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(how) do you tell people they suck?

PostPosted: Thu Sep 08, 2005 5:22 am
by jaybee
Having played blues exclusively for the last 5 years I recently joined a cover band, replacing their lead guitar player, who left because of “other interests”.

After 5 rehearsals I am having serious second guesses

First of all about myself:

1 - I still don’t know the songs, I can play them - with my ‘cheat sheet’ - but it seems to be very hard for me to memorize them, probably because
2 - I don’t “feel” (most of) the songs
3 - I asked them if they wanted note for note reproductions, since that is one thing I won’t do. “NO, we play our own version of the songs” – up till now I’ve had at least 6 times (in 5 rehearsals) where the keyboard player starts “but that’s not like on the CD, he does ‘deedeedee-dwah-dooh’ and you go…” _ I am getting tempted to tell him to put on the cd then, since I have no intention to learn songs note for note and no time to even if I wanted to (which I told them up front, even BEFORE I went to the audition)


and about the band

4 – singing is off key A LOT (I know, I am not Pavarotti either, but…) by both singers, and neither of them is displaying a lot of charisma (may change once they are out of rehearsal and on stage, but I have my doubts, especially about the girl
5 – NO DYNAMICS – every song starts full blast and goes on full blast till it ends, PERIOD – I tried to introduce them to dynamics, having them play softer while backing singer, going a bit louder in instrumental passages and full tilt during solo’s, but that lasted about half a tune
6 – tempo is wobbly to say the least – I have been blessed with VERY solid rhythm sections the last couple of years, but yesterday’s rehearsal it was RIDICULOUS
7 - NOTHING is happening, we’re just reproducing the same thing again and again

now they have ONE gig lined up for next month, so I’ll play that one, but do I tell them I’m quitting before or after the gig and more importantly do I tell them WHY – or do I make up some excuse

RE: (how) do you tell people they suck?

PostPosted: Thu Sep 08, 2005 5:52 am
by stumblin
Jaybee,
If I was in your shoes right now, I'd quit before the gig. There's no point going on with what sounds like a complete waste of your time.

RE: (how) do you tell people they suck?

PostPosted: Thu Sep 08, 2005 6:18 am
by grady
Yep,,,,you don't wanna gout and gig with a band like THAT.

Trust me on this one Dude,,,,BAIL !!!

Now !!!

Before it's too late and someone you know sees you playing with this bunch of morons.

RE: (how) do you tell people they suck?

PostPosted: Thu Sep 08, 2005 10:56 am
by maxx england
[updated:LAST EDITED ON Sep-08-05 AT 06:57 AM (EST)]Pack in early, give them a chance to find someone else and save yourself a big bag of stress. As for how you phrase it, difficult. Perhaps you just have to say sorry, just not where my head is at, wish you luck etc.

P.S.

What "other interests" made the 1st guitar player leave? Sanity? Self respect?

RE: (how) do you tell people they suck?

PostPosted: Thu Sep 08, 2005 2:40 pm
by gcd revue
Last year, I found myself in the unenviable position of having to "fire" a band member. What was worse, he's a good personal friend. Ended up taking him out for lunch, outlining the reasons, then buying him a beer. You might show up to the next "rehearsal" (PERFECT practice makes perfect -- you don't practice mediocrity) with a case of beer, and a list of suggestions. Make your announcement at that time. If you have to shoot your own dog, don't farm it out, and don't put it off.

Semper fi,

RE: (how) do you tell people they suck?

PostPosted: Thu Sep 08, 2005 3:24 pm
by watertore
Hi jaybee: I too, would leave the band now. I would simply tell the truth- it just isn't your thing. If they push as to why, I would stick to this, thank them for the opportunity, and leave graciously. Good Luck! walter

RE: (how) do you tell people they suck?

PostPosted: Thu Sep 08, 2005 5:27 pm
by houndog
JB,
they are not musicians, they may act,walk and smell like musos but they ain't.

The loud practice is a clue, they are trying to feed off the songs energy without understanding how to create it.

Leave gracefully, you are likely to meet some of them again in another setting.

adios,
Lovat

RE: (how) do you tell people they suck?

PostPosted: Fri Sep 09, 2005 5:22 pm
by jaybee
[updated:LAST EDITED ON Sep-09-05 AT 05:08 PM (EST)]thx for the input guys, I guess I have time until next Tuesday to come up with "unoffensive" phrasing... (NOT my forte, I'll tell you that for free)

but, uh... I think I should have named the thread something else, of course I know enough not to tell people they suck, I was actually looking for ways to quit graciously WITHOUT doing so.
it's been done to me and boy, are those guys in my "bad book", something they felt a week after telling me "you can't play" - when my "replacement" (the bass player's friend and reason why I couldn't play all of a sudden in the first place) blew his amp and they came over to my place to ask me if they could borrow mine and all they got was "well, I guess YOU can't play EITHER now, can you?"...

I guess my real problem is I don't want to hurt their feelings, otherwise it would be easy: be blunt about it and quit. But although I've only been with them for a very short time, and they're not friends yet, they are nice people and I don't want to be an @$$hole and spoil their fun.

RE: (how) do you tell people they suck?

PostPosted: Sat Sep 10, 2005 1:43 pm
by maxx england
>
>I guess my real problem is I don't want to hurt their
>feelings, otherwise it would be easy: be blunt about it and
>quit. But although I've only been with them for a very short
>time, and they're not friends yet, they are nice people and
>I don't want to be an @$$hole and spoil their fun.


The thing is, we all, whatever style of music we have, play ultimately for the pleasure of it. These people you have been trying to work with have their own path, and you would not wish to destroy their enjoyment by dragging them in your direction; so I don't think they would want to hurt your feelings either. Part on the best terms you can, you never know when the grapevine will work in your favour.

RE: (how) do you tell people they suck?

PostPosted: Tue Sep 13, 2005 8:54 pm
by jaybee
well... the singer solved my problem, after rehearsal today, she started to air some thoughts about me to the rest of the band, while I was standing right beside her... it took about 3 minutes (I was packing my gear) before I stopped her by telling her she was welcome to go and do it all by herself, packed up and left. At first I said I'd do next months gig, but I just mailed them that I didn't think this was a good idea - I don't want to work in this atmosphere

RE: (how) do you tell people they suck?

PostPosted: Tue Sep 13, 2005 10:11 pm
by nizer
Oh well jaybee, just glad it's over I guess. It's a rotten thing to go through. Try not to take it personally - these things can be discouraging but I'm sure you will find some players closer to your tastes. Good for you for caring that much about the music you love.

RE: (how) do you tell people they suck?

PostPosted: Wed Sep 14, 2005 12:34 am
by savage
the important thing is that YOU tried to be good about it, regardless of how they acted. It shows character when you can be professional even when you're uncomfortable. Glad to hear its over. Leavin a band is always more trouble then gettin into one.

RE: (how) do you tell people they suck?

PostPosted: Fri Sep 16, 2005 8:57 pm
by el grande
[updated:LAST EDITED ON Sep-16-05 AT 05:01 PM (EST)]I would leave before the gig. No matter how good you are. The other members of the band will only bring you down. The audience will remember you by that gig probably and if all is bad then so are you.
You could tell them that it's too early to perform already. It's better to rehearse longer and do an opening gig that's good. Since a good impression isn't hard to forget but a band name is something you drag along much longer.
I was in a few bands that didn't work with dynamics and played everything loud and heavy. As a singer that's evne more anoying. And the dynamics is what it's all about. It's the only way to draw an audience atention. If ever I should have to look for another band that I have only one rule. No dynmics and a band that rehearses real loud = a no go for me.

RE: (how) do you tell people they suck?

PostPosted: Sun Sep 18, 2005 2:41 am
by jaybee
[updated:LAST EDITED ON Sep-17-05 AT 10:41 PM (EST)]well... the singer solved my problem, after rehearsal she started to air some thoughts about me to the rest of the band as if I wasn't there, while I was standing right beside her... I stopped her by telling her in the friendliest way possible she was welcome to go and do it all by herself, packed up and left.

RE: (how) do you tell people they suck?

PostPosted: Tue Sep 20, 2005 5:34 pm
by chick french
"(how) do you tell people they suck?"

people usually just throw beer bottles at me and say something about a sunny beach.