On-stage antics...

Discussion in 'Band Management [BG]' started by Mankind, Oct 27, 2003.

  1. Mankind


    Oct 20, 2003
    What do you do on stage at a gig to get the crowd energetic and happy? I'm not only talking about before and after songs but during too. Currently i just do random things during songs to make them laugh or to get them more energetic so we can get a good reception. :)
  2. Play good songs.

    And play them well.
  3. embellisher

    embellisher Holy Ghost filled Bass Player Staff Member Supporting Member

    Hmm... Bass Humor and Gig Stories, or Band Management and Performance? Certainly not Miscellaneous!

    Let's try Band Management and Performance.:)
  4. no4mk1


    Feb 21, 2003
    Seattle, WA
    Hmmm... I crack jokes about our singers enormous ego between songs... The fact that a good percentage of our audience is usually his ex-girlfriends, usually helps them go over pretty well! :D


    I will not be held responsible if you try this and get kicked out of your band
  5. Eric Moesle

    Eric Moesle Supporting Member

    Sep 21, 2001
    Columbus OH
    Best thing you can do "in between songs" is to ELIMATE "in between songs".

    Dead air is the worst thing to kill a show's vibe. Run as many songs together as you can. Go see a pro-level concert, there's very little, if any, space between songs. No amount of joking or antics can surpass avoiding the dead air altogether.
  6. pbd

    pbd Commercial User

    Jul 17, 2003
    Metro Detroit
    owner Procables N Sound
    Even if you plan ahead that somone is always playing the beginning of the next song while the rest of the group gets ready or talking over the background.
    Just like on the radio.
    Most professionals will practice every nuance of the performance, this includes what they say and how in between each song so it sounds natural and not 'made up'. Haveing spent 17 years in professional theatre I got to see many rehearsals and the amount of energy the pro's put out to an empty room was the same as their performance....they practiced what they wanted to happen!
  7. In my opinion -even though this is very important- it's not enough!
    You have to be aware of the fact that the people in front of the stage don't only have ears but also eyes!
    Plus, most people (I mean non-musicians) can't distinguish bad playing from bad sound (caused by unfortunate acoustics of the venue etc.). So even if you might be giving your best playing your instrument, they could still get the impression you are not!. But in that case an entertaining performance (on the grounds of spontaneousness) can make up for it.

    For example: Not long ago I saw the Joe Jackson Band in concert - their sound (and especially the bass!) was rather terrible, but the visual aspects of the show plus the musicians' spontaneous reactions to the audience (like people yelling stuff) made it a great evening!
  8. I move to the music. I don't jump around or leap into the audience during a part of the song where it doesnt feel fitting.

    Recently I saw a local band, and during a really slow part of a song, they were like slow dancing with themselves...which looked really weird, but cool. Then when the song picked back up (this was a hardcore band) the rhythm guitarist and their vocalist leaping out into the crowd, the vocalist screaming AND beating up people in the pit, and the guitarist circling and thrashing around.

    They werent that great of a band, but it was a helluva show.
  9. Re: stage antics, etc...

    I was just talking to the owner of one of the largest live music venues in town. He told me straight up, he hires good entertainers. He's even fired bands who play very very well, but look like they're not enjoying it. It's not about being the best bass player / guitarist / etc., it's not just about playing songs really well, you gotta have fun with it and show it.

    Sometimes I'll be a bit silly in order to show my enthusiasm and hopefully be a bit more fun than the next band:

    1) run around the dance floor in between dancers while playing
    2) do a James Brown shuffle across the stage
    3) put the headstock of my bass onto the stage, and walk a circle around it
    4) do a Brittany Spears 'forearm side to side'
    5) jump up and down

    Not many club owners, dancers, or listeners want to see a band who looks like they're bored.

  10. Mankind


    Oct 20, 2003
    What defines a good entertainer to say a performer?
    My mates band (who are about to be signed) have a great performing singer but has the stage presence of a goat.
  11. Exactly!
  12. ...yes, I agree to that also!
  13. pbd

    pbd Commercial User

    Jul 17, 2003
    Metro Detroit
    owner Procables N Sound
    Take acting classes. It will teach you stage presence and ways to draw the audience into your performance. A couple of the best performers that I ever saw could turn it on and off as needed. Ben Vereen and Lesley Ugams (sp?). They produced so much energy in their rehearsals. They needed to give each other their best because that produced an energetic performance. Does the quarterback throw short passes when he needs to go long for the game? What I'm trying to say is....you should practice the other stuff. The in between songs stuff.
    As Blimplizkit say's, "He told me straight up, he hires good entertainers" People want to be entertained!!
  14. "Practice the in-between-songs stuff"? What about being spontaneous?
  15. I do spinkicks, headbanging, humping mah bass, "mallets" (as if your bass was a mallet and you were slamming it on air), I also really get into the music.
  16. pbd

    pbd Commercial User

    Jul 17, 2003
    Metro Detroit
    owner Procables N Sound
    Are you going to be spontaneous with something you've never tried before?
    fivesevenoh, do you practice these?

    If you always have something to fall back on there should never be any silence or lack of activity on stage. That's what I was trying to get at. Spontanaety is a good thing!
    Practice playing under while someone is talking, or playing a mini jam session while someone changes guitars/string/tunes/etc.
  17. jive1

    jive1 Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member Commercial User

    Jan 16, 2003
    Owner/Retailer: Jive Sound
    Unfortunately someone being spontaneous can be a series of um...errr.you_know...yeah....um...err...ok..here's..our..next..song. This can happen especially if you are a person who doesn't speak in front of people often. Bad habits of not speaking into the mic clearly, or pulling your mouth away from it before you are done with your announcement, or putting your mouth too close to the mic and causing feedback or causing your words to be garbled can also be remedied with a little awareness and practice.
    The more elaborate your antics, the more necessary practice becomes. Gene Simmons practiced his fire breathing thing, it wasn't something spontaneous. If you can practice you improvisational skills as a musician, why can't you practice your improvisational skills as an entertainer.
  18. NJL


    Apr 12, 2002
    San Antonio

    i'm flying you down from Ohio to inform one of the bands that i play with about this. i HATE that they leave a loooooong time between tunes. i just hate it!!

    i can't agree with you more!
  19. But doesn't "improvational" include spontaneousness? For example, when you're (musically) improvising, you're reacting to what the moment gives you! @ jive1