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Subbing ... for rehearsals?

Discussion in 'Band Management [BG]' started by EddiePlaysBass, Apr 10, 2009.

  1. EddiePlaysBass


    Feb 26, 2009
    About a year ago, maybe less, I attempted to get a classic rock covers band off the ground with a really good guitarist I know. He got several really good musicians involved but when it came to actual practice I found that I lacked the time to actively pursue this project, so I bailed, figuring at that point (2 rehearsals) there would be no substantial loss anyway.

    Tonight he asked me if I would consider filling in for their bass player early next year, as he will be studying in the US of A (I'm from Belgium - Europe :bassist:) and the rest of the band do not feel like putting the band on a 4 month hiatus. On the one hand I am already stoked at the prospect of playing with these people again, and 4 months is a maximum of 16 rehearsals, so I can swing that.

    But subbing, just for rehearsals??? Idunno, seems like an awful lot of time and trouble for nothing really. And I have my main band for that already :D So I told him that I would do it on two conditions, the first being that I won't share in the rent of the rehearsal space (hey, I'm not charging them a single thing, and it's a 1 hour drive going there) and the second being that we would actually do one gig with me on bass, even if I have to organize it myself :eyebrow:

    Thoughts and opinions?
  2. lawsonman


    Dec 19, 2005
    NW IL
    Seems fair to me.You're doing them a favor IMO.
  3. RustyAxe


    Jul 8, 2008
    Why would they need a sub for rehearsals? And why are there no gigs booked in that four month period? Is someone else playing bass for the gigs? Why isn't he coming to rehearsal (I can answer that ... he isn't getting paid to rehearse!). Personally, unless these were a band that could teach me a thing or two, I'd pass. Nothin' in it for me, y'know?
  4. I'd say sub for their gigs, and get together with them for 1 rehearsal before each gig. Otherwise it's a waste of your time - unless you want to play with them just for the fun of it.
  5. fdeck

    fdeck Supporting Member Commercial User

    Mar 20, 2004
    Madison WI
    HPF Technology LLC
    I've subbed for rehearsals. It depends on the band. With one band in my locale, rehearsing means reading some killer charts and hanging out with a bunch of great musicians.
  6. YUP, I've never even heard of subbing just for rehearsals before, with no gigs in the offing???
  7. EddiePlaysBass


    Feb 26, 2009
    Thanks for your replies so far.

    RustyAxe, these ARE great musicians, about the best I've played with in all these years. So for me, that would be "the reward". For some reason, their local scene has ample guitarists, keyboard players, singers and drummers, but about 3 people play bass (me not included as I'm not from their neck of the woods), including their own bass player. He will be studying abroad, and they don't like the other two bass players, which is why they asked me.

    ashtray, I partially agree on just rehearsing being a waste of my time, which is why I want them to book at least one gig and possibly two in this period, and I will try to book them / us a gig as well.
  8. RustyAxe


    Jul 8, 2008
    Well, money isn't everything, and certainly not the motivation that keeps us playing (if it were, most of would have turned our guitars into firewood years ago!). If you have the time and the inclination then go ahead. But you should be clear that on the off chance a PAYING gig turns up for you elsewhere you'd jump on it. Have fun, make new connections, and learn what you can. Playing for free isn't the worst thing that can happen in a musician's life ... :bassist:
  9. No, paying to play is THE worst thing, followed by playing for free.
  10. Stumbo

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

    Feb 11, 2008
    the Cali Intergalctic Mind Space
    Song Surgeon slow downer software- full 4 hour demo
    Curious why you didn't know that before getting the group together? :confused:

    I mean, you get the group going and then you bale right away? Seems like that the definition of a flake. :ninja:

    Do you have more time now? :confused: Also, since you knew/know there are only a couple of other bass players available in your area, how can you conclude there "would be no substantial loss"?

    Maybe they can get the bass player to download their tunes and record his part so they can continue "rehearsing" doing something like that.

    Or maybe you can do something similar so they'll have bass track to use while their bass player is gone.

    Unless more time has magically opened up, I'd pass.
  11. EddiePlaysBass


    Feb 26, 2009
    Stumbo, at the time as well as now I already played in another band, which I told this particular band up front would be and remain my main band. I bailed because at the first rehearsal the drummer did not show so the lead guitarist played drums and the rhythm guitarist didn't know the solo's so we kinda played backing tracks. Second rehearsal the drummer AND the lead guitarist cancelled at the last minute. Since I get home from work rather late (2 hour commute there and 2 hour commute back) and they live an hour away from me, I decided I did not want to put in the time if the other members did not either. AFAIK in the meantime they got another drummer and have been rehearsing regularly, as well as gigging a few times already. As for the "no substantial loss", what I meant was that with just one rehearsal done, we weren't exactly tuned into each other yet. And I knew that the bassist they currently use was available and would be interested, since his band was going nowhere fast.

    No it hasn't, but this is a short-term commitment I would be making, i.e. 4 months and no more. This I can swing, provided that they actually show up for practice. I do the rehearsals and a gig or two, and at the end of the 4 months when their bass player gets back I'll have a bit more experience under my belt, and a few good contacts for future reference.
  12. nsmar4211


    Nov 11, 2007
    You live in Belgium and have an hour drive to reherse? Heck, that's almost out of the country for you! :) (my singer is from Belgium LOL). Watch out........once he gets over here (USA) he may not come back.... something about sunshine has thus far kept my singer here in Florida :).

    Four months and not one booked gig? This is a working band? Wait, it's Belgium... not as much there as there is here for music (so I'm told).

    Ok, if these guys are your friends and you want to drive 2 hours round trip to hang out once a week, go for it. Definetly do not chip in for any band expenses, you did right there. And yea you should have dibs on a gig-at least the songs you learned. LOL Heck I'd let them set up a gig, let the current player haul his rig, and then go sit in for a set :). Just make it very clear to them that you'll do this for them, but if they don't show up for a practice and you do- this is no longer free, tell em they will have to at the very least pay you gas money, heck I'd charge em for my time if they didn't show. Nothing like the possibility of owing money to get people moving :)

    Hope it works for ya!

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