 2000
    San Diego
    Ron, the drummer, is pretty experienced and will probably be the de facto BL for now.

    Not long ago, I was talking to Lana about piriformis muscle pain, while Dick was talking to Don. Dick turns around and says, “Hey! What are you guys talking about?” He was afraid we were talking about something music related, and he wasn’t in control of it.
    Mr_Moo, Artman, Winslow and 3 others like this.
  10. Killing Floor

    Killing Floor Supporting Member

    Feb 7, 2020
    Austin, TX
    Sounds like you just became band leader. They all looked to you to do the lift. Congrats.
  11. Ketbass

    Ketbass Supporting Member

    Jun 20, 2020
    Dayton, OH
    I just let the band former go a few months ago. I say former rather than leader because he was the guy who got us together and him and I really clicked well together. He’s a drummer. But honestly, he didn’t contribute anything musically to the group, i.e. music, arrangements, charts, etc… When I let him know it want working, it turned out to be a relief for both of us and we parted amicably.
    Hover-Rich likes this.
  12. Sounds like the perfect time to stage a coup and overthrow the dictator.
    sotua, Artman, Winslow and 6 others like this.
  13. DrThumpenstein

    DrThumpenstein Living for the groove Supporting Member

    Feb 8, 2015
    St Louis, MO
    Well, you were talking about a pain in the ass!:smug:
    Hover-Rich, klyph, JoshS and 5 others like this.
  14. Ampslut


    May 15, 2017
    Barrackville WV
    So you all quit and reformed under the same name
  15. A few years back I got "fired" from a folk band I was in. The singer was the BL and a total diva. She was extremely out of date when it came to social media, and refused to allow anyone else to help out, (myself being about 10 years younger than the rest of them, was a little more savvy with instagram) she also would turn down big gigs saying they weren't paying us enough, but take on free gigs that were more suitable for one or two people with acoustic guitars, not a full band with drums and bass, saying the exposure would be worth it. Those things I could tolerate, but when she insisted an unamplified acoustic bass could keep up with 3 acoustic guitars and a full drum kit, I politely told her that was not the case. She cut me off, saying she's played bass before, so she knows it will work. After that disagreement, she started accusing me of rushing the songs(even though she counted in every song too fast and expected us to just guess how fast she planned on playing them that time) and claimed I needed to learn dynamics after a gig where she insisted I not bring an amp and let the sound guy do everything through the PA. I had no monitor, couldn't hear myself so I just played everything fairly gently. Listening to the videos my wife took, it sounded like the sound guy just cranked the bass know, so the short scale bass I was playing was just a wall of mud. I told the drummer I was planning on quitting, he said I should wait it out. The next day I found an ad the singer had posted looking for another bassist. Told her she could pay me for my time, and that would be fine with me. Needless to say, if they want to treat you as an employee, they better be paying you for your time.
  16. Kukulkan61

    Kukulkan61 Inactive

    Feb 8, 2011
    Northern Arizona
    Dick was a Dick...
  17. You lasted a lot longer than I would have...I wouldn't have put up with that crap for 5 minutes. If someone has some constructive criticism about my playing, or the band, or whatever, it needs to be imparted respectfully. If you are a pro, putting up with pyscho band-leaders is just the cost of doing business (if you want examples, check out Bill Crow's book). But weekend warriors or amateurs who are really playing for the fun of it shouldn't have to put up with that type of nonsense. IMHO, everybody did what they had to. Maybe the BL will learn something.
  18. Mantis Tobaggan

    Mantis Tobaggan Supporting Member

    Sep 9, 2015
    St. Petersburg, FL
    Sounds like he brought it on himself.
  19. Dick wasn't a BL.

    Any Dick who isn't a BL but acts like a BL is still just a Dick.

    Glad to see you got rid of your Dick. Most bands do better without a Dick in it.
    FenderB, jamro217, pcake and 2 others like this.
  20. 40Hz

    40Hz Supporting Member

    May 24, 2006
    Ok. Fine.

    Then how about you all quit Dick’s band and immediately form your own new band if it bothers you so much to fire him?
    Kusodensha, JettBlaq and Mk90 like this.