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"Making It"...Should I Even Try???

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [BG]' started by BassGod, Mar 28, 2004.

  1. BassGod


    Jan 21, 2004
    :help: Hey guys, I need some advice...

    I'm in an Alternative rock band, it's a three-piece, bass (also vocals), guitar and drums. We've been told we are really good... we have a 'following' I guess, of maybe 50 people (not much, I know, but that's after only three gigs). We get crowds of all ages and both genders moving and jumping, and everyone has a good time. My problem is this: I've looked at so many small record labels, and not one label lets you send in demos. They "have their hands full" with other bands. I guess it's every band's dream to make it, but (and I'm sorry if I sound like I'm bragging) I beleive we have so much potential, and we're only 14. I guess my question is is it even worth trying to 'get big' anymore? Is there even a chance? Music is so important to me, and my band has worked so hard, but we don't want our hard work to be in vain, we wanna do something with our talent. How do we get our music out there, and make the labels listen to us?
    Thanks so much for any advice :)

  2. canopener


    Sep 15, 2003
    Isle of Lucy
    Finish school.
  3. Keep playing and gathering a fan base, and then after time record companies may be contacting you guys.

    So just give it some time.
  4. temp5897

    temp5897 Guest

    If music is important to you it shouldn't matter if you make it big. In my opinion, someone who truly loves music plays because they have to. I would play by myself in my bedroom for the rest of my life if that was as far as I made it.

    If you want to quit because you might not be a mega star perhaps you should rethink what music really means to you. Otherwise I would say just keep working hard and see how things play out, and always have fun while you're at it.
  5. BassGod


    Jan 21, 2004
    No no, I'm not gonna quit... like I said, I love music, I've been playing some sort of musical instrument for as long as I can remember (piano, bass, guitar, trumpet, drums, etc.). If the band thing doesn't work out, I may try going for a university music degree on double bass. Also, I don't just play because some friends needed a bassist to have a band, I play because I love the instrument. Music means a lot to me, and I'm gonna keep doing it, I just wanted to know if there's a chance of a record deal, or if I shouldn't get my hopes up too high. But no matter what happens, I'll never quit music even if my arms fall off and I go deaf... it's too important.
  6. James Hart

    James Hart

    Feb 1, 2002
    Endorsing Artist: see profile

    well said Jared!

    BassGod: you are 14, had 3 gigs and you're thinking of quiting because you might not make it :confused:
    [edit] I read your new post while I was typing... scratch the last statement :) [/edit]

    Hard work and lots of miles, late nights, sweat and blisters.... if your lucky you'll get your 15 minutes of fame. I've been playing for 24 years and barely made a go of it (supported myself a couple years in cover and original bands). I'm just now starting to be ok with my bass ability... but have a long road ahead of me to get where I *want* to be. I also just recently found a singer worth the hope of *making it* to my ears.... first good one in 12 years.

    But all the while, I do it because I love music. :bassist:
  7. hyperlitem

    hyperlitem Guest

    Jul 25, 2001
    Indianapolis, IN
    Youve got a long way to go. I know alot of bands that have played hundreds of gigs, not been told they were good by whoever, but told that they were good by critics and labels, and are pretty far off from signing a contract of any type. I mean no offense but playing 3 gigs is a joke. Most people on this board have played "not alot of gigs" and thats in the hundreds. Your band sounds similiar to a band like chavelle. I recently got to meet them and hang out with them becuase i work for a minor label in Indianapolis. They came into town so i got to chill with them. They are brothers and have played together for a long time. They played for 5 or so years before they got signed. It has nothing to do with talent either. The white stripes sell a heck of alot more albums that victor wooten ever will. If your music isnt what talent scouts will be the next big thing, or your music is old then your SOL. Talk to many many many bands as you can but it seems like you have an inflated view of how this business works.
  8. hyperlitem

    hyperlitem Guest

    Jul 25, 2001
    Indianapolis, IN
    oh i forgot to say:

    My label accepts bands CD's send it my way, also hopeless records, more of a punk label, accepts unsolicited material also. The label i work for can be found at www.benchmarkrecords.com To anyone else looking we have something of a bass virtuoso thats signed for us, the old vertical horizon bassist, check him out.
  9. BassGod


    Jan 21, 2004
    Thanks for the link hyperlitem, I'll try to send a demo to you. :) And thanks for the advice, I guess I was thinking too far ahead of myself... around here (Ajax, Ontario, Canada) it's pretty hard to find gigs, especially when you're a minor, so I guess I should play more gigs. For now I guess it's just for fun, maybe in the next few years I'll try to get more serious. Like I said though, I'm never gonna quit music. Thanks for your opinions guys. Keep the advice comin'! :)
  10. BassGod


    Jan 21, 2004
    I just looked at your labels site, and it says to send your demo, along with a "press kit"... what's that? (man, I must sound like an idiot. Sorry.) :)
  11. P. Aaron

    P. Aaron Supporting Member

    3 gigs is not a "joke" as much as it's just a start. Romance is in the air right now, but out on the road in front of a different crowd who's waiting for you to finish your set so they can hear "their" band, is where the character of the musician who loves the profession is shaped by every show.
    Just play, develope and learn as much about the business end of music as well. Hyper is right on with his take of what talent scouts are after. Record companies are looking for good bands to help them keep the lights on.
  12. Squidfinger

    Squidfinger I wish I could sing like Rick Danko.

    Jan 7, 2004
    Shreveport LA


    Talent and hard work don't guarantee "making it" in the music biz.
  13. I was on your side of things right up until that statement :p

    I think doing a search in the Band Management forum would probably give you your answer. Also, check out getsigned.com for a bunch of good information. Remember most bands that 'make it' have been slogging around paying their dues for a good number of years - don't expect anything to happen right away. Learn the music business, not just music.
  14. Joey3313


    Nov 28, 2003
    You're from Ajax? If you would know any of the Sum guys or Not By Choice (they're from Ajax, right?), you could possibly tour with them.

    Just a looney thought, but perhaps worth a try.
  15. RicPlaya


    Apr 22, 2003
    The Mitten
    Heck yeah! Go for it...but make sure you stay in school goto college etc. Worse case senerio you get a great education have a good job and are in a kick butt bar band. Best case senerio your house is featured on MTV cribs and we get to see your in home recording studio and all your basses held by your team of hot model girlfriends scantily clad and then they start to undress and look deeply in to each others eyes and ......sorry got a little carried away there.
  16. Schwinn


    Dec 4, 2002
    Sarasota, FL
    No reason you can't stay in school and still "go for it" by playing gigs and becoming a tighter band. You've got a lot of years ahead, enjoy the ride.
  17. rickbass

    rickbass Supporting Member

    You don't sound like an "idiot" to me at all.......just very young.

    Here's a link to an inexpensive e-book that explains a lot - http://www.getsigned.com/Merchant2/merchant.mvc?Screen=PROD&Store_Code=GMM&Product_Code=KILPRESSBK

    However, a few things it didn't cover that I consider important;

    > Moving your band to one of the prime music cities after your band's gigs become sold-out "events" in your local market - cities such as LA, Miami, Austin, Chicago, Atlanta, Nashville (for C&W artists)........and others.
    > Lining up a good entertainment lawyer and dependable booking agents
    > submitting your same demo CD to the same A&R people using different band names/artwork in the hope that they'll listen to one of the CD's because one band name/packaging appeals to them more than the others.

    Nonetheless, as others here have said - stick with that education. FWIW, I started doing national tours after my band got signed in the 70's. I was half-way through college but I managed to get all 4 years in due time. I never regretted it. Music can spit you out as fast as it can make you the "flavor of the month." A decent education lasts a lifetime.
  18. Bad Brains

    Bad Brains Banned

    Jan 7, 2004
    Detroit, michigan
    This can be a complicated subject.

    As far as being 14, you should be more concerned about school other then making it in a band. But that's just my opinion. However i do wish at age 14 i had those kind of goals and dreams, instead i waiting until i was 20 to start playing bass. I almost feel like i wasted so many years not playing and being involved in music, i feel as if it's too late for me.

    Then again i really only started playing as a hobby, i still really don't have an interest in making it (probably because i started playing so late in life compared to others), but i would like to be involved in a band at some point. It really is hard trying to find fun people to jam with. Most people i know around here like to lable the music they play "i wan't to be in a punk band, we have to play punk music, we need a formula". I don't like that way of jamming, i just like to get together with people and just improvise and have fun. If i eventually find the right people to start making music with, then that's more then i could ever hope for.

    I strongly believe that the days of no name bands comming out of nowhere and making it are over. It still does happen, i can't deny that, but these days it seems like you have to know someone on the inside in order to get anywhere. It's harder then ever to make it now because kids these days have so much. My friends 15 year old brother has a band and they already have a CD they made themselves. !0 years ago this would have been unheard of.

    sorry for the rambling, guess the point is just have fun and don't even worry about making it.
  19. thrash_jazz


    Jan 11, 2002
    Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
    Artist: JAF Basses, Circle K Strings
    Some great advice here.

    Honestly, though, I'd say that you don't need to bother with a record label just yet. Even if you do get signed, (which, unfortunately, is next to impossible to do these days) they will likely want you to tour, which may mess up your school schedule.

    School can really work to your advantage if you play your cards right. Try to get in touch with the music department and/or student council and tell them you want to play. If you think about it, this gives you more access to an age group that really loves their music than the rest of us have.

    This should build your fan base even more. What you should be working towards right now, besides having fun, is more gigging.

    Three gigs is not the time to be thinking about record labels. Compliments are nice to get, but don't let them get to you, because in music, no matter what you've done, there's always more to do and to learn.
  20. permagrin


    May 1, 2003
    San Pedro, CA
    A lot of truth in this thread. Also realize that record companies no longer develop talent. Unless there are extrordinary circumstances, no one is going to sign you unless you've paid your dues and come through the other side on top - that is, you're EXPECTED to have supported/headlined numerous gigs, sold plenty of cd's/merchandise, etc. A&R scouts never trust themselves, I remember one guy way back when (early 90s) who told me he didn't care if he thought you sucked out loud, if there's girls dancing/singling along with the tunes, you're selling t-shirts and tapes (yes, it was mostly tapes back then), and creating a "buzz", that's what he was interested in. And with the internet, they expect even more to be done on your own.

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