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You know your band is on the right track when ...

Discussion in 'Bass Humor & Gig Stories [BG]' started by el murdoque, Mar 7, 2017.

  1. el murdoque

    el murdoque

    Mar 10, 2013
    A friend and colleague of mine moved to my area a while back. He plays guitar and sings a bit. My other colleague is a drummer, so we decided to do something with that.

    Another friend of ours, one of the best guitarists in the entire area joined in and we started practicing. All of us have been in bands that did rock cover (the area is quite saturated with those) so we wanted to try something different: We tried to get as close to reggae as you can get with a band full of white Germans that played rock for the major part of their lives in a place where organs and horns do not exist outside of churches.
    We found a female singer that migrated from Zimbabwe who has never been in a band, but some experience singing gospel.

    Fast forward to the point where 20 songs are nailed down and the band is ready to hit a stage. First concert. The guitarist is well known because he's good and played in a few bands, he's also the main FOH guy around here, so he posts the gig on his Facebook and lots of people look forward to it. The drummer has had a terrible autoimmune disease a couple of years back and he's not fully recovered, but on an electric drum he can nail down a groove as if he's in the best of health. He's also a well known guy in the local community and this was his first appearance on stage for 5 years. Apart from that, the venue we played had two posters up anouncing the gig. No local newspaper, no flyers, nothing else to tell people about that concert. We get to the place and start rigging up, do a small soundcheck and go get something to eat before the gig. When we came back the place was packed (mind, it holds only about 200 people).
    The sound on stage was as terrible as it can get. The walls and roof are more tent than wall and don't reflect bass. I had to stand right in front of my amp and basically, playing blind. I could make out the bassdrum and snare, but not much else of the drumkit, while the rhythm guitar amp was pointed straight at my ear. The singers also struggled to hear themselves.
    We, simply put, were performing not to our best.
    The crowd went wild nonetheless.
    We played another gig shortly after that and apart from an announcement on Stage that evening, absolutely nothing was done to spread the word, the second venue is even smaller and the results were about the same. Then winter came and in this area, basically everything goes into hibernation until spring arrives.

    And now we get to the weird bit. This area has only a few opportunities to play live and it usually is really hard to book a gig. None of us did anything so far of our own accord, but we just got our 9th gig booked for the upcoming season.
    It is getting to the point where members find it hard to make room in their busy lifeplans to get concerts in, this is a hobby for all of us.

    It seems like there was a huge gap no one noticed before and we stepped right in.

    I just wanted to share a positive experience to the general topic of booking gigs, since i always felt getting gigs for small local bands is getting harder by the year.
  2. two fingers

    two fingers Opinionated blowhard. But not mad about it. Gold Supporting Member

    Feb 7, 2005
    Eastern NC USA
  3. RSBBass


    Jun 11, 2011
    Good for you.
  4. What planet is this??! Glad you guys are well recieved!
    I hope it keeps being great for you!
  5. BassCliff


    May 17, 2012
    So. Cal.

    You found a niche, filled it, and it's paying off. Whether by design or blind luck, you're on to something. Well done! Sometimes you just have to try something new, step out in faith, and hope for the best. The cool thing about music, and life in general, is if you try something and it doesn't work, you can always try something else! Nice job! :)

    Thank you for your indulgence,

  6. ONYX


    Apr 14, 2000
    Cool story!

    I was told long ago that you'll find what you're looking for when you're not looking for it.
  7. Congrats, it sounds like you are having fun!

    Twenty years ago I received a call from a singer. He had lined up some dates for a doo-wop/oldies band, would my (guitarist) brother and I want to pull together a backing band? Um, well...

    We had been playing in bands together since the mid 1970s, in that time we'd played rock, country-rock, pop, country and light jazz. Doo-wop and oldies never had crossed our minds. We were not opposed to the idea, but we never thought that we'd get caught up in it. First of all, it was weird having gigs before we had a band, but this guy was fairly well known. We had three months to throw a band together, polish it up and play our first gig.

    That band ended up being pretty successful in the region and lasted nearly ten years. Sometimes you find a niche that you never even considered and it just works.

    It sounds like you guys have found an need and are filling it well. Good job.
  8. el murdoque

    el murdoque

    Mar 10, 2013
    Yeah, i got the same feeling.

    With the e-drums (no minimal volume dictated by the drumkit) and our selection of songs, it is quite possible to play anywhere.
    GKon and viper4000 like this.
  9. LT131


    Jan 25, 2015
    Deep South
    Blond Dreads?
    LowActionHero likes this.
  10. hrodbert696

    hrodbert696 Moderator Staff Member

    Ok I am now officially seething with jealousy. We should all be so lucky. Congratulations!
  11. lbbc

    lbbc Supporting Member

    Sep 25, 2007
    Seaford , DE
    That's awesome.... congratulations!!
  12. Interceptor


    Mar 29, 2005
    Madison, WI
    That's a great and inspirational story!

    Thank you for writing it.
  13. Spidey2112


    Aug 3, 2016
    So true, mi amigo...
  14. JRA

    JRA my words = opinion Supporting Member

    nice story! sounds like you did the right thing (market niche) and got lucky to boot! i love when that happens.

    good luck in the coming months = hope you can fit this success into your busy schedules! :thumbsup:
  15. Oddly


    Jan 17, 2014
    Dublin, Ireland.
    Inspiring to hear.
    Congratulations on what sounds like a really great situation.
    I hope you guys get many years of success.
  16. The Deep End

    The Deep End Supporting Member

    Jul 24, 2013
    New York City
    Interesting how all the gears just fell into place (friend moves to area, other friends gather). One can try, try, try to make something happen ... better when the universe takes over.
  17. Well done!! Do you play Master Blaster by Stevie Wonder? Or any Police or Bob Marley tunes?
  18. el murdoque

    el murdoque

    Mar 10, 2013
    Two of our Members used to play in a band that did lots of police and the band still exists, so we left police out. I can't say I complain about that because for some reason, I struggle with lots of Sting's basslines. We have Stir It Up and Could You Be Loved, and other well known songs boiled down to reggae (Sex On Fire by Kings Of Leon and Get Lucky by Daft Punk work exceptionally well, just to name some examples).

    Master Blaster is something i could suggest, but i fear that our drummer might have trouble with the 4 to the floor bassdrum pattern, since he's not fully recovered yet.

    Haha, by the way - we just got got a request for gig 10.
    Right now, all of us are just shaking our heads in disbelief.
    GKon and Groove Doctor like this.
  19. Was UB40 big over there?? Their version of Red Red Wine was huge in Oz, as well as It Must Be Love by Madness. One Love by Bob is a real well known classic too. Eric Claptons Knockin on Heavens Door, and Brown Eyed Girl might also work too.

    I would so come & see you guys if you were local. :bassist:
    el murdoque likes this.
  20. GKon

    GKon Supporting Member, Boom-Chicka-Boom

    Feb 17, 2013
    Albuquerque, NM
    That is an awesome outcome! I'm very happy for you and your Banda!
  21. Primary

    Primary TB Assistant

    Here are some related products that TB members are talking about. Clicking on a product will take you to TB’s partner, Primary, where you can find links to TB discussions about these products.

    Apr 14, 2021

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