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What's that they say about "a bird in the hand"?

Discussion in 'Band Management [BG]' started by AMp'D.2play, Nov 27, 2012.

  1. AMp'D.2play

    AMp'D.2play Supporting Member

    Feb 12, 2010
    I'd been in this one particular (start-up) band since July. It's a niche band, oldies / doo wop stuff. There were some very talented pieces to the puzzle in place (especially the 2 female vox who had been in a similar band in the past), but there'd also been a good amount of turnover trying to find the right mix. We weren't ready to gig, and probably wouldn't be for another few months. They were going for a highly choreographed stage show, too ... you know, poodle skirts & all that ... which took time to nail down the act. Rehearsals were usually an hour drive (each way) after work, and my split of the studio rental usually came to ~ $10 a pop.

    In the meantime, back in October, a co-worker invited me to sit in on one of their gigs for a few songs. It was only 3 songs, but they seemed to like what they heard. Several days after this, they were notified that their bass player was relocating out of state much sooner than planned, i.e. immediately. So they asked me to join the band as their bassist. This band as a whole is not as talented as the oldies band "could be". For one, the vox are not as strong, and the lead guitarist - who also happens to be the BL - has a tendency to play too loud &/or with too much distortion. They do play more songs that I like outside of a band setting, which is nice, too. Bottom line is, though, they had/have gigs lined up. Not lucrative gigs, but not chump change, either. I'm not in this for the $$, so it's enough for me.

    Since my department lost 3 employees since mid-October, my workload increased, which also restricted my ability to leave work early on rehearsal days. My co-worker said not to worry about rehearsals for this 2nd band; he'd just keep me in the loop on anything I'd need to know over & above just learning the songs on my own. My work schedule probably won't ease until replacements are on board, maybe by February/March.

    Bottom line, I called the BL of this 1st band and told him I was leaving. I made the decision to leave a promising opportunity (who knows if/when they'd ever be gig-ready) for one that has some weaknesses, but is busy at the moment & into the future.
  2. jaywa


    May 5, 2008
    Iowa City, IA
    That oldies band sounds like a time and money suck, with a boatload of pretentiousness thrown in. Cheeze city. Even if/when they get their act together I'm not sure how much of a market a band like that would have unless they're targeting casinos, which eat that stuff up and can pay decent but are not fun gigs AT ALL. Sounds like a high overhead outfit that's never gonna be playing out that much and where you'll always be putting more into it than you get back.

    The other gig... low effort, steady gigs, a good band "vibe" and some extra cash on the side which always helps in this economy. I'd say you made the right call, definitely.
  3. craig.p


    Sep 28, 2008
    New Hampshire
    My acid test for deciding between Meh Band A and Meh Band B is to identify which one will keep me awake less at night and give me fewer migraines thinking about its weaknesses and/or future potential.

    BTW, there's usually a reason for high turnover. I'm guessing that each time someone left, it's because his initial suspicions concerning (list weak spots here) were eventually confirmed.
  4. bassbully

    bassbully Endorsed by The PHALEX CORN BASS..mmm...corn!

    Sep 7, 2006
    Blimp City USA
    I think you made the right move. A band that you know a player, closer to home with gig and music you like sounds like a winner. Yeah so maybe the music is not as strong as the first band but there is time for improvement. Most folks won't care if you are not a perfect band they just want a band to drink to in most places.
  5. What he said! Bands should be geared towards getting gigs first, and then worrying about tarting up their stage shows. They're doing it backwards, and that's why people are leaving every 5 minutes. You need to be in front of an audience, and that's really the bottom line.
  6. AMp'D.2play

    AMp'D.2play Supporting Member

    Feb 12, 2010
    Wow, you guys are good! Yep, the former oldies band these 2 women singers were in played casinos as their bigger shows - CT & eastern PA. I don't think they were playing Atlantic City casinos. :rolleyes: Even if they did, any of these venues would've been a good 2 hour drive one-way. I always wanted to ask the 2 singers why they left their former band, but I think it may have been a touchy subject. :ninja: The material also got to be boring. I-vi-IV-V songs 'til the cows come home.

    As for the other band, I found out today the place where we gigged on Saturday just booked us for once a month through June! That's now 3 venues where we're in a regular rotation.
  7. jaywa


    May 5, 2008
    Iowa City, IA
    Sounds like your new band is definitely doing something right. Congrats on the switch!