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Not Sure How To Handle This

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [BG]' started by Kmonk, Mar 29, 2013.

  1. Kmonk


    Oct 18, 2012
    South Shore, Massachusetts
    Endorsing Artist: Fender, Spector, Ampeg, Curt Mangan Strings, Nordstrand Pickups, Korg Keyboards
    Earlier this week, my mother passed away. She was always very supportive of my music and would often come to see whatever band I happened to be playing with. She was a huge music fan and once saw Frank Sinatra, Elvis Presley and Alice Cooper all in the same month. She also saw Pink Floyd, The Rolling Stones and many other bands. She once told me about a band that was looking for a bass player. I auditioned and got the gig. This led to touring and working with many well known artists.

    Here is the problem. I have been in a band for almost 2 years. I've known the guitar player for around 30 years. Not one person from my current band came to my mother's wake. Several people from a band that I was in 30 years ago and hadn't spoken with in at least 10 years, stopped by to pay their respects but nobody from my current band. I'm not sure why, but this really bothers me. Maybe it's because I would have been there for them if they had a death in the family.
  2. Floyd Eye

    Floyd Eye Banned

    Feb 21, 2010
    St. Louis
    Are you friends with your current band mates outside of the band context? If so, then it would bother me too. If not, not so much I guess.

    Why are you no longer in the band you were in 30 years ago?
  3. mongo2


    Feb 17, 2008
    Da Shaw
    My mother, father, and brother all passed away within a few years while I was in the same band. We were also friends outside of the band. None of them showed up at any of their wakes or funerals but I didn't expect them to so I didn't think twice about it. Come to think of it I didn't attend the wake or funeral of the father of one of the members who passed away a bit later, though I extended my condolences as they all did for me.

    Years later we had all moved on and lost contact. Ironically, the last time we got together was at the funeral of one of the band members.
  4. Floyd Eye

    Floyd Eye Banned

    Feb 21, 2010
    St. Louis
    My two band mates and I are close friends. We attend all of each other's family events. Not that all bands or all friends are like that. We are though.
  5. Oren Hudson

    Oren Hudson

    Dec 25, 2007
    Gastonia, NC
    Others reactions and actions to situations like this are, IME, often perplexing. People that you're close with in band situations, or even other situations, and know your parent(s) will often disappoint in times like these. I can't explain it, but I have also been a victim of this. A little support at a time like this, shows a just basic display of respect and friendship. :meh:
  6. First, deepest condolences about your mom's passing. She sounds like she was one in a million.

    I agree with what Floyd said: It depends on your relationships with your bandmates. I understand too that not seeing your bandmates was to some extent hurtful. But your bandmates from way back when made the effort, which is a vivid commentary on the depth of your relationships with them. When we hold others to the high expectations we have of ourselves, disappointment is often the result.

    Different people deal with wakes/funerals/mourning in different ways. You're the "Count on me to be there" guy, which is wonderful, but not everyone else is. Maybe they don't think they're tight enough with you for it to matter (although 30-year guitarist I can't fathom). Perplexing, as Oren Hudson described it.

    I guess you have to decide for yourself the extent to which you want to hold on to your hurt, but you really should process it, for your own good. You didn't ask me, but my advice would be either a) let it go over time as part of your mourning process or b) Bring it up with your bandmates very soon. "Y'know guys, after a couple years together, I thought I'd see you there and was let down when I didn't." Don't demand to know why they weren't there; that's really not your business IMO. If they're good guys, they'll understand the way you feel and apologize sincerely. Forgive them, let it go and count off the next song.

    In closing, "let it go" means "for good."

    Losing a parent is tough. My dad's been gone 20+ years. Take care of yourself and good luck with the bandmates. It'll be OK.
  7. Did they even know your mother - either way, people are different and not everyone does funerals, wakes, etc, so I wouldn’t take it personal. PS: I'm sorry to hear/read of your loss. :(

  8. PSS: good advice posted above - “let it go”.
  9. tycobb73


    Jul 23, 2006
    Grand Rapids MI
    A guitarist I was playing with invited me to his parents big wedding anniersary party. I told him that if it was a regular party sure I'd be there. But I felt out of place intruding on an event that really needed to be shared with familly and close friends of the parents.
  10. ElectroVibe


    Mar 2, 2013
    A similar thing happened with me. I didn't really expect any of them to show up since they hadn't really met them much. I feel like its a certain kind of person who likes to attend funerals, or else someone that was close to them for a while. Not just close to an immediate family member.
  11. Kmonk


    Oct 18, 2012
    South Shore, Massachusetts
    Endorsing Artist: Fender, Spector, Ampeg, Curt Mangan Strings, Nordstrand Pickups, Korg Keyboards
    I have known the guitar player for over 30 years so yes, we are friends. The keyboard player and I are also friends. We talk on the phone several times per week and even get together for lunch occasionally. I guess my feeling on it is that if someone in their family had died I would have attended the wake to pay my respects. I believe that's what friends and colleagues should do.
  12. PlaysAJunker


    Feb 21, 2013
    It's hard to go to wakes of friends' family members. You don't know if you should go or not, and then you really don't want to go anyway to what is generally a depressing event, so you rationalize that nobody there will miss you if you don't show up.

    If you want people to come to the wake, invite them. They will be flattered that you thought of them in your time of need, as someone who they depend on for support. But absent an invitation, well, I can only speak for myself, but I have more wakes to attend than I would prefer solely on family and direct personal friends. I have zero desire to extend my network of funeral/wake attendance. It's hard enough already to drive past the rope store on the corner as it is.

    Hey, I am real sorry for your loss. That is not easy at all. My father told me the other day he has prostate cancer. I went home, got drunk and cried. He will almost definitely die of old age before the cancer gets him (he's almost ninety), but . . when it's Mom or Dad it's really hard.
  13. scottbass

    scottbass Bass lines like a big, funky giant

    Jul 13, 2004
    Southern MN
    I won't usually attend a wake or funeral of a person I didn't know personally unless it is one of my wife's relatives. If it's a close family member of a friend (or bandmate) of mine, I send a card with a personal note expressing my condolences and a (monetary) memorial gift. I prefer it if the obituary/funeral notice suggests a charity that is somehow connected to the deceased or their family.

    Did the members of your current band know your mother personally? Did the members of the band you were in 30 years ago know her personally?

    My opinion is that these events - wake and funeral - are a celebration of the person's life. If I didn't know that person, I am not inclined to celebrate. Also, it can be uncomfortable to attend an event where the primary topic of discussion is the life of someone I never knew.

    But that's the way I feel. You obviously don't feel the same way. That's 100% OK. But I encourage you to not hold it against others - members of your current band - who don't feel the same way you do.
  14. my condolences, my father passed away a little over a year ago and was also very helpful and influential in my musical activities, as was obviously your mother to you.

    What I found going through that experience was that some people simply can't bear being reminded of their own mortality and a funeral and related events certainly brings that into sharp focus. That could be part of what's happening with your band mates.
  15. SlowMike


    Nov 28, 2012
    I'm sorry to hear about your mom. It's great that you and she had a love of music to share with each other.

    Because their absence from the wake is bothering you, I'd bring it up with them when the time is right. No need to be dramatic or get nasty about it, but I'd at least get it out there so it doesn't simmer long term.
  16. FWIW: personally, I don’t go to funerals, wakes, etc, unless I have to.

    So out of curiosity, what are you going to do now - let it go, let it eat at you, talk, yell, to those who didn't attend, quit the band?
  17. Kmonk


    Oct 18, 2012
    South Shore, Massachusetts
    Endorsing Artist: Fender, Spector, Ampeg, Curt Mangan Strings, Nordstrand Pickups, Korg Keyboards
    Nobody likes to go to wakes or funerals but I feel that we have an obligation to attend to support friends and family. It's the right thing to do. My son is 23 and won't go near a casket. I respect that but at least he is there when there is a death in the family.

    Like I said, if one of my band mates lost their mother, I would be there. It's not like a cousin or uncle. My parents divorced when I was 8 years old and I haven't seen or spoken to my father in more than 30 years but he showed up. It bothers me that members of my band didn't show up. My mother loved music and supported me no matter what I did. She loved the fact that I was the only one in the family who played and would want me to continue on with my current band and play as much as possible. I've decided to bring up the fact that people I played with 30 years ago showed up and leave it at that. Maybe my current band mates will get the message and realize that they should have showed up. I can't see destroying a good band over the fact that they didn't come to the wake.
  18. Hmm, at this point, what exactly do you expect from them, and if they don’t meet your expectations exactly are you going to hold it against them?

    If you don’t have any immediate gigs on the books - maybe you can take a little time off from band business and allow some time for personal grieving and healing?

    In the meantime, hopefully chatting here helps a little - it’s never easy losing a family member.
  19. FunkHead

    FunkHead Supporting Member

    Mar 10, 2007
    Kmonk, Don't read too much into it. Your mother would want the Band to remain in tact. You'll need the music to help grieve.

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