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Rhythm guitar player quits....is the band done?

Discussion in 'Band Management [BG]' started by Runnerman, Nov 28, 2012.

  1. Runnerman

    Runnerman Registered Bass Player Supporting Member

    Mar 14, 2011
    Well last night at the end of practice our rhythm guitar (also sings backup and lead on a few songs) announced he was quitting the band. Shocker for me...seriously. Yes, the guy was probably the least dedicated of the 4 of us and has a young family so maybe I should have seen it coming. He was also the least talented musician in the band. The other guys were not as surprised. He had no issues with the band, just felt it was time to take a break. The thing is, the rest of us are over 40 and on the other side of the young family thing....we took our time out and are now back in with more dedication than ever.

    So now the talk turns to a replacement and what we need. We are a mainly original band, we have one album out but mix in some covers in our live show. So anyone coming in would have to learn our original material. Have to confess I have never been in this situation before and don't know what to expect. The other guys say it is a blessing in diguise but I can't help wondering if the band can find the right person to keep going. The lead guitarist is already talking about Craigslist ads and I'm still trying to get over this guy leaving. Do I have the wrong attitude?

    We have one more show with the guy on the Dec 8 and 3 more practices. Then what? I don't know.
  2. derrico1

    derrico1 Supporting Member

    Apr 12, 2005
    Charlottesville, VA
    If your remaining guitarist is good, I wouldn't sweat this.

    Look at the bright side: now there's more room for bass and less constraint on how inventive you can be with each song's pulse and harmonization. I'd much rather play in a trio than be hemmed in by a weak rhythm guitarist.
  3. bassbully

    bassbully Endorsed by The PHALEX CORN BASS..mmm...corn!

    Sep 7, 2006
    Blimp City USA
    It's no big deal trust me. I'm in a band like your's (originals) and we also play a few covers. We have two albums to date and lost our drummer last summer a 6 year founding member and kept it going.
    We have a new drummer after going thru a couple so its a little work.
    If you other guitarist can carry you ask around other musicians for guitarists interested or place and ad and let the games begin :smug:

    Really its not so bad, losing a drummer made it hard for us but we never freaked out.
    You only have the one gig and that is good, so work on a replacement now. As for the replacement have your songs charted out for them and the song recording to help make the learning curve a short one. Good luck!
  5. I wouldn't worry too much. If he was the least talented member of the band, hopefully you can find a replacement with much more talent. There's millions of guitarists out there, so I would try and find one who is not only a good player, but also has an interest in writing. It could end being a blessing in disguise.
  6. I would also push for one less guitarist, ;). At the very least, suggest trying it out. Everyone might like it!
  7. sobie18


    May 5, 2002
    Shaw AFB, SC
    I'd continue without a rhythm guitarist. Fill the void with bass and move on. You have your sonic spectrum back...
  8. Duckwater


    May 10, 2010
    USA, Washington
    Unless he was an amazing rhythm player, you guys can fill in the gaps.
  9. I've mainly played in bands without a rhythm guitar. It seriously allows me to be more creative on the bass. Without a rhythm guitar you are in a position do more fills and runs, as well as increased experimentation with effects or even a bass synth like the Roland GR-55. Give it a shot.
  10. bassbully

    bassbully Endorsed by The PHALEX CORN BASS..mmm...corn!

    Sep 7, 2006
    Blimp City USA
    My band that I was refering to has a keys/guitarist that plays maybe half or less of our shows a year. It's great when he there since he is a good guy and great player but when he is not we never miss and beat and his playing is not really missed all that much.

    If you can continue without a rhythm player do it. If not get looking. The biggest issue finding a new guitarist will be the original band concept but its not a huge deal.
  11. Rock on without him! As long as you've got a solid bass player you don't need a rhythm guitar. I play in a 4 piece band - one guitar, one lead singer, one drummer, one bass. We've never needed a rhythm guitar.
  12. Runnerman

    Runnerman Registered Bass Player Supporting Member

    Mar 14, 2011
    Thanks for the replies folks.

    I'm surprised everybody is so into the 3 piece idea. To be honest, when this dude was not at practice the 3 of us were and are super tight. When he's there things get sloppy and we are constantly fighting to get it to sound good so maybe you are all onto something.
  13. ThudThudThud


    Jun 4, 2010

    There's the answer.
  14. bassbully

    bassbully Endorsed by The PHALEX CORN BASS..mmm...corn!

    Sep 7, 2006
    Blimp City USA
    Yup ..you have no problems brother...rock on!
  15. I prefer to have two guitarists myself, or a guitar and keyboards. Power trios (or trios with a singer) often sound bland to me, unless all of you have serious talent (especially your guitarist). Just my opinion though.
  16. Runnerman

    Runnerman Registered Bass Player Supporting Member

    Mar 14, 2011
    The guitarist does have serious talent but you are right to a certain extent. Our style is classic rock and he takes a lot of solos in the originals. I've always thought it calls for a second guitar. But this has me thinking more as a challenge to see what I can do to fill this space better than I'm doing now. The other challenge is background vox. I've enjoyed the break of not singing in this band but I'm going to have to step up there too. So maybe overall this thing will force me to become a better musician.
  17. "...this has me thinking to see what I can do to fill this space better."

    Amen Brother. Congratulations - you'll now get to play both bass and rhythm guitar on your bass. It works for me. I've played in 2 and 3 guitar bands and don't miss it. It allows me to play bass and or rhythm guitar parts where the song needs it most. Adds to the level of creativity for the bass player.
  18. wideload


    Apr 15, 2004
    Great! Now you've got room for that accordion player you always wanted! :) Seriously, continue 3 piece, if a competent rhythm player falls in your lap (or keys or whatever), then consider adding a piece. Of course, after gigging as a trio, you may not want to give up the extra split at the end of the night!
  19. jmattbassplaya

    jmattbassplaya Supporting Member

    Jan 13, 2008
    Tampa, FL.
    Yep. When my band lost our second guitarist (not a strictly rhythm player as both guitarists split duties depending on the song) we actually ended up becoming a better band. It took a month to get things flowing again, but it didn't stop us. Push through and you guys will come out ahead :)
  20. IMO, you can always work it as a trio while looking for the right guy. Just keep going.