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so i walked away from my band yesterday...

Discussion in 'Band Management [BG]' started by joebar, Apr 13, 2010.

  1. joebar


    Jan 10, 2010
    after much reflection and thought (and well taken advice from TBers,) i pulled the trigger and quit my band which i was instrumental in co -forming.
    the singer/songwriter that i co-formed the band with is a raging alcoholic (i came to that conclusion during the three months we were together.)
    i decided that even though the music is good, i cannot associate professionally or personally with somebody with the disease. i have a long first hand experience with how that addiction destroys lives.
    i feel a huge weight has been lifted off of me and feel relieved that they will go on without me.
    my issues were that she had a lot of memory loss, was always injuring herself, hardly ever worked, was a master manipulator and on and on...
    she always had a magnum of wine in hand all the time.
    she was very co - dependant on me and exhausted me constantly while the other members didn't get bothered half as much.
    i decided that i wasn't going to embarass her in front of her one supporter (guitarist). he will have to find out the hard way i suppose. i chose to take a high road because it really doesn't matter what i say about it; drunks don't look at it or deny it anyhow.
    i cited irreconcilable differences as my reason for leaving.
    i had to bite my tongue many times last night as their apparent anger was being directed towards me.

    i had to get out before the recording started- i wasn't going to invest money when i couldn't trust everyone in the band. she is chronically broke and near destitute as i am finding out.
    i think i did the right thing.
  2. paganjack


    Dec 25, 2007
    Los Angeles, CA
    If you are happy about the choice, then you did the right thing. Well played on the tongue-biting too, keeping things as professional as possible is best.
  3. joebar


    Jan 10, 2010
    it was tough, but there was no need to scorn a woman no matter how much to deserved it lol.
    it didn't go without a hitch, but i dealt with it far better than i woulda thought...
  4. I think you did the right thing. It's true, save for a relative handful of recovering alcoholics who really make an effort to stop, most are in denial or just keep at it, it's their life and you don't need to be apart of it.
  5. DrSmaggs


    Oct 15, 2003
    Endorsing Artist:
    You made a good choice. It's not worth the effort if you feel nervous or threatened in any way the whole time.

    I'm picky about who I jam with and if there is too much repetitive drama, I start looking elsewhere.

    Being in a band is work, but it should also be fun.
  6. waynobass


    Feb 27, 2008
    I don't know, seems par for the course for singers. :smug: If the drummer is good I'd probably stick it out and just ignore her.
  7. Jedisan


    Feb 25, 2009
    East Bay, CA
    You did the absolutely right thing. It seems the situation was taking such a toll on you, that it was not really worth the effort. You certainly did maintain your esteem, as bashing anybody never does anygood.
  8. MEKer

    MEKer Supporting member

    May 30, 2006
    Never worth it to deal with the drama of booze or drugs. Just plain stupid. You did 100% the right thing and don't look back. Don't even look in to see how they are doing.
  9. Well done Joebar-

    My drummer and I had to pull an intervention on the rest of our Pop quintet. We wrote out our feelings and then met to discuss. It went pretty badly. They turned the situation around onto us. The resented the fact that we emailed our letter, then met the next night.

    Too bad, the closer we got to our goal, the more drinking and smoking occurred. Eventually the behaviour deteriorated to irresponsible crap at rehearsal and gigs.

    You were right to depart, otherwise you make it your problem.
  10. Stumbo

    Stumbo Wherever you go, there you are. Supporting Member Commercial User

    Feb 11, 2008
    Song Surgeon slow downer. https://tinyurl.com/y5dcuqjg
    An intervention is when you personally meet/confront someone who has a serious problem.

    Emailing them your "feelings" is the exact opposite of what you should have done because if they have the problems you say they have, how else would you expect them to act?

    From: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Intervention_(counseling)

    Prior preparation

    Prior to the intervention itself, the family meets with a counselor (or interventionist). Families prepare letters in which they describe their experiences associated with the addict's behavior, to convey to the person the impact his or her addiction has had on others. Also during the intervention rehearsal meeting, a group member is strongly urged to create a list of activities (by the addict) that they will no longer tolerate, finance, or participate in if the addict doesn't agree to check into a rehabilitation center for treatment. These consequences may be as simple as no longer loaning money to the addict, but can be far more serious, such as losing custody of a child.

    Family and friends read their letters to the addict, who then must decide whether to check into the prescribed rehabilitation center or deal with the promised losses.
  11. Stumbo, you are right that we could have handled it more "professionally" as interventionists. We are musicians though, so we did what we felt we had to do.
    This was a year ago, and the person who was most misbehaving is a friend again, and seems sober. The band was reconstituted and is functioning anew. only the leader remains though.
  12. MusserMusic


    Mar 28, 2010
    San Diego, CA
    Tough one for sure! You did the right thing IMO. I can handle the every once in a while band mate overdoing it but if it's a problem then it's a problem. It is totally UNPROFFESSIONAL and UNACCEPTABLE in a working band when you're under contract. When I'm just jammin with friends who over drink or drug then I don't have fun as a musician but then again I don't drink or drug anymore so my tolerance is pretty low for sloppy playing. I have many musician friends who have few to loosen up, I'm fine with that and I have many musician friends who don't. There's nothing wrong with either camp your in but we all have our levels of acceptability and tolerance.
    For me, it all comes down to what's more important - the party or the music!
    I hope she get's it...sad fact is some never do. Me, I'm grateful to be sucking air let alone playing my bass for fun or money!
  13. Munjibunga

    Munjibunga Retired Member

    May 6, 2000
    San Diego (when not at Groom Lake)
    Independent Contractor to Bass San Diego
    You did well in a tough situation. Good move.
  14. Bongolation


    Nov 9, 2001
    No Bogus Endorsements
    If there are serious substance-abuse problems in a band, it's never wrong to leave, if only for your own safety. There has to be a LOT of money involved to sufficiently insulate you from the problems even one member can cause for you if he or she is a garbagehead of some sort.

    I'm speaking here from personal -- very scary -- experience.
  15. MetroBass


    Mar 26, 2008
    South of LA
    Hatred obscures all distinctions.
    Trust me from experience - you did the right thing. It only gets worst as the disease consumes the addict. Any substance abuse is like a vortex to hell that sucks everything in its path down with it. Stand strong!
  16. duff beer

    duff beer

    Dec 2, 2007
    Is there any reason why you didn't approach the rest of the band and see what they thought about firing her?

    That being said....I was once in a band with a real jerk, so I told them that it was him or me. They didn't have as much of a problem with him as I did, so it was me that quit. :D
  17. Mo'Phat

    Mo'Phat Supporting Member

    Oct 1, 2003
    San Diego, CA, USA
    I would have sacked the singer.

    It was your band, too...and chances are you were more instrumental in gathering the other players than she was.

    What you do now is: find another (stable) singer, learn a few tunes...while the rest of your old band scrambles for another bassist. They will quickly realize that the singer is a loser and will probably seek you out. There you'll be, with a new singer and new songs. A perfect situation for your old bandmates to slide into...without the loser.
  18. Joebar, that singer is FUBAR. You did the right thing.
  19. joebar


    Jan 10, 2010
    well, first of all, the drummer is my brother and we talked about it in great detail before i had that fateful meeting. he was on the same page as me, but when it came time to say our peace, he didn't say a word.
    i left with my decision made and he was left with her.

    although i was instrumental in choosing the members personally, the guitar player was quite adamant about his commitment towards recording HER songs; i came to the conclusion that that was his main motivation for being involved in the project. he has a cover band on the side that he gets his jollies out on; this one was because of the quality of the original songs.
    my experience with drunks is not good; i have learned some very hard lessons along the way and you really do just have to walk away; you ain't gonna change anything and if you do confront, they will get defensive and angry- no point.

    but she has a funny way of making everything about her...
  20. Krispy


    May 21, 2007
    NJ USA
    That's just one part of chronic alcoholism.

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