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Tribute Band - What are some good bands to Tribute?

Discussion in 'Band Management [BG]' started by SmokinJoe992, Mar 14, 2019.

  1. Tribute bands seem to be doing pretty well in my area. I am somewhat interested in starting one. Aside from the ones that are done to death (Beatles, Zeppelin, Pink Floyd etc.) What would be some bands that you think would be good ones to tribute. Some of the ones that seem to be doing well in my area are AC/DC, Tool, Sublime, Allman Bros, Fleetwood Mac, and Prince. Also if you have ever been in a tribute band, What are some tips or advice you would give to someone starting out. I would mainly be interested in 80's to 90's rock style bands, but would still like to hear other ideas.
    SuperUltra likes this.
  2. The Trinity:
    Black Sabbath
    The Ramones

    Disclaimer: These tributes might not get you full bookings in big venues, but their songs would be fun to play.
    Last edited: Mar 16, 2019 at 8:30 AM
  3. Kriegs

    Kriegs Peace

    Feb 14, 2018
    MA/ RI area
    How about doing a KISS Tribute Tribute. You could play Dave Smith who plays Gene Simmons. Bassist-ception!
  4. Only if all the band members are little people.
  5. Kriegs

    Kriegs Peace

    Feb 14, 2018
    MA/ RI area
    This guy gets it :thumbsup:
  6. ArtechnikA

    ArtechnikA I endorsed a check once... Gold Supporting Member

    Feb 24, 2013
    I see ads like this pretty frequently in the local CL, and they all have the same format:
    " Forming Queen Tribute - just need Freddy Mercury "
    " Stones Tribute - just need Mick Jagger " (This one's running right now...)
    " Forming Sade Tribute - just need someone who looks and sounds just like Sade. " (Trust me - everyone who looks and sounds like Sade is already working...)

    So many 'big' bands featured a unique centerpiece. Without that, you've got just another band.
    So - you probably need to focus on highly popular bands that featured no one special person - this is a challenge...

    I do have to admit that I have seen pretty darned convincing SRV and Jimi tributes - but those guys clearly put their lives into establishing the role.
    zenandzen, Julian G, obimark and 11 others like this.
  7. The Ramones would be very interesting. Black Sabbath is awesome. Motorhead would be great.
  8. Agreed, find a singer who looks and sounds like someone first, and then form a band around him. Also, keep in mind that if you are going to do a Stones, Led Zep, or Van Halen tribute you will have a ton of competition. Look in your market and see what is missing.
  9. I agree with you. One of my first ideas was a Guns n Roses tribute, but then they got back together, and its tough to find someone who looks and sounds like Axl.
    sludgetail likes this.
  10. Exactly. Thats why I am looking for bands that would go over well, and there are not 100 other tribute acts already.
  11. The Owl

    The Owl

    Aug 14, 2005
    Atlanta GA
    King Crimson
    Traffic/Steve Winwood
    Thin Lizzy
    Wishbone Ash
    Blue Oyster Cult
    Dave Clark Five
    Pat Travers
    Marshall Tucker
    Dead Kennedys
    Deep Purple
    SmokinJoe992 likes this.
  12. garp


    Feb 7, 2009
    Connecticut USA
    Want to be really unique? Be a tribute act to "one-hit-wonder" bands.
    • A-Ha
    • Norman Greenbaum
    • The Knack
    • The Monroes
    • Duncan Sheik
    • Soft Cell
    • Survivor
    • Dexys Midnight Runners
    ...keep going until you have three or four sets of material. ;)
  13. GrapeBass


    Jun 10, 2004
    Graphic designer: Yorkville Sound
    One-derful Idea!
    Bassamatic, Rickter, dBChad and 4 others like this.
  14. Thats a great list. Thin Lizzy and Deep Purple in particular would be great.
    The Owl and GBBSbassist like this.
  15. That is an interesting idea. I have seen tribute acts that do eras or genres instead of one particular band. Definitely an interesting concept.
    lfmn16 likes this.
  16. GBBSbassist

    GBBSbassist I actually play more guitar... Supporting Member

    Nov 23, 2010
    My only advice for a tribute band is to make sure everyone is on the same page with how serious it's going to be.

    Is the look important? Is the sound? Dress like the band or not? Putting your own spin on the tunes (playing Queen songs as funk for example)?

    It's weird to see tribute acts where one member goes all out on some of the specifics and others don't.

    I've been wanting to do a Thin Lizzy tribute for a long time.

    I've always wanted to do a sort of tribute band where instead of paying tribute to one band, each member would portray a specific rock legend from a few different eras. It would almost feel like a rock "supergroup". Would take a lot of dedication though. It would be insanely marketable if done well.

    I tried talking a band a few years ago into something like that, but they didn't seem to be interested in putting any more effort in it other than sloppily learning a new song a month.
  17. garp


    Feb 7, 2009
    Connecticut USA
    To @GBBSbassist's point, I guess it all comes down to the marketability of the tribute. A few years ago, someone in my neck of the woods wanted to do a Stevie Nicks tribute act. Not a Fleetwood Mac tribute (of which there are already too many, IMHO) – just Stevie Nicks. Well, that's a total of about 16 minutes of recognizable material...maybe on the Edge of Seventeen. ;)
    SmokinJoe992, twocargar and lfmn16 like this.
  18. bolophonic


    Dec 10, 2009
    Durham, NC
    GG Allin.
  19. lfmn16

    lfmn16 Supporting Member

    Sep 21, 2011
    charles town, wv
    Just my opinion:

    First pick a band that has enough known songs to play whatever amount of time you are playing. I see some suggestions in this thread for bands who don't have anywhere near enough recognizable material to fill even one set.

    Second, be honest about your talent pool. A Yes tribute band would be great, but can you find a Rick Wakeman, Christ Squire and Jon Anderson?

    Third, see what other tribute bands are playing in your area. Will your area support a tribute band?

    Just a suggestion for a tribute band - Creedence Clearwater Revival. You don't need stellar musicians, just need someone that can cop the vocals. The Doors - same thing, even the keyboard parts aren't all that hard.

    Good luck.
    zenandzen, City, gln1955 and 14 others like this.
  20. GBBSbassist

    GBBSbassist I actually play more guitar... Supporting Member

    Nov 23, 2010
    If you love cheesy songs, and you can find a Lou Gramm voice, a Foreigner tribute would probably do well.

    Probably the best advice in this thread.

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