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Stick With The Band Or Stick To My Principles?

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous [BG]' started by Kmonk, Jun 8, 2014.

  1. Kmonk


    Oct 18, 2012
    South Shore, Massachusetts
    Endorsing Artist: Fender, Spector, Ampeg, Curt Mangan, Nordstrand Pickups, Korg , Conquest Sound
    A few years ago, a friend and I started a band. Things have gone well until we recently hired a new drummer. He is a decent player but there are several problems that I, both guitarists and the lead singer have . First, is that he is faking a disability and collecting SSI. He does side work "under the table" and jokes about how he doesn't pay taxes, yet he is driving a $50,000 truck. Our lead singer has a disabled daughter and is from New York. He had relatives who were first responders to the attack so all of this really bothers him. I have also played benefits for the families who lost loved ones during the attacks, during which I met many of them and saw their pain first hand. The drummer also believes that the terrorist attacks of 9/11 were staged by the U.S. government. He said a plane never hit the Pentagon and the people who were on that plane are being held in a secret location. Today, he said the CIA executed John Lennon because he was too popular. He claims Mark David Chapman was brain washed into carrying out the government's orders. He said Chapman was a "Manchurian Candidate". (If you don't know what it means, look it up). He also said Manchurian Candidate is the name of his new band. (That is not our name.)

    I am very uncomfortable being around this guy and so are several other band members. Problem is that we have gigs lined up the other person who runs the band with me doesn't want to make a changed solely on the drummer's political views. I disagree since the drummer posts these rants on his Facebook page and I feel it reflects badly on the band. Personally, I don't care what his views are but I don't want to hear about them at rehearsal. I'm also concerned about what he might say to people at gigs. I want to replace the drummer and am considering leaving the band if he stays. Curious what the TB community thinks. Thank you.
    Last edited: Jun 8, 2014
  2. Sounds like you have judged this person to be a dishonest low life who is basically crazy.
    It also sounds like you are not comfortable interacting with people who you decide are not as good as you.
    In that case you should end the relationship and seek out people who are up to your standards and interact with them until you find something wrong with them too.
    Nev375 and SanDiegoHarry like this.
  3. Ewo

    Ewo a/k/a Steve Cooper Supporting Member

    Apr 2, 2008
    Huntington WV
    Actually, it doesn't sound so much like you're uncomfortable with guy because of politics. More like the guy appears to be a head case, in general.

    I could see that interfering with band business, for sure.
    totallyfrozen likes this.
  4. bolophonic


    Dec 10, 2009
    Durham, NC
    The dude sounds like an ass, but I was present for the attack at the Pentagon on 9/11 and I am certain that a jetliner did not hit that building.

    Still, faking a disability means that your taxes are paying for him to do his thing, so I wouldn't take that too lightly.
  5. Winfred


    Oct 21, 2011
    You can try talking to him, but people who believe the sort of things your drummer believes, are not usually swayed by logic and facts. If they were, they wouldn't believe the crazy stuff in the first place.

    His personal beliefs are irrelevant, until they start negatively affecting the band. The facebook posts are troublesome. I've known some guys like that.

    It sounds like you need a new drummer, but you need to play the gigs first.

    I would try having a very uncomfortable, and probably pointless talk, with him. If it doesn't change him, then you've got a reason to can him.

    If the rest of the band wants the drummer gone, then can him after the gigs.

    Remember, it's not "show friends", it's "show business".
  6. I didn't realize this was an ethical dilemma.
    I really don't see any legit reason to accept, condone, or support his behavior or people like him. I chose to not associate with guys like that, and you know what? I don't miss 'em. My life trucks along just fine without people like that and it hasn't held back my musical adventures, my career, my ability to make money, my relationships, my health, nothing! You can do without guys like that easily. It shouldn't even be a question.

    All the ethical issues aside...and I'm being very serious now...it sounds like he may have a mental illness. Mentally ill people are unpredictable to say the least there are any number of problems that could come up: from him being a no-call/no-show to him snapping and getting violent with someone at a gig one day.

    P.S. If he thinks it's funny to steal from the gov't, why wouldn't he think it's funny to steal from you or the rest of the band one day?
    Last edited: Jun 10, 2014
    huckleberry1 and Aqualung60 like this.
  7. Your gut is telling you what to do. Ignore it at your own risk.
  8. godofthunder59

    godofthunder59 God of Thunder and Rock and Roll Supporting Member

    Feb 19, 2006
    Rochester NY USA
    Endorsing Cataldo Basses, Whirlwind products, Thunderbucker pickups
    Run fast and far away from this guy. Trouble is following.
  9. buldog5151bass

    buldog5151bass Kibble, milkbones, and P Basses. And redheads.

    Oct 22, 2003
    You have gigs to which you are committed, play them.

    The band needs to sit down and decide whether or not to play with him. Once they decide (can bl overrule everyone else?), if they vote to keep him, follow your gut.
  10. M0ses


    Sep 11, 2009
    Los Angeles
    Absolutely could not co-exist in a band with that person. It'd be him or me.
    tangentmusic likes this.
  11. No one likes a thief. (Except maybe another thief)
    I don't blame you for not wanting to hang with him. I would start looking for another drummer.
  12. TheEmptyCell

    TheEmptyCell Bearded Dingwall Enthusiast Supporting Member

    Jul 16, 2005
    Los Angeles, CA
    Stick to your principles, absolutely.

    It takes me a while to make friends, because I don't take s*** and I'm me 100% of the time. Starting a band takes longer, cuz I'm not gonna hang out with drug-addled losers or drunken frat guys. But when I find people I like and agree with, life is easier.
  13. Kmonk


    Oct 18, 2012
    South Shore, Massachusetts
    Endorsing Artist: Fender, Spector, Ampeg, Curt Mangan, Nordstrand Pickups, Korg , Conquest Sound
    I haven't judge this guy to be a thief. He has admitted to being a thief by telling us that he is faking disability so he can collect SSI and doesn't have to work. I never judge whether anyone is as good as me or not. I don't feel that I am better or worse than anyone else. I spoke to someone that he played with in a previous band and they said he seemed perfectly normal and he never expressed any of the views I mentioned. I have a BA in Psychology and I'm starting to wonder if he has a Psychological problem.
    cv115505 likes this.
  14. Kmonk


    Oct 18, 2012
    South Shore, Massachusetts
    Endorsing Artist: Fender, Spector, Ampeg, Curt Mangan, Nordstrand Pickups, Korg , Conquest Sound
    One of the guitarists and I are the band leaders. He usually handles bookings and I handle personnel decisions. In this case, he doesn't want to replace the guy even though he doesn't like him either. He is more concerned with getting through the gigs. My fear is that if we don't replace him there will be a major blow up which could end the band. The drummer has only been with us for 8 weeks so I don't see any reason to keep him.
  15. lfmn16

    lfmn16 Supporting Member

    Sep 21, 2011
    charles town, wv
    You have three completely separate issues here. Issue one is his collecting disability under false pretenses. Issue two is his not paying taxes. Issue three is his political views.

    Only you can decide what is right for you. I was in a motorcycle accident and on disability for a year so I would never work with a scumbag that faked it. I work hard and am glad to pay my share of taxes, so a scumbag that doesn't pay his share is a non starter for me. I have frequently played with people with very different political views, so I would tell him that politics is off limits during rehearsals, but if it doesn't affect the band, and I don't have to hear it I don't care what other people think.
  16. lfmn16

    lfmn16 Supporting Member

    Sep 21, 2011
    charles town, wv
    I saw this after my post. In this case I would tell him to shut his pie hole about politics during rehearsals, finish the gigs and fire him when the gigs are over.
    Aqualung60 and Kmonk like this.
  17. interp

    interp Supporting Member

    Apr 14, 2005
    Garmisch, Germany
    You always have the right to decide who you wish to associate with. If you do not wish to associate with this guy and the band is unwilling to part company with him, then you should part company with the band.

    If it bothers you that much. That's a decision only you can make.
    Joedog likes this.
  18. gregvds


    May 17, 2014
    I would play the gigs, for this is already decided and appointed (not doing them would be unprofessional), then stick to my principles. As some other members of the group think like you, maybe it's not you who should leave, but some of you, or just the drummer. This should be discussed just after the last appointed gig, and nothing should be planned further before the discussion has been held.
  19. better option: kick him out of the band
    Aqualung60 and Kmonk like this.
  20. Ric5

    Ric5 Supporting Member

    Jan 29, 2008
    Turn the lazy cheater into SSI and the IRS and let them lock his cheating ass up in jail.
    Joedog, fdorn, Aqualung60 and 5 others like this.

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