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Band Practice- Love It or Hate It

  • Love It

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  • Hate It

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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Do you guys in bands have regular practices or do you just pick songs, learn them individually, go over them once as a group and start giging with them?

I myself enjoy practice! It's a night with the boys having fun playing your favorite music. My dilemma is, I am not naturally good and have to work hard at the guitar, so I need to practice, especially as a group because it is so different live with a band then it is playing along to a cd or back track. We just gigged last Friday and it was probably our best performance ever, (judging by the crowd reaction). My thoughts after the gig was, "Man, we could get this reaction all the time if we practiced more"!

I am trying to talk the guys to get together at least once a month to further improve our capabilities. Sounds reasonable doesn't it? SO far, not to them? They just want to learn the songs individually and go for it. Let me tell you, we are not proffesional musicians. We're pretty good........but not that good.

I'm a little bummed out about it and may have to make the decision of quitting due to the fact that I don't feel comfortable playing in front of people if I don't feel I am at my best.

Anyways, I was interested in hearing about the practice routines of players here?
 

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I hate practices. At first, when I joined the band they were necessary, but now they are just a waste of time. No-one learns on their own, then come to rehearsal to socialize and drink. I always have songs learned and charted out in case anyone else has problems remembering. We had our first rehearsal 3 weeks ago for the first time in about 3 months and it was a complete waste of time. Certain members were too drunk to get through the easiest of tunes.

I bailed on practice after that. Told them if they wanted to throw new songs in we could listen to them at home and try them at a gig. Turns out, they came to our gig last week knowing the songs.

With a new band or an original project rehearsals are neccessary and quite fun, but an established cover band should be able to show up at a gig a rip through 4 or 5 new tunes.
 

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Rehearsal is a part of the process.

Yes everybody should show up knowing their parts, but the reality is that not everyone has the ears to do that effectively. Also it takes a couple of rehearsals together as a band to get things tight and smooth at least to the point of being ready to try on stage.
Nobody drinks or gets high at our rehearsals.


I love band practice.




It's a part of the whole picture.
 

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love it. its part of growing as a band, learning how to play together, writing, tightening up material, bonding as bandmates, enjoying the chemistry created in a band setting, working out new ideas (musically, stage show, etc), etc.

I'd quit a band I didn't enjoy rehearsing with. Whats the point if you don't enjoy it. It should be something to look forward to.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
james on bass said:
I hate practices. At first, when I joined the band they were necessary, but now they are just a waste of time. No-one learns on their own, then come to rehearsal to socialize and drink. I always have songs learned and charted out in case anyone else has problems remembering. We had our first rehearsal 3 weeks ago for the first time in about 3 months and it was a complete waste of time. Certain members were too drunk to get through the easiest of tunes.

I bailed on practice after that. Told them if they wanted to throw new songs in we could listen to them at home and try them at a gig. Turns out, they came to our gig last week knowing the songs.

With a new band or an original project rehearsals are neccessary and quite fun, but an established cover band should be able to show up at a gig a rip through 4 or 5 new tunes.
Wow, is this how all you bass players think? Our bass player is the biggest problem when it comes to practice. He has the exact same attitude as you.
Not to diminish how important bass is to a band, but maybe bass is simpler then guitar and therefore not as much practice is necessary? None

Hey this leads me to a joke, what do you throw to your bass player when you see him drowning in a lake?........................................His amp!

I agree with everyone else here. Practice is important and creates bonds between bandmates. You only get better as a group by practicing. We don't get drunk at practice. We all have to work the next day. We do have a couple beers though.
 

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ne1roc said:
Wow, is this how all you bass players think? Our bass player is the biggest problem when it comes to practice. He has the exact same attitude as you.
Not to diminish how important bass is to a band, but maybe bass is simpler then guitar and therefore not as much practice is necessary? None

Hey this leads me to a joke, what do you throw to your bass player when you see him drowning in a lake?........................................His amp!

I agree with everyone else here. Practice is important and creates bonds between bandmates. You only get better as a group by practicing. We don't get drunk at practice. We all have to work the next day. We do have a couple beers though.
It's a damn fine thing you put that smiley in there or I'd be driving up there to pay you a little visit - oh dammit, my car is still in the shop. :tongue:

I totally agree and came off a bit harsh. We are a cover band that puts on a good show, but mostly we play our music very well. I find the comraderie and fun in the gig nights - playing as well as set-up, tear-down and in-between sets.
If one of the members wants to have a band practice to socialize and basically get so drunk he can barely function, did why did I bother learning and charting out the songs? I couldv'e just showed up with a box of beer which is a lot lighter than my gear.
 

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I like rehearsals as long as they have a purpose. Well, I guess getting together to get drunk could somehow be considered a purpose and in the right context that's fine as long as everyone involved is agreed. I have had jams with old buddies where there is no intention of ever playing out, just playing through tunes and having a good time. That said, if some of the guys are drunk enough that they can't play the songs it definitely takes away from the enjoyment.

What I really don't like are rehearsals that are so infrequent that you spend most of the time trying to remember the songs you've had down before. That and rehearsals right before a gig where bandmates decide it's time to change the arrangements of songs you've played dozens of times before. Hopefully practicing as a group will help you sound better as a group in ways that learning parts individually can't.
 

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love band practice. We do it one to two times a week. We also work on individual stuff on our own time, but group practice is a great time to work on fine tuning or "putting our own twist" on some of the covers. It's also a great time work start working on the originals.
 

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I love it too. We do it once a week and it,s like a boy's night out. Some people do bowling or poker , for me it,s the band.
 

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Same as most here. I love band practice. Actually it's more like, I love playing music, period. For us, rehearsals give the band a chance to work on new songs, discuss arrangements, talk about stuff we experienced on the last gig, etc. We do it once a week unless we're playing that weekend. We also only schedule 2 hours each time (for playing), right now 7-9pm Tuesdays. Which forces us to really make use of those 2 hours for practicing. Whatever socializing we want to do is done after, when we sit down for wings or pizza and beer. And since it's on a weekday, we normally don't go past 10pm.
I remember playing in a band where we got hammered everytime we got together. Maybe that's the reason we never got anywhere with that band.
 

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I really enjoy getting together and working through material, whether it's something new, tightening up a passage, or just jamming through a completely new approach to an old favourite.

Tonight, for example, our lead singer/rythym player can't make it. I'm looking forward to it because there's no structure - the rest of us can just jam around and see what happens. I'll get a lot of sonic space in the mix too so I can just let loose.
 

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Chito said:
Same as most here. I love band practice. Actually it's more like, I love playing music, period. For us, rehearsals give the band a chance to work on new songs, discuss arrangements, talk about stuff we experienced on the last gig, etc. We do it once a week unless we're playing that weekend. We also only schedule 2 hours each time (for playing), right now 7-9pm Tuesdays. Which forces us to really make use of those 2 hours for practicing. Whatever socializing we want to do is done after, when we sit down for wings or pizza and beer. And since it's on a weekday, we normally don't go past 10pm.
I remember playing in a band where we got hammered everytime we got together. Maybe that's the reason we never got anywhere with that band.
I agree with the short practice time schedule - 2 to 3 hours is enough and effective.

I had a band that used to rehearse for 2 hours in the morning during the week, and we always got a lot accomplished.
 

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Dat's IT!!

For our band, we've practice once a week for 2 months now. Last week our lead guitz player didn't show up for practice claiming he knew our line-up front to back. We feel he's one who needs the:wave: most work, but who's to judge? I love band practice as it gives us a chance to go full tilt.
 

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...this WAS a hot button issue for me. i spent far too many years working with players who hate to rehearse. it just begs the question, if you don't enjoy playing and, especially, playing with other musicians, why do you own an instrument? do you think successful artists achieved their goals by NOT rehearsing?

fortunately i now work ONLY with musicians who are as driven to play as i am. our rehearsals go for 7-8 hours at a stretch, often with no breaks. trust me, there will be no going back. and, yeah, we drink and get high - it gets the creative juices flowing - but with long hours like that, you quickly learn to pace yourself. i do 98% of the lead vocals, and if i'm going to sing for eight hours straight, moderation is crucial.

on the other hand, if you are a "hobbyist" (and there is absolutely nothing wrong with that!), rehearsing is no biggie. i guess its important to make that distinction in this discussion.

-dh
 

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david henman said:
...this WAS a hot button issue for me. i spent far too many years working with players who hate to rehearse. it just begs the question, if you don't enjoy playing and, especially, playing with other musicians, why do you own an instrument? do you think successful artists achieved their goals by NOT rehearsing?

fortunately i now work ONLY with musicians who are as driven to play as i am. our rehearsals go for 7-8 hours at a stretch, often with no breaks. trust me, there will be no going back.

on the other hand, if you are a "hobbyist" (and there is absolutely nothing wrong with that!), rehearsing is no biggie. i guess its important to make that distinction in this discussion.

-dh

Wow, 7 ~ 8 hours? How often?


Personally I find that if everyone is reasonably prepared 2 hours is a functional duration. More than that and it becomes tedious. Of course we do all have day jobs.


And if people AREN't reasonably prepared, I'm not eager to spend 7 ~ 8 hours teaching them their parts.

We do one or two rehearsals a week lasting around 2 hours, unless we're doing back to back weekends, in which case we don't rehearse between them.
 

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Milkman said:
Wow, 7 ~ 8 hours? How often?
Personally I find that if everyone is reasonably prepared 2 hours is a functional duration. More than that and it becomes tedious. Of course we do all have day jobs.
And if people AREN't reasonably prepared, I'm not eager to spend 7 ~ 8 hours teaching them their parts.
We do one or two rehearsals a week lasting around 2 hours, unless we're doing back to back weekends, in which case we don't rehearse between them.
...we rehearse as often as humanly possible, given that we all have day jobs. on non-gigging weekends that means friday night, saturday and sunday (monday, too, if its a long weeekend).

as well, we always try and rehearse the night before a gig. most singers hate that, but it works for me, gets my voice warmed up.

we spend very little time rehearsing cover songs, however.

-dh
 

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david henman said:
...we rehearse as often as humanly possible, given that we all have day jobs. on non-gigging weekends that means friday night, saturday and sunday (monday, too, if its a long weeekend).

as well, we always try and rehearse the night before a gig. most singers hate that, but it works for me, gets my voice warmed up.

we spend very little time rehearsing cover songs, however.

-dh


LOL, not family men I guess.

Good for you though. For me, there comes a point where rehearsing becomes counterproductive. I never rehearse the night before a gig. I sing some tough covers and it's a matter of endurance to an extent.


I should add that I often spend hours at home getting my parts down. I'm talking about the "final assembly" process for the tunes.


Clearly, different approaches work for different bands and players.


One key thing for me, is that although it is a little time out from the family, it's not a party. We don't drink or get high at rehearsals at all. That must be factored when considering how long a rehearsal takes.
 

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I'm sure you guy's all have someone like me in your band,you know the one that is alway's itching to jam.I absolutly love jamming.Alway's trying to rally the troop's and get them to the practice space,hell I even lure them with boxes of beer!I like going through the set's tring to see just how much I can cut loose with out screwing up.Anyone else have a "no one allowed to watch"rule?

I have nothing against bass player's but since I see there is already one joke here about them here's mine.
How do you save a drowning Bass player?......Take your foot off his head!!!omg! mabe I should be a stand up comic instead if a musician!!!!

Take Care
Aaron:DevilGuitar:
 

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aaron said:
I'm sure you guy's all have someone like me in your band,you know the one that is alway's itching to jam.I absolutly love jamming.Alway's trying to rally the troop's and get them to the practice space,hell I even lure them with boxes of beer!I like going through the set's tring to see just how much I can cut loose with out screwing up.Anyone else have a "no one allowed to watch"rule?
...we must be soul brothers! i love jamming (assuming that its not mindless, and doesn't involve 12-bar blues).

as to your question, we encourage "watching". our girlfriends never miss a rehearsal and, yes, they too hang in for 7-8 hours. on saturdays we break around 7:00 pm for a huge feast.

-dh
 

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Milkman said:
LOL, not family men I guess.
Good for you though. For me, there comes a point where rehearsing becomes counterproductive. I never rehearse the night before a gig. I sing some tough covers and it's a matter of endurance to an extent.
I should add that I often spend hours at home getting my parts down. I'm talking about the "final assembly" process for the tunes.
Clearly, different approaches work for different bands and players.
One key thing for me, is that although it is a little time out from the family, it's not a party. We don't drink or get high at rehearsals at all. That must be factored when considering how long a rehearsal takes.

...for my band, its all of the above: serious work, a party, a social event, a chance to bond. but you're right - we're not family men - the kids have grown up and have kids of their own.

-dh
 
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