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singer issues

Discussion in 'Band Management [BG]' started by DaDrew2112, Jun 28, 2012.


  1. DaDrew2112

    DaDrew2112

    Apr 7, 2011
    Rochester
    it's been far too long since i've posted on here. Anywho here's the deal: i have a singer who is pretty good. He remembers the lyrics all the time, decent pitch, can sing well enough to get the job done. but here's where things get funky: he feels the need to play guitar...
    I'm going to be honest, i'm not a phenomenal guitar player by any means. In fact i'd say i'm bad. But i practice everyday and am slowly building up real skills.
    Singer however....the singer literally can only play power chords. He does not have the ability or motor skills to hit one string at a time and cannot play barre chords or even the open chords that everyone and their 80 year old great grandmother knows.
    We are not gigging yet and this pisses me off. I get really sick of trying to work with his guitar playing because it's literally detrimental to most songs. He's had his guitar for the better of 9 months and has the skill of about...someone who has been playing for 2 or 3 weeks. But he insists he needs it, and will not put it down for any reason whatsoever. Is it worth talking to him about or should i deal with it until the possibility of gigs exists?
     
  2. tangentmusic

    tangentmusic A figment of our exaggeration

    Aug 17, 2007
    Reno/Tahoe
    Sounds like a guy who needs to hide behind something while he sings. Possibly a confidence issue.
    Some singers merely use a guitar as a prop. Gives them something to do besides acting out onstage.

    If you cant talk him out of it, try to record some practice/rehearsal sessions, even in a crude way just so he can hear what everyone else hears.
    If he hears how bad he really is, a couple things should occur:

    1: He'll give it up and just sing. Or
    2: He'll be determined to learn to play the thing.
     
  3. Warfender

    Warfender

    Oct 25, 2009
    Been there and we are no longer with that singer. I would just bring it out front and let him know that maybe in the future when he works hard at a few songs and has them dialed and if he doesn't then no go.

    I've learned to speak up or forever be unhappy. Just bring it out in a neutral way not bashing him.
     
  4. Leialoha

    Leialoha

    Jun 13, 2008
    San Francisco
    The time honored method of dealing with this is to not let him plug in...
     
  5. DaDrew2112

    DaDrew2112

    Apr 7, 2011
    Rochester
    :D
     
  6. DaDrew2112

    DaDrew2112

    Apr 7, 2011
    Rochester
    That's what I'm thinking. I'm not really an almighty guitar player though and i feel like I'm not on grounds to pass judgement, especially since that point will be brought up.
     
  7. yeh all of the above

    record a session right in front of this amp then play it back....if he cant recognise how bad it is then tell him he can play acoustic power chords or unplug his electric....if he still insists the band wont go anywhere so blow him away or leave
     
  8. placedesjardins

    placedesjardins

    May 7, 2012
    Does this band consist of just you and him? A drummer or other musician can validate that he is not good at guitar.
     
  9. winndaddy

    winndaddy

    Feb 9, 2011
    When our singer picks up his guitar I literally stop playing. Sure it hurts his feelings, but at this point I don't care. Other band members feel the same. Worse part, he will try and show our guitarists how to play a song. His versions are 99.9999% of the time ( usually learned from a 15year old on youtube and he is 39). He will then argue that his version is right until all of us call him on it ( Has no ear). Its a hinder and a headache to say the least. We would like to only have one guitarist but there is no way with the singer waiting in the wind.

    I feel for you...
     
  10. DaDrew2112

    DaDrew2112

    Apr 7, 2011
    Rochester
    you do realize how offended he would be, right?
     
  11. mellowinman

    mellowinman Free Man

    Oct 19, 2011
    Minneapolis
    My band has agreed I will not plug an electric guitar into an amp at any time.

    I'm cool with that.

    Maybe he could learn to strum an acoustic, play some rhythm instruments, or play some keyboards?

    Maybe he could get out front "naked," and learn to be a real front man?

    These are all things that could do a lot for his career, and future as a musician.

    As for the guitar? He better put in some practice time.

    I think you guys should be BRUTAL with him, while reminding him you really do like him as a vocalist.

    Either he accepts it, or he doesn't.
     
  12. wonderjosh

    wonderjosh

    Nov 19, 2009
    Fort Worth, TX
    Meh.. just tell him he's not ready to play guitar. Be nice, but be honest.
     
  13. edpal

    edpal Banned

    Oct 3, 2007
    Record a practice and then ask him if he thinks he is ready. BUt understand many people can't take being put on spot like that, so you might loose the singer. I went through this a while ago - I was doing most of the singing, but a REALLY good singer showed up, who also played a pretty good lead or rythmn guitar(I'm bass). I had to step aside/down - but only from lead vocals. IT could have been brutal, but I took it like a man and addressed the issue rther then let it fester, with the guy wondering if I had a knife waiting for him, "hey, I kept us going but now we have been blessed with a much better singer. I will commit myself to being the best bassplayer and backup singer I can be." And so it was, and so we rocked on!
     
  14. pmchenry

    pmchenry

    May 6, 2012
    SE PA
    It's funny you mention this. When I first started as a vocalist(before I ever played bass), our act included me playing air guitar on an old worthless electric I picked up at a yard sale. It didn't even have strings on it.

    It just gave me something to do(ie: kept me the center of attention) when I didn't have lines to sing. The reason I eventually picked up a bass was because I liked it so much I didn't want to go back to just me, a stage, and a microphone.
     

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