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Who'd of thunk it!"

Discussion in 'Bass Humor & Gig Stories [BG]' started by P. Aaron, Jan 17, 2003.

  1. P. Aaron

    P. Aaron Supporting Member

    So... I've always prided myself on learning as much about music as I could for purely compositional purposes.

    Going back almost 2 decades, I've learned lots of covers, as well as diligently wrote or co-wrote originals with other band mates to play exclusively our/my own stuff.

    As an original band, we had good shows and awful shows. Spent lots of $$$ recording and promoting ourselves, and took gigs just to "get noticed". All for naught it seems in retrospect.

    With limited time between family and occupation, I am playing cheezy covers in a cheezy cover band. We make more money, and draw larger crowds than I ever experienced before. I'll make more money in the next 6 months playing other peoples music and crowds loving it, than I ever did in 10 years trying to be an original "artist".

    It just seems ironic. Can anybody else relate to this?
  2. People in bars want to hear music that's familiar to them. We all know that introducing new things to an inebriated person can leave them feeling greatly unsettled.

    That said, I'm not sure why I'd hire a cover band rather than getting a DJ.
  3. P. Aaron

    P. Aaron Supporting Member

    Rather than instantly take humbrage at your latter comment, I thought about it for a while.

    It's true that a DJ in alot of situations would be just fine. But a live band, however cheezy still has that connection to an audience that a jukebox/DJ don't.
    You just have to communicate the song effectively, not neccesarily note for note. To win an audience.
  4. Matt Till

    Matt Till

    Jun 1, 2002
    Edinboro, PA
    Oh yeah it's always like that. Cover bands get you paid, original bands get you laid :rolleyes: Sorry the rhyme was there and I had to do it... I don't know why. But yeah, you don't hear too many famous cover bands. And there is a large amount of joy in having people enjoy music you wrote instead of music Lynyrd Skynyrd wrote.
  5. unless you ARE lynyrd skynyrd. then it works both ways.
  6. im Lynyrd Skynyrd so i dont need to worry
  7. jcadmus


    Apr 2, 2000
    I'll be honest -- I like playing covers. In most cases, it's music I dearly love.

    I've played originals a few times in my life, but to be frank, there are an awful lot of originals bands out there that think they can write, when in reality they can't.
  8. Covers are fun, even if it's just thumping out root notes for 3 1/2 minutes. It's really about the people you play with. Well...for me, anyway.

    And on a side note...
    "Who would have thunk it" shouldn't translate into "who'd of thunk it" because there is no "of" in the original sentence. :p
  9. Munjibunga

    Munjibunga Total Hyper-Elite Member Gold Supporting Member

    May 6, 2000
    San Diego (when not at Groom Lake)
    Independent Contractor to Bass San Diego
    People want to hear songs they know. They don't want to take a chance on potentially cruddy originals from some local band. Hence, they will pay more for the former.
  10. Nick man

    Nick man

    Apr 7, 2002
    Tampa Bay
    If you plan on making a living out of playing bass, you are probably safer taking the cover band route. Still not too safe.

    Thats not for me though. Id rather be proud of what Im playing knowing its my own material that I wrote myself. Besides, my goal isnt to get by, its to get noticed and make it big.

    That being said, my heart has to be in the music I play that takes me where I want to go. Im proud to say Ive already held that position twice despite difficult circumstances.

    To be young and niave(sp?).....;)

  11. PollyBass

    PollyBass ******

    Jun 25, 2001
    Shreveport, LA
    Ya, i have desided to not play in a cover band, sure, id get more money, but i would want to play MY or THE BANDS songs.

    Just me. i guess...
  12. My main band is all original and we only play covers at practice for jam songs and such. None of us are delusional, but we all would rather play our OWN stuff and take the riskier route of trying to "make it" as an original band. None of us are quitting our dayjobs just yet :)

    I got invited to come jam with my brother-in-law and a friend of his, who just left a fairly successful cover band because of personal differences. I show up and sure enough, we start playing some Skynard and other stuff that his former band had covered, but during the jam session he asked if we minded him bringing in something he wrote.

    Me being me, I said "hell no!" and my enthusiasm seemed to set him back on his heels for a bit. He later told me that he'd been playing the same 30 songs or so every weekend for so long he was sick of it, but he was reluctant to bring any of his own stuff to the table because there was no money in it.

    I have to say I like his stuff a lot and it was fun improvising over his melodies and seeing him smile.

    I made the terrible mistake of letting my avocation (writing) become my vocation (technical writing). I had quite a bit of promise as a fiction writer at one time, but I'd get so burnt out because I have to spend 8+ hours a day writing the stuff no one ever reads that the thought of sitting down and trying to create fiction drove me into some pretty black depression.

    With bass and music, I still get to exercise that creative part of my brain (and even get to sneak in some writing with lyrics!) without the feeling that I'm spending all my time at a keyboard grinding out sentences and paragraphs.

    As long as I'm playing stuff I believe in and enjoy, I'm not worry about the money. That's why I still have a day job. A friend once told me to do what I loved and the money would eventually follow.
  13. fastplant


    Sep 26, 2002
    The worst band I have ever been in was also the most profitable, because we played covers. I enjoy playing covers (if they're the right ones) and I am in a cover band now that is doing pretty good. I love doing original stuff, but I've done it for so long that I can't take another night of playing my heart out on a song I wrote in front of 10 people who could care less about it. In the band I'm in now we do play a few originals, but it's mostly covers, and for now I'm enjoying it quite a bit.
  14. blindman


    Aug 14, 2002
    I think that we all can agree that cover bands get the bills paid.I am in one for the second time in 15 years.I really got tired of playing the same old s**t so I took a long break from playing period and now I'm doing it again.This time it is with my old guitarist and 2 young guys(singer and drummer).I actually feel refreshed and we have been gigging every saturday and getting paid.I am sure that the subject of originals will come up soon.And I think we can write great music.When it happens,we will introduce it slowly.
  15. P. Aaron

    P. Aaron Supporting Member

    The funny thing is, Club Owners pay us! We don't have a cover charge, so to speak!

    I did also state that I play in a cheezy cover band because of time constraints, and the obligation in an originals band is more than I have time to give.

    If you're writing your own stuff, and getting paid for it! Keep doing it!

    Originally posted by Sheep Man

    And on a side note...
    "Who would have thunk it" shouldn't translate into "who'd of thunk it" because there is no "of" in the original sentence.
    I mulled over this before posting originally.
    I could have said: "Who'd 'uh' thunk it!"

    "Who would have thunk it!" tomato/tomahto
  16. :D:D
  17. Munjibunga

    Munjibunga Total Hyper-Elite Member Gold Supporting Member

    May 6, 2000
    San Diego (when not at Groom Lake)
    Independent Contractor to Bass San Diego
    You are correct, sir.
  18. Turock

    Turock Supporting Member

    Apr 30, 2000
    I'll play almost anything, almost anywhere. I haven't had a "real" job in years. I would much rather play music for a living than sell real estate, work in some factory, or sit behind some desk, etc. (no offence). We do some all original shows, but the bulk of our work is a mixture of originals and "fossillized" covers and if that is what it takes to pay bills then I'll gladly do it. I know guys who refuse to do covers but yet they still head out every Monday morning to begin a week at a job that they hate.
    The guitarist/singer/frontman of our band toured and played guitar with James Brown and is well known and well liked in this area. He has five albums worth of original material for us to draw from.
  19. P. Aaron

    P. Aaron Supporting Member

    I love TalkBass. I appreciate your help in "bettering"
    my game!
  20. Munjibunga

    Munjibunga Total Hyper-Elite Member Gold Supporting Member

    May 6, 2000
    San Diego (when not at Groom Lake)
    Independent Contractor to Bass San Diego
    Not "Whod've," "Who'd've."

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