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Passive aggressive guitarist wars

Discussion in 'Band Management [BG]' started by Joel S., Dec 9, 2008.

  1. Joel S.

    Joel S. Reserved for future witty use...

    Jul 9, 2008
    This is more of a share story type of deal, I'm not really looking for advice on how to deal with it.

    Cover band with 2 guitarists, lead and rhythm. Neither is that good, the lead is solid with chords and as a rhythm guitarist he'd be passable, but his leads can be pretty painful (lack of feel, playing out of tune/off key). The rhythm isn't that good at all, don't play with feel, or dynamics, just kinda beats on the guitar. Doesn't practice, so at rehearsals, before every song it's him wanking, LOUDLY, trying to remember it. They're good guys, but frustrating as musicians.

    I've had issues with these guys before (volume wars, "oh XX is playing too loud/wrong part", etc), but now, since I'm in a few other bands, instead of stressing, I've just decided to hang back and just do my part. This band doesn't gig that regularly, and they aren't all that great so I figure I'll just try and have fun with it since I have other, better bands that I can express myself in. So, here's the latest:

    I show up to rehearsal a few days ago after having not rehearsed with these guys for a while (only get together before gigs, and they only gig once every few months) and lo and behold, the rhythm guitarist has a shiny new Gibson SG. Really nice axe, the "typical" SG color, red/black. He used to play a MIM Fender Fat Strat with modified pickups. I dig the SG, sweet looking guitar, sounds good, but still, he should've spent money on lessons, not gear, because he just looks like a poser now considering his skill level. Amusingly enough, the guitar was cutting out during rehearsals, he got it from GC, so I wouldn't be surprised if it was damaged.

    I get a call today, and it's the lead guitarist. He informs me that he just bought a shiny new Gibson Les Paul Standard. He used to play through a Jackson, and always banged on about how great it's tone was, how he liked it better than Fenders, etc. Clearly he decided to go with a Les Paul to try and "one up" the Rhythm. He too needs to sink more money in learning how to properly solo, instead of learning solos incorrectly and not properly practicing.

    Anyway, I'm certain I'm not alone here, any other interesting tales of passive aggressive guitar wars.
  2. DaveF


    Dec 22, 2007
    New Westminster, BC
    Haha, I know that feeling.

    I guitarist I used to jam with kept showing up with all these extreme pedals (Keeley mods and vintage ibanez) and vintage guitars (gretch and aria)...

    We would be playing in E minor, but if the chord changed he was COMPLETELY lost. Like, he didn't even know any open chords except E, G and A. I had to show him how to play a "D"!!!
  3. NWB


    Apr 30, 2008
    Kirkland, WA
    Too funny. I've known guitarists who use effects to cover-up their lack of ability.

    I've also been in the position of showing the guitarist how to play certain chords. It can't feel very good to have a bass player showing you how to play guitar!!:eek:
  4. Eilif

    Eilif Supporting Member

    Oct 1, 2001
    That's almost as funny as those bassists who keep buying more basses and effects and amps, and spend all their time on talkbass. Should spend the money on lessons, and thier time practicing, but... ;)

    Excuse me, I have to go pick one of my 10 basses to practice with. Right after I check the "BG" classified forum one more time...
  5. dreadheadbass


    Dec 17, 2007
    we have aguitarist that sinks money into pointless gear instead of stuff he really needs
    i cant fault his playing and he's a guitarist that every bass player should have (doesnt try to drown me out and if i'm doing a run he'll hold back till i'm done)

    anyways he's after yet another guitar (flying vee i think) he's already spend 3 arms and 2 legs on fx pedals and other guitars thing is he has a beat up marshall combo amp and its really embarrasing when we turn up to gigs because were all sporting big rigs of doom and busted guitars and bass's held together with tape and he's stood there with a shiny new guitar and a 50w heap of scrap lol
  6. Hehe...good story. I played in a band with another chick that ran her mouth to everyone how she had been playing for 10 years, yada yada yada. Meanwhile you would have thought she just picked up the guitar a few months ago, a mediocre guitarist-at best! She had 8 guitars. including a Fender American Strat and a Flying V, in which she thought she was the $#!@ because she owned. Of course there were all the amps and loads of effects pedals that she didnt know how to use properly. Heres the kicker: she WAS getting lessons...although she wasnt paying her teacher w/ cash ;) So getting lessons is not always the answer, I believe that some people are just not meant to play music not matter how good the lessons are.
  7. UncleBalsamic


    Jul 8, 2007
    What's wrong with buying things you want even if you have a low "skill level". Doesn't hurt me if peopel want to spend their money like this.
  8. smogg


    Mar 27, 2007
    NPR, Florida
    I'm not crazy, I'm just a little unwell
    Who knows, maybe new guitars will motivate them to practice more at home.......
    it could happen :D
  9. I only know how to play like 3 or 4 actual chords on the guitar. I don't know what they actually are so I power chord my way around cause power chords are the bomb and I play punk music.
  10. the art guy

    the art guy Supporting Member

    Jun 19, 2008
    Excuse me, I have to go pick one of my 10 basses to practice with. Right after I check the "BG" classified forum one more time...[/QUOTE]


    and + 1000;)
  11. That was plain EPIC.

    GAS strikes everyone. Especially guitarists as there too many options to play with. Sometimes really great gear will inspire you to practice and better yourself. Could be better than getting lessons and paying for it with something other than cash:ninja::ninja::ninja:
  12. My husband had anti-GAS. Many years ago he found a beautiful Guild Starfire in a pawn shop, but never learned to play it. A few years ago he started taking lessons but he was concerned that he looked like a poseur with this classic guitar. So a friend of his offered to sell him a damaged guitar for $150. It turned out to be a really nice Hamer flametop (SATF) that looked GREAT from the front, but had no real value because of a gash on the back and apparently the neck had been broken and repaired. He was still concerned about not playing well enough for this guitar so he bought a bottom-of-the line Ibanez RG. It was a real "three bears" situation. The Ibanez was "just right".

    Now he's improved enough that he's not embarrassed to play the Hamer in public. Pretty soon I expect the Guild will start coming out of it's case. :)

  13. Mystic Michael

    Mystic Michael Hip No Ties

    Apr 1, 2004
    New York, NY
    I just can't understand why anyone who can play would want to continue to play with those who can't play. I mean, no matter how "good guys" they are, how much fun could that possibly be? :confused:

    Been there, done that. Never again... :eyebrow:

  14. crow01


    Sep 1, 2008
    these types of people i hate. trying to show up who has the most expensive gear. they had made fun of my squier. and i can play better guitar than them,even better drums. i used to have expensive gear but i'm passed that.

    i think these people are similar to the scenario. where you go to a fancy restaurant and the host says, "do you have a reservation?", you say "no" and he laughs at your face.

    in a previous band, this guy kept on trying to sell me a $2k bass, so i could look cool with his -a thousand dollar fender. screw him.
  15. well, remember, if your not in the contest, you don't really have to worry much lol.
  16. It's NOT fun, of course. But getting a band together is hard. And sometimes you all started out with similar abilities and styles, but you've grown and they haven't. You're good friends and you've known each other for years. Maybe you work together. Your family likes to hang with their family. You've been encouraging them and making CDs for them in hopes that they'll somehow "get it". They really look forward to band night, but you know that it will probably be the first time that week that the guitar has been out of the case. And you also know that the odds are good there will be a new effect or even a new guitar - but never a new guitar teacher. You're watching Craigslist, checking the on-line forums and the music store bulletin boards, but you don't see anything that works. So rather than start yet another bitch session with the drummer, you try to keep a positive attitude - don't give in to the temptation to slack-off yourself - and keep working on your own chops. Your day will come.

  17. in a band i was in- expensive gear & low skills. and spent a lot of practice time fiddlign with his gear.. One practice I walked in, and the keys player had stuck the photo of Robert Johnson on the guitar player's face high amp stack. When said guitar player showed up, the keys player made a comment to the effect of "look what Robert did with that ****** assed guitar." Unfortunately, it went right over the guitar player's head........
  18. I don't know... I've also been in bands with prima donna d-bags that know they're good, but are never as good as their attitudes would suggest.

    I'd much MUCH rather play with vaguely competent players that are "good guys" than guys who've got the skillZ on their instrument but no interpersonal skillZ.

    I still can't quite grasp the concept of being in a band with guys you're not friends with as some sort of solely professional arrangement. I understand taking a fill-in gig with strangers, but one of my fill in gigs is with a band of guys that are pretty much complete strangers to each other despite being in a band for several years with each other.
  19. kesslari

    kesslari Groovin' with the Big Dogs Supporting Member

    Dec 21, 2007
    Santa Cruz Mtns, California
    Lark in the Morning Instructional Videos; Audix Microphones
    You should be able to have both.
    You're a bass player.
    Women groove to your beat.
    Bands want you.

    Life is too short to play with jerks...
  20. Ditch 'em! There are plenty of passive aggressive gui****s, though. :atoz:

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