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Prepping for my first gig ever.

Discussion in 'Band Management [BG]' started by xxfaux_punkxx, Apr 23, 2010.

  1. xxfaux_punkxx


    Mar 18, 2010
    So I'm not looking at gigging anytime soon (but I like to dream). Anyway I was talking to my guitar friend about first gigs and she flat out told me "Your first gig is going to suck. You'll be insanly nervous". There's a lot of truth to this (as far as knowing myself goes). So I was thinking to prep myself for my first gig I should start hitting open mic nights. It's one thing to suck by yourself but when you suck and it forces your band mates to suck that's a whole 'nother matter. A chain is only as strong as your weakest link.

    Anyway I was wondering what anyone else did to help prep for their first gig?
  2. slaps76


    Jul 10, 2008
    Medford, MA
    I was really nervous during my first gig, at least at first, then I settled down. There was a pretty good crowd too. Just keep a positive attitude best you can, remember it's for fun, and most mistakes go unoticed by the crowd if you're worried about that(at least the minor ones). Other than that, think the only other thing I did to prep was drink some beer, but that's not good advice haha.
  3. crack-boom


    Jun 14, 2008
    New Zealand
    I was nervous, but I just manned up and did it haha. No point getting all uptight about it cause that will just be a breeding ground for mistakes. Know your stuff well and just be as confident as possible in your own ability. :)
  4. only way to do it is to just do it. I played for a LONG time, got 2 degrees from a music college and was making a living as a songwriter before I ever played live. I don't consider myself "good" but I can keep up musically.

    my first gig was soo horrific I left after the first set (didnt even close out my tab). just gotta do it. it has gotten easier, but I play w/ long time pros who've played together for years so I spend a lot of time scrambling.

    fwiw it's the lump in my chest that makes me want to do it . . . been too long since I had that! I can't see a time in my future I'm not paying live.
  5. ok i was looking for the same answers before my first gig 2 years ago

    1.Play the songs through your head but dont obsess over them.

    2.See if you can do sound check I found you have a way better feeling once you know how it's going to sound and feel looking out from the stage/etc.

    3.Never second guess your self ,and dont look at a member if they screw up because if you do that will be a signal for the crowd to think "what the heck is he looking at ...ohhh the guitar player must have screwed up" then you look like noobs

    4.If u screw up and go off beat just act like your doing a fill and also if you screw up and everyone does notice just keep on rockin man.

    5.The crowd will get in to it the more the band does so all you guys/girls should go nuts and own the stage also once u finish this first gig in about a month or two u will say it sucked because the next couple were even better.

    If you have anymore questions dont be afraid to ask
  6. +1 own it. best thing you could ever do.

    when I was a kid my bro was giving me a pep talk before a school concert I was petrified to do . . . something along the lines of 2 guys walking down the street - one guy slips on a banana peel and almost falls, turns around cursing causing a scene making everyone look at him. the next guy also slips on a peel and does a back flip and a somersault and passerby's cheer him

    then my bro grabbed me, finger pointing and said "point is, if you're gonna fvck up, fvck up gracefully" never forgot that. . .:eyebrow::D
  7. Dbassmon


    Oct 2, 2004
    Rutherford, NJ
    The only thing that teaches you to be able to gig is to gig. You will have an out-of-body experience and it may be unpleasant. Learning to control adrenaline and nerves takes practice.... you only get that from playing in front of a live audience.

  8. now that just made my day bro :bassist:
  9. 1dgbass


    Jul 24, 2009
    Staten Island
    i remember my first gig three years ago when I was 17.
    It wasn't that great for me, but for my other band members, they played perfectly.
    I just say to myself "the audience doesn't care if you make mistakes. Not the end of the world."

    I wish you a lifelong adventure of plesent gigging!!!

  10. if you go to open mics and note what songs they do,learn as many as you can and try to sit in on your strongest stuff....don't stay too and try to leave on a high.....next time they may ask you to come up
  11. dogofgod


    Dec 24, 2009
    my band hit three open mic nights before we started to play real gigs. it was a pain to use other people's equipment and the "sound guy" was really just a random "guy", but i absolutely loved standing there and playing with my friends, rocking a small beat up dive bar, while the audience is cheering for us to come back next week. it was the fuel that we needed and also gave us the confidence we needed. So when we played our first gig, the manager of the bar we were playing, was so impressed he immediately gave us more gigs and asked how long we had been touring. it made us all feel really good, to say the least. but the more mess ups you can get through on your first open mic nights, the better! most people tend to learn more from their failures than their successes.

    nothing will be better then when you play your first few gigs and you nail 'em. you will want to keep playing every night. playing live is better than any drug! :)
  12. butchblack

    butchblack Life is short. Do good. Find and do what you love.

    Jan 25, 2007
    Waltham Massachusetts
    Open mikes are a good way to learn how to play in front of people. It also teaches you to listen to what's going on and react to it. Your first gig with your first band will always be nerve wracking. Having played in front of people before will lessen the nervousness. Hey I still get a bit nervous the first time I gig with a band whether as a member or a fill in and I've been doing it for over 20 years. I keep doing it because it's fun and it fills a need inside of me.
  13. Matt Dead

    Matt Dead

    Jan 20, 2010
    Vancouver, WA
    I never have been nervous on stage. I don't know why. I think it is because in 5th grade I gave a wild extremely hyper speech running for president infront of a school of 500 kids haha.
  14. TheRatt


    Apr 24, 2010
    Pittsburgh, PA
    Playing a gig is the same as almost anything else in music: the more you do it, the better you get. Once you have a good number of shows under your belt, you'll know the routine. What to do if the crowd isn't liking it, how to deal with b*tchy sound guys, all that jazz.
  15. Stretch...for real, before you hit a stage do some toe touches, v/sit-reaches. side to sides.
  16. xxfaux_punkxx


    Mar 18, 2010
    Thanx for all the advice people. I'm really excited about getting on stage and playing. I've been on stage before but never with my bass. I doubt I'll be gigging with a band anytime soon but the more stories I hear the more I want to go to an open mic and jam out with some pistols.
  17. St Drogo

    St Drogo

    Oct 9, 2009
    +1 to what most people here said. If your first gig goes anything like mine did, you'll be as nervous as a chicken in a cockhouse, but all that goes away the moment you play your first note. Assuming you don't suck.

    Best remedy for stage fright: Good preparation. If you go up there being extraordinaryly nervous and you haven't actually put any effort into learning your parts or something like that, you might bomb like a b-2. Though overpracticing is killing too, on my first gig I would prefer to lean more to over- than underpracticed.

    Seriously, 12 times out of ten the first gig will go a lot better than you think. And the times after that your nervousness should be at normal pregig levels.

    Good luck muchacho! Make sure to post the pics here afterwards!
  18. alangoldstein


    Jul 23, 2007
    Charleston, SC
    Endorsments: Aguilar, Hartke, DR strings, Analysis Plus "Oval" Cables
    first gig u will have the liquid pooptts b4 the show. LMFAO

    but you will be fine. drink a shot or 2.

    or wine, beer, etc....

    my first gig had so many damn people to this day,19 years later ? i still dont get crowds like that at shows..... how crazy a middle school talent show could be ill never forget that.

    it was insane. mcmillan junior high school miami florida ( kendall area )

    we played 2 van halen songs.... u reallly got me and aint talkin bout love.

    like in 1990 i think. ha!
  19. somegeezer


    Oct 1, 2009
    I've done good and bad gigs on and off. As far as I know, my first ever gig was brilliant compared to some others I've had.
  20. interp

    interp Supporting Member

    Apr 14, 2005
    Garmisch, Germany
    Just relax and do it. There will be mistakes, but the key is not to attach excessive importance to them and LEARN from them.

    You learn nothing from performing flawlessly.

    I know a little about this as I played my first live gig 43 years ago and in the 2,000+ gigs over that time there have been plenty of opportunities to learn from my mistakes :).

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