I need help..not with drumming, but 'being in a band'.

Armor of Light

Senior Member
I dabbled in drums years ago while (apparently) every person my age was a semi pro or a recording genius. Been playing pretty steadily for the last 5 years. I've been in "2" bands but auditioned for or joined/fell apart with a few, too. I'm baffled by the "band" thing so far. I play well...solid time. Tasteful. Not flashy but not boring.
I'll lay out a couple of situations and my reactions as simply as I can. My own kit has not left my house. Everybody has a kit, and expect me to play it. I don't think that's necessary...good intentions or not...NO other musician is expected to play just whatever somebody has. Why not the respect for drummers? 1 audition I WASN'T ALLOWED TO GO OFF THE DRUM RUG. 1 audition..the kit was BOLTED DOWN and was a 1960's kit with 1970's heads. I'm 6'4" and I'd like to use my own kit. Is it really too much to ask? Each time (and others) they act like I'm a douchebag for even noticing. "I can make any kit sound good" is what I've heard...maybe. But I don't want to. Do I really have to..is that the norm? Second scenario below:
 

Armor of Light

Senior Member
Just joined a new band. Was going great..I mean really well. Tight. Cover band. We auditioned a guitarist, and the direction changed immediately to an originals band. Everyone had success (except me) in the past..tons of songs..recordings. Cool. I've never even tried another persons originals...met the next week to go over 9 original songs. I figured it would take a couple of band rehearsals to develop a "great" drum part for each...so I played it cool but they know I'm a good drummer...just need more time? Bass player tried to help..but I took offense. So I got canned. I did apologize. My point is...the guitarist is a complete insanity case (judging from hate filled Facebook posts) and the bass player "is a great drummer" himself..but just a week before we were yukking it up and sounding good. I get frustrated with myself really. I think everyone but me would get a pass on having a 10 second rant every now and then. But...they don't know me and I don't know them real well. I need advice because I shouldve learned how to be a functional member of a band by now.
 

C.M. Jones

Well-known member
Let it go and start fresh somewhere else. You just referred to the guitarist as "a complete insanity case" and stated that the bass player's efforts to be helpful have offended you. In addition, they've canned you. Bad blood has been born. Don't try to reconcile. Just move on and start anew.

Part of being a musician means getting along with people. Do your best to receive (and provide) all opinions and guidance in as constructive a manner as you can. Don't take matters too personally. Music is a business. Treat others as professionals, and they'll generally return the favor.

By your own description, you seem more comfortable in a cover band. Go find a new one. Don't dwell on your recent hardships. Focus on drumming and being a good bandmate. The rest will fall into place.
 
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Armor of Light

Senior Member
Let it go and start fresh somewhere else. You just referred to the guitarist as "a complete insanity case" and stated that the bass player's efforts to be helpful have offended you. In addition, they've canned you. Bad blood has been born. Don't try to reconcile. Just move on and start anew.

Part of being a musician means getting along with people. Do you best to receive (and provide) all opinions and guidance in as constructive a manner as you can. Don't take matters too personally. Music is a business. Treat others as professionals, and they'll generally return the favor.

By your own description, you seem more comfortable in a cover band. Go find a new one. Don't dwell on your recent hardships. Focus on drumming and being a good bandmate. The rest will fall into place.
Thank You. I quite liked the originals, and up until this AM..was very pleased with my parts and they were tight. Not hard songs..My people skills used to be good and I'm not sure when I lost them. What about the "my own drums" thing? I'm I a snowflake on that?
 

C.M. Jones

Well-known member
Thank You. I quite liked the originals, and up until this AM..was very pleased with my parts and they were tight. Not hard songs.. My people skills used to be good and I'm not sure when I lost them. What about the "my own drums" thing? I'm I a snowflake on that?
I've never completed an audition on someone else's kit. Would I be willing to? It would depend on the circumstances. If it were a kit I thought might impede my ability to perform to my maximum potential, I might have reservations. Otherwise, I'd likely just go along with it. If nothing else, it would spare me the trouble of transporting my own gear. Only you can establish your own standards, but flexibility is a good quality for a drummer to possess.

Don't take everything as a personal slight or as an unfair limitation. Roll with it, man. You're frustrated right now. You feel knocked down. Stand up and find a new band. Soon enough, your current letdown won't even matter. Just get back to drumming, and hold your head up high.
 

Rotarded

Senior Member
Just a different perspective on the auditioning, and on someone else's kit. Bear in mind that you are auditioning them, as well as they you. I have auditioned enough to understand that much of the audition is about who you are. Does your personality fit in with the rest of the band? Does your ego threaten anyone else's? Drama is what kills more bands than any other factor. It was apparent to me , at the audition described below, that after 5 minutes of arrival that the guitarist/singer was a Diva, with an ego that had it's own zip code.

As far as the kit goes, one of the most eye opening auditions I had was conducted on a kit consisting of a Stagg bass drum, CB700 snare, and Sabian B8 high hats. No toms, no crash or ride. How well do you lock in with the bass player? You don't need your own kit tuned to your liking to demonstrate your ability to do that. I also immediately recognized by the sparse kit, that they wanted to feel the pocket. It was a blues band and they said I was the first drummer who understood playing behind the beat when the feel of the song called for it.

I was offered this gig (actually twice), but passed on it.
 
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LarryJ

Member
I would do the audition on their kit. The band is either good musicians who understand your situation and will make allowances for it. If not, you probably don't want to play with them anyway. As Rotarded said, you are auditioning them too.

I once went to a jam session where the regular drummer was a no show. The house band asked me to sit in that night, using the house kit. The house kit had no cymbals, no bass drum pedal, and no snare. So I played three hours with brushes on a floor tom. Got the house band job.
 

NouveauCliche

Senior Member
Thank You. I quite liked the originals, and up until this AM..was very pleased with my parts and they were tight. Not hard songs..My people skills used to be good and I'm not sure when I lost them. What about the "my own drums" thing? I'm I a snowflake on that?
I love not having to haul my stuff around.

At my band's practice spot - there's this total junky black "DeRosa" set set up - and I just bring my own snare and I relishhhhh not having to move my stuff. Plus if I can make our tunes sound good on a set with heads that are made out of candy wrapper or whatever - then they'll sound even better on the real deal.
 

GOOSE72

Well-known member
Yeah I think you have some complicated dynamics and human emotions going on there. Might be best to step away and regroup.
 

Armor of Light

Senior Member
I love not having to haul my stuff around.

At my band's practice spot - there's this total junky black "DeRosa" set set up - and I just bring my own snare and I relishhhhh not having to move my stuff. Plus if I can make our tunes sound good on a set with heads that are made out of candy wrapper or whatever - then they'll sound even better on the real deal.
I'm coming around. I don't mind playing any kit...really...as long as I can take a few minutes and set it up without it being bolted down and told not to go off of the rug. I don't think I'm the A-hole on those points..
 

Hollywood Jim

Platinum Member
Armor of Light: What city do you live in? How do you find all of these nerdy musicians?
( One reason I want to know what city you live in, is I'd like to make sure I avoid that city. )

.
 

opentune

Platinum Member
I get frustrated with myself really. I think everyone but me would get a pass on having a 10 second rant every now and then. But...they don't know me and I don't know them real well. I need advice because I shouldve learned how to be a functional member of a band by now.
Sounds like you need to play it a little more cool and hold on to the fun factor. A '10 second rant' actually does not sound good for a new band member. Maybe after some months.
OK, they want you to use their kit, pretty reasonable, and maybe a positive - to not have to haul all your stuff to audition with a band you might not like anyway, or to keep hauling your stuff to their space. Just bring your cymbals, pedal, snare should suffice.
But you need adjustments to make, just like they do. They don't allow you to adjust things? ok that is your limit. Kindly inform them you cannot play said kit and the audition is over.... see you later. They would cave. If they don't , on the way out ask them if they can play their stringed instruments if the strap is insanely too short or too long.
 
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harryconway

Platinum Member
Well, sounds like you would not have been a "good fit" in either band. It's one thing to cover the musical requirements of being in a band .... and then it's something altogether different to get along personally. Just move on. Keep auditioning. Or maybe better ..... form up a band from scratch. That way, you're not the "new guy" bucking the pre-existing norm.
 

mikyok

Platinum Member
Just joined a new band. Was going great..I mean really well. Tight. Cover band. We auditioned a guitarist, and the direction changed immediately to an originals band.
That's why it went tits up. Went from having a bit of fun into playing rockstars. Alarm bells always start ringing for me then. I'm 36 and realise full well I'm far to old to make it and I have a face for radio :)

1 audition I WASN'T ALLOWED TO GO OFF THE DRUM RUG. 1 audition..the kit was BOLTED DOWN and was a 1960's kit with 1970's heads. I'm 6'4" and I'd like to use my own kit. Is it really too much to ask? Each time (and others) they act like I'm a douchebag for even noticing. "I can make any kit sound good" is what I've heard...maybe. But I don't want to. Do I really have to..is that the norm?
Look at it as a bullet dodged, they sound like control freaks so best avoided. It saves confrontation in the long run. On the plus side if there's a kit to practice on and you only need snare/cymbals/pedal then go for it, that's a bonus and keep your kit for gigging.

I'm guessing these bands don't gig much....can't imagine why!

My people skills used to be good and I'm not sure when I lost them.
Dude, if you're joining a band it's a 2 way street, you have to be cool with them as much as they have to be cool with you. Life is too short to suffer fools gladly.

When dealing with other musicians you'll encounter some serious weapons of mass destruction.
 

Armor of Light

Senior Member
Well, sounds like you would not have been a "good fit" in either band. It's one thing to cover the musical requirements of being in a band .... and then it's something altogether different to get along personally. Just move on. Keep auditioning. Or maybe better ..... form up a band from scratch. That way, you're not the "new guy" bucking the pre-existing norm.
Possibly.

The other post asked where I am located. I'm in West Michigan..
Currently filled with gentrified areas i/e craft beer and wine places; and dive bars. Not much in between. There might be room for an originals band in the classic rock style (Greta Van Fleet, etc..) so I'd like to try that maybe. That'd be my wheelhouse.

I see some originals bands around, but I don't 'get' the music at all. Neckbeards and washboards and fiddles and bongos.
 
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Armor of Light

Senior Member
That's why it went tits up. Went from having a bit of fun into playing rockstars. Alarm bells always start ringing for me then. I'm 36 and realise full well I'm far to old to make it and I have a face for radio :)



Look at it as a bullet dodged, they sound like control freaks so best avoided. It saves confrontation in the long run. On the plus side if there's a kit to practice on and you only need snare/cymbals/pedal then go for it, that's a bonus and keep your kit for gigging.

I'm guessing these bands don't gig much....can't imagine why!



Dude, if you're joining a band it's a 2 way street, you have to be cool with them as much as they have to be cool with you. Life is too short to suffer fools gladly.

When dealing with other musicians you'll encounter some serious weapons of mass destruction.
Thank You. In retrospect...that is exactly how I perceive the events. That is why I became frustrated, and acted like a rock star! And got canned like a rock star..
 
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