Worst request, best request

Discussion in 'Band Management [BG]' started by jive1, May 27, 2003.

  1. jive1

    jive1 Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member Commercial User

    Jan 16, 2003
    Owner/Retailer: Jive Sound
    Requests from the audience - some of us hate it, some of us don't mind. Does anybody ever get good requests? I would flip out if someone asked me to play Birdland, or Continuum (especially because I've been practicing them lately), but I don't think it would ever happen when you are in a Blues band. Unfortunately it's stuff like "Keep Your Hands to Yourself" or something like that that people ask for.
    So what is the best and worst request that you ever played (or didn't)?

    My best had to be back in 1989 when someone requested Anesthesia (Pulling Teeth). I loved watching the smartass drop his jaw when I borrowed the guitarist's distortion pedal, and the drummer and I cranked it out. Thank God for "Guitar for the Practicing Musician". The worst was about 5 years ago when I was in a Chicago Style blues band, when some woman asked us if we new any "Tainted Love" by Soft Cell with a straight face.
  2. One night we were playing a somewhat shady bar in a strip-mall in Pacifica. Some roudy sauced-up fellow in the back continued to request Johnny Cash and Dick Dale, so we humored him with a few measures of each. That wasn't so bad, but then a woman came up to the stage and asked us to play Guns and Roses! A surf band! I think I may have told her off...
  3. 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
    Rock band on stage:

    Request: "Hey, you guys know any DIXIELAND?"

    Response: "Hey, you see any BANJOS and TUBAS up here?"
  4. fastplant


    Sep 26, 2002
    I hate it when people actually get really pissed if you don't play a certain song, like you intentionally didn't learn it to make them mad.

    In my last band we played Friend Of the Devil by the Dead, and as soon as we were finished, this girl ran up to the stage to ask if we did any Dead songs. We told her we just played one and she threw a fit calling us liars, really strange.

    Then just a few weeks ago this guy told us we HAD to play a Bad to the Bone, while we probably would have no trouble playing it since it's so easy, it would have gone over like a turd in the punch bowl so we didn't do it. Well, the guy then wanted to fight us, thankfully he got drunk and forgot about it by the time we got off stage.
  5. Dave Castelo

    Dave Castelo

    Apr 19, 2000
    Performance Forums, here we go!
  6. secretdonkey


    Oct 9, 2002
    Austin, TX
    Years ago some drunk requested "Cowboy Song" by Thin Lizzy. We didn't know the song, but I rummaged through my mental closet and pulled out the main little motif lick of the song and played it through once or twice. That was enough to convince the drunk that we knew the song but were just holding out on him. A song or two later, the drunk returns from the bar with a box of little coffee/cocktail stirrer straws, which he heaves at the stage. The little straws are so light that they just flutter and rain down on us like snowflakes. We're not sure whether this was intended to be funny or seriously provacative, but we couldn't contain our laughter for more than about five seconds.

    Same band, different gig - somebody steps up onstage and acts like he's in charge. We don't know if he's a club manager we didn't meet or what. He insists - insists - that we play a fast little 12 bar blues. We exchange looks, shrug, and comply - and soon discover that we are supplying music for a male stripper who has been hired for some female regular's surprise birthday celebration. Agggh... the mental picture of this guy's hairy butt in a leopard print thong is still enough to turn my stomach after all these years. I guess that was karmic payback for gloating over getting to play at a strip club with girls 'performing' on either side of me.

  7. thrash_jazz


    Jan 11, 2002
    Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
    Artist: JAF Basses, Circle K Strings
    Karmic payback perhaps, but I'd say it was worth it.

    How did you get a gig at a strip club? I've never heard of a live band playing at one, not recently anyway.
  8. secretdonkey


    Oct 9, 2002
    Austin, TX
    That would have been about 1987. I was home from college for a holiday and went to sit in with some friends. This was a *really* low rent kinda place, too.

    The male-stripper incident was with a different band, years later, maybe 1995 or so...
  9. Gia


    Feb 28, 2001
    worst request - "show us your rack, we've been waiting for hours"

    best request - "play the solo to maxwell murder" :D :D
  10. jive1

    jive1 Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member Commercial User

    Jan 16, 2003
    Owner/Retailer: Jive Sound
    I wonder what the phenomena behind that is. When I was younger and brasher, I used to respond to guys/gals who had that attitude with "Hey can you wash my car?" or "Can you clean up my apartment?" I figured that it was unfair for the audience to be the only people to make requests, I wanted to make requests of my own too.
  11. Gia


    Feb 28, 2001
    I am inherently proud :D
  12. moley


    Sep 5, 2002
    Hampshire, UK
    What, because of your rack? :D
  13. Gia


    Feb 28, 2001
    both, actually.
  14. Matt Till

    Matt Till

    Jun 1, 2002
    Edinboro, PA
    One night... stop me if you've heard this one before, because I probably told it... I was playing in my uncle's band and we played brown eyed girl during the second set. Then we got a request for it during the fourth set... then again near the end of the fourth set. So as we finish the last song, instead of spiking with the rest of the band, I start strumming open strings and the rest of the band goes and gets something to drink. I keep strumming open strings, which I'm sure you know sounds awful. Then I start singing Brown Eyed girl in a high King Diamond Voice and then grunt "BROWN EYED GIRL!!!!" in a death metal voice. My uncle was laughing and yelled "KEEP GOING!" but I had to quit because I was acting like I was dead serious and didn't want to start laughing at all the people staring at me. :D
  15. Gabe


    Jan 21, 2003
    How did you get a gig at a strip club? I've never heard of a live band playing at one, not recently anyway. [/B][/QUOTE]

    IF the back of the album (one of the early ones; can't remember which)is to be believed, Bob Dylan used to play at a strip club. Talk about clashing. How is a stripper supposed to dance to Leopard Skin Pill Box Hat I wonder.
  16. corinpills


    Nov 19, 2000
    Boston, MA
    "The worst was about 5 years ago when I was in a Chicago Style blues band, when some woman asked us if we new any "Tainted Love" by Soft Cell with a straight face"

    Originally done by Gloria Jones in a Memphis soul style in, I think, 1966. It's essentially a Stax soul tune. Maybe she knew that. Probably not, but it would have been great if you had taken it back to teh original version (which is killer if you haven't heard it.)
  17. uglybassplayer


    Aug 24, 2001
    New Jersey
    :confused: And I thought you only owned a combo ;) :D
  18. best request was at an early gig with my "last" band in 1996. we'd gone over very well at this one place and the audience was demanding an encore. someone yelled for an ac/dc song. now, no one in the band could have possibly sung like brian johnson or bon scott, but we looked at each other and quickly decided on a run-through of "you shook me all night long", which we'd never played as a band before. (c'mon, who _doesn't_ know the changes to that one?!?) we solved the vocal problem by asking if anyone wanted to try singing it, and some pink panther-looking guy (real tall and skinny) took the mic and did his best brian johnson screech.

    closest thing to a worst request was in my first semi-pro band ten years earlier. between sets some guy cornered me and asked me if we knew some neil young song whose title I didn't recognize at the time ("powerfinger"). i had to say no. would you believe the leader of the band got pissed off at me for _telling the truth_ to this guy?!?
  19. fourfinger


    Apr 17, 2003
    Central Ohio
    Funny request:

    A country/rock band I was in got asked to play the then-popular country song "Something in Red," in which a lady goes shopping for clothes to impress men. Maybe they didn't notice that we were an all-male band.

    Even Funnier Request:

    It started with the bartender saying, "Turn it down some more, I STILL can't hear my drink orders!" Meanwhile, we onstage honestly COULD hear the drink orders, because we were already turned down so low.

    I turned my amp the rest of the way OFF, since there was no place left to go. The drummer began playing with one hand while simultaneously packing up his kit with the other. (By the end of the set, his entire kit consisted of bass, snare, high hat and empty stands!)

    But then, at the end of this unbelievable set, came the unbelievable request: "Can you guys play here again a couple times in July and August?" (Gee, of course... NOT!)
  20. I thought it was a bad request at first. But this girl requested "Hang on Slupie" at our car show gig this weekend. We made her sing it (good policy if you want to avoid having to play dumb requests).

    To our surprise, she sang it pretty darned well and we got in a good groove on it. Turned out to be the biggest applause we got. When you nail a request, it seems like the people realize you are a pretty versatile and talented group.

    Worst request.... F*in CHICKEN DANCE. God I hate that stupid song, but it seeme like every company party has some morons who can't live without the damn thing.:spit: