Discussion in 'Band Management [BG]' started by agreatheight, Jul 8, 2013.

  1. Everyone seems to know the major strokes of professionalism, but it seems that many don't know its finer points. So let's compose a list! I'll start.

    NO WHINING. No matter what the circumstance, whining is unprofessional. Not a whimper, no matter what. Half the time bad circumstances are a function of poor gig research, imo. The other half - you can't see them coming so no use making more of it than is necessary. As for the gig? Suck it up buttercup. Do the best you can. If you don't like the gig - smile, and then don't do it again.
  2. jaywa


    May 5, 2008
    Iowa City, IA
    No whining?

    Then they might as well shut down TalkBass right now.

  3. Touche! Ok, no whining at the gig!
  4. jaywa


    May 5, 2008
    Iowa City, IA
    Point taken. In all seriousness... you bring up an excellent point and something I still really have to watch myself on. A lot of times as a sideman (which is basically my role in my current band) you have no idea who may be listening to anything you say while at the gig. That person who overhears you b*tching about the small stage (or no stage) or the lack of a proper "green room" or the labor intensive load-in or the crappy house P.A. or the small / disinterested crowd or whatever could be the event organizer or club owner and you would never even know it but it could make things a lot tougher on your BL and possibly even compromise your chance to get repeat business or a good referral.
  5. socialleper

    socialleper Bringer of doom and top shelf beer Supporting Member

    May 31, 2009
    Canyon Country, CA
    Highly organized, mature, professional people rarely become musicians because of the high level of competition and lack of reliable income. Plus musicians tend to be artistic types, which 90% of the time means flakey.
    My experience has lead me to the conclusion that everything in the music industry from the musicians, to the clubs, to promoters, to fans, or gear manufactures are unreliable and chaotic. I just have to accept that otherwise I'll go crazy. I love playing and I love writing; but I hate almost everything else about the music biz.
  6. Ukiah Bass

    Ukiah Bass Supporting Member

    May 10, 2006
    Knows the songs cold; doesn't overplay; ensures the instrument, playing technique, EQ and volume are appropriate for the band mix; is a team player with the sound person; stays sober and focused to make the gig a success.
  7. marko138


    May 24, 2013
    Perry County PA
    Well said, especially the last sentence.
  8. jaywa


    May 5, 2008
    Iowa City, IA
    This is one of the most astute observations I've seen here in a long time. The music biz (especially on the live performance side) seems to attract "crisis junkies" like a moth towards flame. As someone who likes everything planned well in advance and competently organized on site, gigs can be a real psychological challenge for me sometimes.

    That being said... my day job is in a corporate marketing department and the environment there isn't that much different.
  9. 3star2nr


    Jun 2, 2013
    Do not sleep with the fans or people who work at the venues. It gets weird and always ends with you losing
  10. Exactly.
  11. cnltb


    May 28, 2005
    The Pro:
    Knows the music,
    shows up on time
    uses reliable equipment
    gets along with people
    is helpful and sees the positive in most situations
    Understands his role in any musical context and is willing to adapt ,if necessary and mostly able to do that.
    Is no flake.
    gets paid.

  12. JohnMCA72


    Feb 4, 2009
    Well, the real pros don't have time to post on TalkBass (sez the guy posting on TalkBass)!
  13. Joedog


    Jan 28, 2010
    Pensacola FL
    Knows how to use a volume knob (news flash: they can be turned down!),
  14. jaywa


    May 5, 2008
    Iowa City, IA
    Also... understands that sometimes you add more to the song by NOT playing every single bar from beginning to end. Laying out is not always a bad thing.
  15. socialleper

    socialleper Bringer of doom and top shelf beer Supporting Member

    May 31, 2009
    Canyon Country, CA
    I wish gigs ran in a organized, predictable way. You'd think that with so much money at stake there would be more sanity to the whole thing. I've played shows where the promoter never bothered to send us tickets. I played a "Festival" last month that was more like a hostile take over of a hotel than a concert. No one was running the thing, the bands couldn't figure out where they were playing or what time, and the guys running the PA systems couldn't have cared less about what was happening. The only organized thing about it was when the promoter wanted to get the ticket money; THAT they had dialed in.
  16. Phalex

    Phalex Semper Gumby Supporting Member

    Oct 3, 2006
    G.R. MI
    Don't constantly tell people about your work ethic and claim to conduct yourself in a professional manner, and then consistently be a lazy unprofessional dick.
  17. ChopperDave

    ChopperDave Hai-ohhhhhhh!

    Nov 14, 2012
    Boston, MA
    Not to mention thin-skinned and self-absorbed.

    And that, my friend, is why we play bass ... or is playing bass how we got to feel this way ... Chicken/egg, I guess.
  18. jmattbassplaya

    jmattbassplaya Supporting Member

    Jan 13, 2008
    These are the things I find to be the biggest differentiators:

    - Comes in knowing all the material
    - Comes in on time, all the time (or will at least call ahead if they may be late)
    - Has reliable gear that it adequate for the gig on hand
    - Has spares or backup for all their gear in case something happens
    - Knows how to use their gear properly
    - Knows their role in the band and how to collaborate
    - Has reliable transport and can transport themselves and all their gear
    - Brings positive vibes into the group (easy to get along with, easy to work with, no attitude)
    - Brings knowledge and experience into the group
    - Bring organization and order into a group
    - Is reliable

    I'm sure there are more, but those come to mind immediately.
  19. Bert Slide

    Bert Slide

    May 16, 2012
    Louisville KY

    So true and you must embrace the freakshow and roll with the punches. It's no place for the thinskinned. There are no real givens or formula methods for succes or happiness. Ya gotta ride the snake!
  20. socialleper

    socialleper Bringer of doom and top shelf beer Supporting Member

    May 31, 2009
    Canyon Country, CA
    I do sometimes wonder if bass players aren't the more practical people of the music world. We picked an instrument that isn't as glorified as the guitar or signing, is far easier to get around than the drums, but is still very necessary. No one else wanted to do it so we volunteered. Perhaps our instrument choice demonstrates a different mind set.