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Worth rehearsing w/only bass, drums and sax?

Discussion in 'Band Management [BG]' started by tspallone, Nov 3, 2013.

  1. tspallone


    Oct 13, 2011
    Nanuet, NY
    I play in a smooth jazz quartet (Guitar, Bass, Drums and Sax). The guitar player (BL) is off on holiday for 3 weeks and suggests that the rest get together while he's gone.

    I'm not looking to get out of anything, mind you but, I don't see much point to this? The BL arranges songs because, he's the main instrument for rythm and lead most of the time with the sax trown in for good measure.

    I just don't see a value to me laying down the bass line with the drummer keeping a beat and we wait for when the sax comes in to play some sort of line and then stops and leaves the bass and drums to play out the rest of the song? I can practice this stuff on my own. I feel that rehearsal is for the whole band to "put it together", not to practice.

    Agree? Disagree? Thoughts?

    Tell me.
  2. Yes, I Totally Agree 100%!!!

    EDIT: With that said - but, it might be fun to jam. :)
  3. Maybe this is your big opportunity to write?
  4. Depends.

    If you three are pretty solid, it's probably a waste of time. If you aren't that together, then it could be quite useful.
  5. aprod


    Mar 11, 2008
    I have been in a similar situation and found it was well worth the time to rehearse without various members present. You can really stretch out. Play the melody to cover the guitar. If the drummer's gone work on tempo and play around with the rhythm. I thought it was a waste of time initially but each configuration of players had its own dynamics and feel and I had a great time.
  6. sandmangeck


    Jul 2, 2007
  7. ChrisB2

    ChrisB2 Bass... in your fass

    Feb 27, 2008
    TalkBass > Off Topic
    I agree with you. I've gotten to the point that I refuse to rehearse without the entire band, or at least the lead instruments, lead vocals, and drums.

    Total waste of time...
  8. Bassist4Eris

    Bassist4Eris Frat-Pack Sympathizer

    +1. In my band, the drummer and I rehearse every Tuesday. The keyboard player said from the outset he will only commit to every other Tuesday. And the guitarist is a pro recording engineer who relies on sessions to pay his rent. If he has to book one on a Tuesday, guess what? And we've learned that this is actually an advantage, to be able to rehearse in all of these different configurations. We are able to focus on different things and correct problems and basically tighten up. Of course, getting all four of us in a room relatively regularly is also important, but that's not what we're talking about here. So, is there value in getting together without your guitarist? Entirely possible, but I guess that's up to you to decide. One thing you might consider is giving your sax player the time off and just getting together with your drummer. My drummer and I find this very productive.
  9. nojj

    nojj Guest

    May 20, 2013
    IMO rehearsing w/o a full compliment is (generally) pointless.
    That said, we've had occasion to have to rehearse sans gtr,
    leaving myself, the drummer, and singer.
    It got....interesting.
    The singer had a problem because the material "didn't sound the same"
    Well.....yeah. I'm doing the bass parts plus trying to carry gtr at the same time.

    My 3pc we've taken to doing a quasi-jam/rehearse thing,
    using my son on drums because our regular drummer has been getting crushed at work.
    Thus far it's been working out splendidly.

    We're talking about maybe bringing him in to sit in on some gigs.
    (not the ones he subs for)
    and nailing down the mechanics contingent in town.
    Both he & my gtr player are techs, and hold jobs as head mechanics at their respective facilities.
    Pretty good fan base.
  10. kohntarkosz

    kohntarkosz Banned

    Oct 29, 2013
    Edinburgh - Scotland
    Gives you a chance to get those Morphine covers up to scratch!
  11. Gwardar

    Gwardar Supporting Member

    Yeah, really depends.

    If you think that you need the rehearsal more than the absent people than yes. If it's the other way around than no. You probably already have a good feel about which way this is.

    I personally don't rehearse with incomplete setup anymore. You get tight and then have to do it all over again with the rest of the band. Unfortunately this can kill the songs or at least suck some fun out of playing them.
  12. Shakin-Slim


    Jul 23, 2009
    Tokyo, Japan
    Give the sax player a chance to stretch out. Screw the arrangements for a while.
  13. nojj

    nojj Guest

    May 20, 2013
    Most of the sax players I had to work with around here don't know when to shut the hell up.
    Worse than harp players............
  14. Zooberwerx

    Zooberwerx Gold Supporting Member

    Dec 21, 2002
    Virginia Beach, VA
    Gives everybody the chance to stretch out. Think of it as a "sectional" between you and the drummer.

  15. Disagree

    You can learn a lot by working out with fewer instruments

    It's good to also feel and hear if the drums and bass actually sound any good together , no where for any one to hide

    Plus a bit of improvisation shouldn't hurt either

  16. TreySonagras


    Aug 11, 2013
    Maybe it's a good chance to work up some stuff as a trio. Who says you have to work on his stuff while he's gone?
  17. Shakin-Slim


    Jul 23, 2009
    Tokyo, Japan
  18. Shakin-Slim


    Jul 23, 2009
    Tokyo, Japan
    Indeed again!
  19. Rehearsal is NEVER a waste of time. Never.
  20. ArtechnikA

    ArtechnikA I endorsed a check once... Gold Supporting Member

    Feb 24, 2013
    Go listen to John Klemmer's 'Touch' and tell me you can't make good music with bass, percussion, and sax. Or Clarence Clemons' 'Peacemaker.'

    OK - Touch and Barefoot Ballet ("Touch 2") had Dave Grusin keys - but still...

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