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Discussion in 'Band Management [BG]' started by Jeb, Oct 19, 2004.

  1. Jeb


    Jul 22, 2001
    If you can do it, do you do it right away? If you can't do it, do something else by the same artist that you can do?

    Sometimes you just can't do it, like in a country venue and someone requests "Pantera," I've honestly no clue as to any of their songs, I just know it doesn't fit the venue.

    The thing that makes me cringe is when someone makes a request for a song that we may have already played and then we do it again. Is that acceptable?
  2. ONYX


    Apr 14, 2000
    As a rule, we don't usually take requests for cover tunes. Our set lists are about 70 percent originals and our goal is to make it 100 percent. It's a decision that has been made by every member of the band, past and present. BUT, every so often, someone will request a tune that make us look at each other and say " What the heck, why not? ". Sometimes it turns out to be something that none of us has ever played before. Those are usually moments to remember!
  3. Folmeister

    Folmeister Knowledge is Good - Emile Faber Supporting Member

    May 7, 2003
    Tomball, Texas
    In my cover bands, if it is requested and we know it, we do it right away. We are there for the patrons' entertainment.
  4. alembic76407


    Apr 29, 2004
    We tell the crowd just send up request on the back of a $20 bill and we will move them to the top of the list, we get 1 out of a hundred everynow and then, when it comes to begging for money on stage, WERE MUSICAL PROSTITUTES. we have been togather for 23 years with the same members and have well over 1000 songs
  5. IvanMike

    IvanMike Player Characters fear me... Supporting Member

    Nov 10, 2002
    Middletown CT, USA
    absolutley. If you think otherwise, you're kidding yourself.
  6. bmc


    Nov 15, 2003
    Same here. Often it's all the stuff we grew up listening to that inspired us to become musicians, right? Lyrics...well if someone knows them or can get us through 2 verses, good enough. If it makes them happy and they could see you tried hard to please them, it goes a long way.
  7. Ryan L.

    Ryan L. Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Aug 7, 2000
    West Fargo, ND

    Same here. It's all about keeping the crowd happy and on the dance floor.
  8. With the cover band, if it's early on in the night and we know the tune, we'll do it right away or close to.

    If it's towards the end of the night even if we don't know it we'll usually take a stab at it because whoever requested it was probably horribly drunk and won't know the difference.

    With the original band, we usually don't take requests, but have played a request cover tune occasionally at the end of a set if we have time left.
  9. Passinwind

    Passinwind I Know Nothing Supporting Member Commercial User

    Dec 3, 2003
    Columbia River Gorge, WA.
    Owner/Designer &Toaster Tech Passinwind Electronics
    In the jazz group, if it's in our book, we'll play it right way, possibly even if we haven't all learned it yet. depends on how tough the chart is. We wouldn't play it twice in a night, unless the crowd's turned over substantially.

    In my duo, a request would by default mean one of my originals. I'll do it again, but in some completely different style, typically. Last week I was playing a one-off dinner blues gig with someone, and got a request for my one and only hair metal song. I did a jazz version, worked fine. :cool:

    When I was in cover bands, we'd try to fit requests into the flow of the set, but get it done reasonably quickly.
  10. kansas666


    Sep 20, 2004
    ditto. But we often introduce a song as a request even if it isn't. It makes people think we care. :oops:
  11. RicPlaya


    Apr 22, 2003
    Whitmoretucky MI
    We just decided to learn Freebird to silence the drunk trolls.
  12. In my current cover band we are rarely able to do requests. The guitarist and keyboardist are both anal and it's very hard to get them to do a song in front of people unless they absolutely know it. We had someone request "Knockin on Heaven's Door" the other day and they wouldn't do it.

    But my personal opinion is to try the request if at least one member of the band (not counting the drummer) knows it . I think people will respect you more. However, if the song is something complex like Bohemian Rhapsody, then don't even try it.

    At one gig several years ago, we finished our 4 sets and were breaking down. The really drunk guy walked up to the stage and the follow conversation ensued:

    Drunk: "do you do any Jimmy Buffet?"
    Drummer: "yeah, we do all his songs".
    Drunk: "All right man! Can you play margaritaville?"
    Drummer: "We're taking a break right now. But, we'll play that one and a whole bunch more in about 30 minutes. "
    Drunk: "All right man!"

    The drunk sat down in chair in front of the stage and waited. We packed our gear and left, he was still sitting there waiting.
  13. Joe P

    Joe P

    Jul 15, 2004
    Milwaukee, WI
    Yikes! I can't even imagine.

  14. Joe P

    Joe P

    Jul 15, 2004
    Milwaukee, WI
    C'mon - now you have to tell us what song it was!

  15. buzzbass

    buzzbass Shoo Shoo Retarded Flu !

    Apr 23, 2003
    "Sometimes you just can't do it, like in a country venue and someone requests "Pantera," I've honestly no clue as to any of their songs, I just know it doesn't fit the venue."

    Sure it does, Just play "Cowboys from Hell" and bust into "walk" for a double shot. Couldn't you just imagine the look on those country yokels faces when you hit that openeing riff from "Cowboys", LOL ! Hope they've got chicken wire. :smug:
  16. CJK84


    Jan 22, 2004
    Maria Stein, OH
    I play in a cover band.

    If someone requests a tune that we know at least reasonably well, we'll usually play it within the next 5 or 6 songs.

    I don't think it's critical to play it immediately - just fairly soon.

    One word of caution. Please read on!

    I have played in a band for the past 8 years with some great people - but as musicians they have somewhat limited ability (but they're steadily improving!). By comparison, I'm certainly no Jaco or Elvis, but I've learned, in detail, the bass lines and lead vocals to numerous popular songs.

    Sometimes when we get a request I'll get excited and immediately take off playing and singing. Realizing that the other members have no clue what to play or how to fake it(they're usually simply staring at me), I'll often quit after about 30 seconds.

    It has already happened that I/we have inadvertently ticked off patrons because of this. They ask us, "Why did you quit playing the song we requested? You knew it so why did you quit?"

    Explaining doesn't always help.

    So be wary about this.
  17. alembic76407


    Apr 29, 2004

    if you must do Free Bird, check out Dread Zepplin's Free Bird it's the best!!!
  18. cosmodrome

    cosmodrome Registered User

    Apr 30, 2004
    ****town, Netherlands
    we handle that like any dj at any club would. 'yeah, sure. we can play that tune. later on!'

    and if they still remember later on I don't know what to do. never happened before.
  19. I think it also helps to be able to tell whether the request is serious, facetious, or just some ******* heckling you. Most of the time, anyone yelling "Freebird" or "Play some Skynyrd" has to be joking.

    One night when I was deejaying several years ago some yahoo's sent up a written request for an Elvis Presley song. I couldn't fulfull that request, so a note gets sent back up to me accusing me of being a communist. (What?) That pissed me off a little, so I took my pen and drew a swastika across it and sent the note back. The note was returned with a request to "see me outside after the show". I responded back with "I already have a date." That shut him up.
  20. Petebass


    Dec 22, 2002
    QLD Australia
    Agreed. And if we don't know it, but think we may be able to have a decent guess at it, we will. The crowd often appreciates the effort and will overlook the looseness if it's percieved you're being good guys and trying to please.

    However, we draw the live with "agressive requesters". If you're not polite about it, you don't get your song played. End of story. If you insist on making a request mid song while I'm busy trying to remember bass lines, chord changes, arrangements and harmony lines all at once, you can also forget it. Oh and if we don't know it, requesting the song with ever increasing volume isn't going to magically make the lyrics appear in the singers mouth, or make the notes magically appear at our fingertips.... and you will be told so. As a general rule we "match" their rudeness level when putting rude people in their place. Always remember, you have a mic, they don't ;)