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Troubling comments heard at a band meeting

Discussion in 'Band Management [BG]' started by vulturedog, Feb 5, 2014.

  1. vulturedog


    Feb 19, 2013
    This past Saturday 3 of the 4 of us had a band meeting to discuss some problems that have creeped up over the last month or so. The main problems have been building between the lead guitarist and the singer. I had some issues to address also but the main problems were between the Lead guitarist and the singer. After the lead guitarists and singer worked out their differences it was brought up about the singer to basically NOT play rhythm guitar during our shows! He makes a lot of mistakes. He was actually very understanding and agreed. (He would always admit he was a "hack" guitarist any way)We also agreed to not bring another guitarist because we all work and another schedule to work around just isn't going to cut it! So the lead guitarist brings up the fact that if no Rythm guitar playing that I need to play the "Rhythm only and not "lead bass" during his "wonderful" guitar leads in the song. Mind you I have been playing bass since I was 16.... Im 41 now:) so I'm like duh what!no ****. But I keep my mouth shut and let him proceed and then the singer chimes in too yeah if we have no rhythm guitar you might have to play more "chords and stuff". First off I do like to play "aggressively" and I like to "attack the bass guitar and make it more melodic instead of 8th notes with minor fills.but usually during the writing period to try stuff out record it listen to it to see how it sounds etc...with the current originals I actually was holding back on many of them..there has been many times in the past where I wrote something that was fun to play but just didn't jive with the song so I scratched it and played something else. Then the guitarist brought up the fact that I record and send out ideas via email he's like "what am I supposed to do with this?" Basically when I get inspired while working at home I'll record a track on "garage band" and email out to the guys hoping it will inspire the others to write! Instead I get the answer of well I can't hear any of this stuff on my phone excuse! You. Ever heard of ear buds or playing it on your computer speakers? Anyways then singer starts in with yeah I just can't write lyrics to your stuff "too many notes"! I've come up with several bass lines that I ran it past old friends that are musicians saying hey that cool you should use that! Instead it just get pushed to the side and we just work on the mostly the singers songs although we were able to get song done from the guitarist but he still hates it
    the last band I was in we used to mind each other's own instrument write the music then add lyrics to it and tweek the music here and there. Now it's all ****ed up!
    At this point I'm just venting on here but it's really ****ing bothering me. At this point going forward we are going to try a different writing style to write "our" stuff and I'm waiting to see how it goes if we can't get another song finished by end of feb. I might start looking else were
  2. spz8


    Jan 19, 2009
    Glen Cove, NY
    I understand your situation from experience. If you want to stick it out with these players AND have some creative input, you will have to write the guitar parts as well, or at least be able to write a cohesive framework for your guitar player. As a guess, he is likely a play-by-ear guitarist only with no theory knowledge. If this won't fly, it's likely the end of the line, unless you take a back seat to writing. Good luck!
  3. Hmm, its sound as if they might just be asking you to holddown the fort more - stay simple, less fills and more root - giving the vocals/guitarist more support?
  4. AltGrendel

    AltGrendel Squire Jag SS fan. Supporting Member

    May 21, 2009
    Mid-Atlantic USA.
    Sounds like time for a side project.
  5. vulturedog


    Feb 19, 2013
    Funny thing is that's what I have been doing if you listen to the songs there is hardly anything that is even remotely a lead bass but what ever. I'll stick it out for a while been in this for two years so I have a lot time invested in this.

    Side note :oops:ne of the major problems we have been having is basically we get the music written .. Waiting on singer to write lyrics ....doesn't happen... Song gets pushed aside
  6. vulturedog


    Feb 19, 2013
    Exactly what I've been thinking!
  7. I bet Geezer can write paragraphs.
  8. vulturedog


    Feb 19, 2013
    The other thing is all of us are very different musically.
    Guitarist is into metal Metallica, rise against etc
    Singer is into main stream punk or nwer punk bad religion green day etc.l
    Me I love melodic music and "progressive" style and alternative/ grunge
    Drummer is into screamo stuff and mostly metal
    So we are pretty diverse....
  9. wow, yeah that's wild - oh well, good luck.
  10. vulturedog


    Feb 19, 2013
    Always an English major on every board!! Keep in mind I typed all that on my phone so the screen is tiny. when I get home I'll correct it just for you!
  11. deathsdj


    Sep 18, 2010
    Wichita, KS
    I have ran into guys who can't write from a bass line a few times myself. I didn't play with them for very long.
  12. mellowinman

    mellowinman Free Man

    Oct 19, 2011
    Agree to whatever they say.

    Play exactly what you want.

    Ask them, "is that better?"


  13. It can be difficult to solo over a complex or melodic bass line if you're not an expert. So, make your playing a little bit easier to follow. You don't have to default to 8ths on the root. Define the chord notes more ie. play more root notes, add some 3rd, 5th & 7th notes.

    As for your writing - you need to provide a recording of your ideas with both bass AND guitar chords recorded if you want to work with that guitarist. Clearly he just doesn't get bass and can't come up with chords that fit. If you cant do that yourself, just find another guitarist to help you find some basic chords, record it, THEN share it with your bands guitarist.

    If your singer can't come up with lyrics, try yourself. If you can't, ask someone outside the band to help you start a melody or some of the words in the chorus, etc. Make it as easy as possible for your band members to work with your ideas - if you had the initial inspiration/idea it is up to you to lead them in developing the song (most songs I've written have started as lyrics - I find it much easier that way).
  14. ChrisB2

    ChrisB2 Bass... in your fass

    Feb 27, 2008
    TalkBass > Off Topic
    When you record and send out ideas, is the recording just bass only? If so you're going about it wrong. Build your songs from a chord progression on guitar or piano, not from a bass fill. Create entire songs; chord progression, melody, and lyrics and your band will likely work with you. Or just quit...
  15. obimark


    Sep 1, 2011
    Ah--- the sad, sad world of originals bands... ;-) Sound and fury about stuff that most likely no one other than yourselves even wants to hear. (Unless you are one of the ones who actually has an audience and can play a solo gig and bring 250 people, which are FEW and FAR between. With this emphasis on lead guitar that is unlikely, unless you are the jam band type that brings 100s.

    But on topic- I have said it before "Many bands want to FEEL the bass, but NEVER actually HEAR it." This is probably one of them.
  16. hrodbert696

    hrodbert696 Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Mixed feelings on this one. We've had threads that say "Just be the bass player, play the root, understand your role" and threads saying "My greatest regret is holding back and not playing what I felt." If you're writing originals, though, there's an obvious starting point - play the songs both ways, record both versions, and see what actually makes for a better song. Ask third parties' opinion who don't know what the band argument has been. The goal should be to make the best music you can, not to show off what you can do.

    I've had times playing cover songs where I've simplified bass lines to stay on the roots and rhythm more than the original, because there was no keys or rhythm guitar to outline the chords under a solo and I had to make sure it was there. Other time, the lack of a rhythm guitar is freeing, it creates more space that needs filling and you can be more free with a melodic line. Depends on the song and the group. Bottom line - depending on the song, your bandmates may well have a point, and laying back may help you make better music.
  17. AaronVonRock


    Feb 22, 2013
    Yeah, OP. Listen to this muffinhead. You suck, everyone will hate your songs, and you'll never amount to anything. Great advice.

    I would listen to what your band mates say but if you feel strongly enough about the material you're writing and the style you're playing, I would also keep my eyes open for other people to play with.
  18. Zooberwerx

    Zooberwerx Gold Supporting Member

    Dec 21, 2002
    Virginia Beach, VA
    You can be a great accompanist and still appear to not be "too busy"...but it's not as easy as it sounds. Best example I can think of is the late great Tom "T-Bone" Wolk. One of the best jams / grooves going is "Sarah Smile" although I don't believe Tom did the original recording.

  19. lfmn16


    Sep 21, 2011
    charles town, wv
    When you don't say anything, many people assume you are agreeing. This is the type of thing you need to address immediately. It sounds like either you or the band will be unhappy. Time to look elsewhere.
  20. Just admit it, you're already looking. This is just your way of justifying it. Everybody does it. Thats what craigslist was made for. That and hookers. And you know you look at those to. Matter of fact, Ima go look right now. Join me whydontcha. See ya in the funny papers dog. good luck, breakin up is hard to do.