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What makes your band space comfortable? Outfitting a practice space

Discussion in 'Band Management [BG]' started by JES, Jan 7, 2017.

  1. JES

    JES Supporting Member

    My wife and I are thinking of renting a practice space. We are middle aged leisure musicians (with steady income from day jobs) but play regularly. We are in a band together and also jam with friends. I'm in another band that may or may not move into the space. Everyone has their own gear. She's a drummer and wants a place to have her set ready to go.

    We are looking at a 15x15x8 room. It comes with a couple shelves but that's it. We know we'll need to buy powered PA speakers (we have mics, stands and a mixer), and do some acoustic treatment -- either a GIK kit or we will DIY it if someone we play with is handy. We'll also need lighting and seating (my other band often plays seated).

    So...what else should we be thinking about for outfitting our space? What makes your space nice a nice place to be?
    BBQisgood likes this.
  2. Comfy chairs with a back rest to lean against, so you can sit while practicing. Bar height (24" from floor to seat), especially if they swivel. You wanna be comfortable...
    Oddly likes this.
  3. guy n. cognito

    guy n. cognito Secret Agent Member

    Dec 28, 2005
    Nashville, TN
    15x15 isn't very big for a full band. Other than a few stools, I wouldn't start cramming a bunch of stuff in there.
  4. ThumbBum


    Dec 16, 2016
    Me personally, likes carpet in my band rooms. It provides warmth and comfortability to the practice area. Also, a nice fan and a low to medium lit light can assist in the band practice space as far as being welcoming and cozy. We practice at my drummers house and he has all these things. I almost forgot, he also supplies an ample amount of power strips which is huge.
    bass81800, Oddly and Low84 like this.
  5. Old Blastard

    Old Blastard

    Aug 18, 2013
  6. PauFerro


    Jun 8, 2008
    United States
    For me, I don't worry too much about seating comfort. I have metal fold up chairs they sit on. They can last about 3 hours before they start staying it's time to go home, although rarely do we rehearse that long.

    For me, what makes a good music room is the ease of load-in for the musicians. So, I have a drum kit that is sitting there that keeps getting better and better as musicians interact with it and sell, or give me their old stuff. I also have other sundry equipment for those who want it, to reduce the load in. Most bring their own drum thrones, piano benches, and certain drum accessories. The guitarists always bring their own amplifier. And the music room features near drive-up parking and access.

    There are lots of things I could do better on, though. Like orderliness, keeping the bathroom cleaner for them, etcetera. I think providing water is a nice gesture. Most people start bringing their own if I don't provide, though.

    I also have an air conditioner since the area in which we rehearse isn't part of the A/C in the house.

    The thing I don't like is paying for rehearsal space. I would consider building a shed if the local municipality allows it. I had one group that rehearsed on one in the guy's backyard for a while. You use it long enough, and it pays for itself in saved rental space fees.
    Last edited: Jan 8, 2017
  7. Grumry


    Jul 6, 2016
    A giant glass (tobacco) water pipe.
    FunkBear, Rich Fiscus, CaseyJ and 3 others like this.
  8. guy n. cognito

    guy n. cognito Secret Agent Member

    Dec 28, 2005
    Nashville, TN
    Rich Fiscus, BurnOut and Grumry like this.
  9. JES

    JES Supporting Member

    Thanks everyone!

    I'm responding to Guy's note here since it's a concern. At max capacity, we'd be 6 people, 2 guitar amps (largest being a Fender Twin), bass head and single speaker, drum set (kick, snare, 3 cymbals, 2 toms, seat), 2 PA speakers (Mackie Thump or similar), mixer, keyboards, and 4 mics on mic stands. We figure the gear will all be along walls.

    Those of you with more of a mind for this sort of thing--is it likely to be too much?

    We have an option for a larger room, which is a little irregularly shaped, but costs more and there's a pillar in one spot.

    I LOLed the "shed" comment. We do not have an option of not paying for space. We live in a big city, not everyone drives, and so location matters a lot. My wife and I live in a condo and after 16 months of borrowing others drums or using whatever crap set is in the practice space set, she bought herself a nice kit, and now is motivated to have it set up somewhere so she can play it rather than whatever crap is at the space. Also, the acoustics of the rental spaces are always terrible, and I believe with better acoustics we will be quieter.
    PauFerro likes this.
  10. JES

    JES Supporting Member

    Oh, and pot should be legal here in a matter of months, at which point it would not have to be a tobacco pipe.
    Last edited: Jan 8, 2017
    Roberto Nunez and Grumry like this.
  11. guy n. cognito

    guy n. cognito Secret Agent Member

    Dec 28, 2005
    Nashville, TN
    6 people in a space that size will be tight. It's manageable if you don't have stools and the like in the way.
  12. Oops, there goes the constructive use of rehearsal time... (and yeah, I get that you were funnin').

    For the record, I have no issue with someone catching an occasional buzz. AFTER rehearsals or gigs.
  13. Stools, carpet, a bar fridge. A coat rack on the wall will keep things tidier. Also, if you can use something other than fluorescent lighting.

    No couches as they wind up being a place to stack guitar cases.
    Pumpkin, JES and PauFerro like this.
  14. JES

    JES Supporting Member

    Actually, now we're fully OT, but I play 100% sober. I messed around with it in my early 20s but found it doesn't improve my playing or my enjoyment of playing. Listening to music, well, that's another thing....

    Oh, and brilliant on the coat tree. We are in a winter climate after all. Boot trays too.
  15. woodyng2

    woodyng2 Supporting Member

    Oct 4, 2015
    Oregon Coast
    IMG_0126.GIF Oh,i dunno,some curtains,a few throw pillows.....:smug:
    Aaron Mc and Renaissance like this.
  16. Low84

    Low84 Supporting Member

    Mar 30, 2014
    electric fans
    fretter likes this.
  17. pedroims


    Dec 19, 2007

    What will make it confortable for me

    a) A drummer that can control his volume or an electric drum kit.

    b) Everybody playing on reasonable volume: 8x10, 4x12, are not allowed.
    obimark, pcake, alack and 1 other person like this.
  18. Ellery


    Mar 25, 2015
    A wet bar.
    btmpancake likes this.
  19. flam


    Sep 20, 2010
    Tempe, Arizona
    Depends on how you want to use your time at practice. Out of all of the practice spaces I've had, I always find that the most comfy ones tend to be the least productive.

    Outside of basic comfort things like lights, and climate control (I find heat is necessary for playing, but not A/C), I would get a P.A., a rug for drums if it isn't carpeted, some storage for spares and commonly forgotten items, and a few instrument stands.

    Putting a couch in my last one was the worst idea, though it made hanging out and jamming more fun.
    fretless_bill likes this.
  20. shadven

    shadven Twang-tastic Bass Player and Song Writer Supporting Member

    Dec 30, 2009
    Tampa, FL
    I rock, therefore I am.
    I like vintage gear, so having my own rehearsal space allows me to geek out on vintage other than just bass stuff. My space is easy load-in, drum kit (1967 Rogers), 1966 Super Reverb, 1967 Dual Showman, decent PA, super clean bathroom, oriental rugs, refrigerator, tons of poster from shows I've played, a bunch of vintage bass amps - pretty much every flavor of vintage Ampeg B-12, B-15, B-18, V4B, SVT, Kustom Tuck N Roll, SWR Basic 350. I could go on, but I am annoying myself:)
    btmpancake likes this.

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