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Postby rparker » February 10th, 2012, 3:38 pm

I'll try to make a long story short, I have two bass playing friends. One I jam with every couple of months and have mentioned on these boards quite a few times. This one is a different dude. I know him from playing Sr League baseball together. We have not played together since I was almost a total newbie. It's been a while.

So he emailed me a couple of weeks ago and we've exchanged a few emails since. Part of the conversation was about his band lost one of their two guitarists to a move out of town, but they had found a replacement and all was looking good. He sent me a copy of a cover song they did and recorded in their first take. It was pretty good once they figured out what each were doing, say 30 seconds in. I told him I thought it was impressive and that they sounded good. heck, it was a Stones classic, and you know I'm a sucker for Stones music.

The next thing I got was quite a surprise to me.

He emailed me and asked me if I'd like to come hang out with him and his band at their next rehersal this coming Monday. I accepted on the spot and hope my head allows me to attend. but I got thinking. Does this happen? Band members typically do not invite others along for practices, right? Especially when I know I've only met the other guys one time and never the new guitarist. My wife thought it was a bit strange as well. I'm not sure what to expect, but I certainly am looking forward to it.

Now, I want to do the right think. I'd rather make a safe mistake than a presumptuous one. I'm not bring my guitar and amp. I don't even want to call him and ask him. I'm going to assume not out of safety. If anything, just so that the new member of the band doesn't think I'm in any way, shape or form being auditioned.

What would you guys do in my shoes?
Roy

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Postby Alan Green » February 10th, 2012, 4:00 pm

Hmmm.

Take your guitar and some gear and wait for them to ask you to jam. They're bound to ask if you've got your gear with you at some stage.
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Postby cnev » February 10th, 2012, 5:03 pm

Your shoes are too big for me, but I don't know how well you know the guy etc. Personally and it's just me but I tend to be on the shy side I wouldn't bring my guitar or assume he wanted me to play...otherwise I would think he just would have asked, right? Why would he keep it a mystery, but since you have some history with him throw at least a guitar in the trunk just in case.

Then if he asks if you brought a guitar you say yes...oh what the heck bring the guitar and the 11 rack too.
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Postby TRGuitar » February 10th, 2012, 5:49 pm

TR in his best rock star voice .......... "If it were me I would bring my gear and keep it in the truck til I heard them play cause they might not be good enough for me". :lol: Seriously though, I'd bring it and keep it in the vehicle so if I were asked or invited ....... I could say, "Well as a matter of fact I got my gear in the car right now". Non presumtious and you can check them out first to make sure your not over your head in case they are looking to audition you, course you already heard them so you know what to expect. You need to bring your stuff just in case. Could be the start of something Roy!
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Postby Cat » February 11th, 2012, 12:34 am

The better you are, the less you follow. Live to set the pace. This is life...

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Postby s1120 » February 11th, 2012, 3:32 am

I would share the same thoughts, I would wonder whats up.. I would still pack somehting in the car just in case. Better to have it if you need it... and if you didnt... so you only blew the 5 min it took you to pack it in the car, and haul it out at home... win win. Or you can call the guy and ask if he needs you to bring anything...
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Postby NoteBoat » February 11th, 2012, 5:00 am

The thing is... you just MIGHT be auditioning!

There's a chance they have doubts about the new guitarist. Bring your gear, but leave it in the car. That way you're covered under any of the three scenarios that are most likely:

1. the bass player wants some feedback about the band, and after the rehearsal you'll have a beer or two and he'll get your opinion

2. he's curious about your progress and wants to jam a bit after the rehearsal

3. they're thinking a member might have to go, and you'll audition after the rehearsal is over.

If your gear is in the car, no big deal if it's #1 - you just leave it there. But you're prepared for either of the other two as well.
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Postby rparker » February 11th, 2012, 7:20 am

Thanks for the suggestions. all good and valid and all giving me food for thought.

TR, your Rock 'n Roll voice haunted my dreams. :lol: :lol: (J/K)

One wrench in the gears is that I am not really driving yet due to the meds thing. My wife or son will be driving me and then picking me up later.

I got BCC'd on an email from him to the group. A simple, "Is Monday practice still a go??" thing. I figure at this point asking if I should bring anything might be a non-presumptuous query. If anything, I'd like to sit and play unplugged to see if I could keep up. See what my head would allow me to do and the price I pay later that night. There's not only noise, but movement to deal with.

A funny story. One of my most embarrassing moments while learning this guitar thing.
He came over to the house one time to "jam". I did not know what this meant yet. So, when I started playing rhythm to whatever song it was and when he started playing lead , I stopped. I didn't know what the heck he was doing. I thought he just wanted to play or show me the proper technique, so I stopped and let him. He got a puzzled look on his face. After a couple more times he tried to explain this jamming thing, but it didn't sink in. Getting more and more embarrassing now. I think he gave up and we did the one at a time thing. I got sick right after that, and he got busy with his band by the time I've been able to do things. We never played again. About two years later, I learned what jamming actually was by my brother-in-law. Man, talk about embarassing. I did email him and told him about my blunder from that evening and we had a good laugh.
Roy

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Postby TRGuitar » February 11th, 2012, 7:36 am

When my son and I jam, we each just play stuff we feel like til the other joins in. It's easier than discussing it. You don't wanna play what the other guy is, you just don't join in. some times he won't give it up and I have to give in. :lol: The other night we were playing China Grove out of the blue. Never played it before. He was nailing the bass line perfectly. Been doing a lot of Alice Cooper's Feed My Frankenstien lately too. I always have to warm up with Hot rails to Hell though. Back to your situation Roy, looks like you might have to ask if he wants you to bring a guitar.
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Postby rparker » February 11th, 2012, 8:58 am

I bet it's nice to have a willing and capable bass player (or another other instrument) on the ready. Mine plays music like twice a year it seems. Hard to coax him away from his peeps and video games. I did offer him the opportunity to play bass and/or drms on a song I'm working on and recording. I think it piqued his interest. 8)

back to topic: He responded back to his own thread already to let me know everyone was a go, and that there might also be a keyboard player joining in, TBD. I played it safe and told him that I can't wait to come and watch & learn, and asked him if they had a set list he'd share. It'll let me see if I know anything they play of theirs already. 8)
Roy

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Postby almann1979 » February 11th, 2012, 11:02 pm

Let us know how it all works out Roy - it does indeed sound like an interesting invite - i hope at the least you get a good jam out of it.
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Postby TRGuitar » February 12th, 2012, 6:14 am

rparker wrote:I bet it's nice to have a willing and capable bass player (or another other instrument) on the ready. Mine plays music like twice a year it seems. Hard to coax him away from his peeps and video games.

You gotta realize my boy has it bad. (My boy, he will be 25 this month) I did an inventory and when the new bass gets here that will make 14 bass guitars and 3 6 strings.
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Postby Chris C » February 12th, 2012, 6:50 am

rparker wrote:
Now, I want to do the right think. I'd rather make a safe mistake than a presumptuous one. I'm not bring my guitar and amp. I don't even want to call him and ask him. I'm going to assume not out of safety. If anything, just so that the new member of the band doesn't think I'm in any way, shape or form being auditioned.

What would you guys do in my shoes?


I'd do as you suggest Roy, and I'd simply go along and listen.

If they wanted you to bring some gear then I would assume that they would say so. Given that the invitation came after you told him you were impressed by their sound, it sounds like your friend probably just wants somebody to applaud them and have a chat.

Cat wrote:The better you are, the less you follow. Live to set the pace. This is life...

Cat


I'm with Cat on that one. I wouldn't turn up looking (or feeling) like I was hanging out for an invitation to join in. I'd go along for the chat and have a listen - audition them if you like. If they are in the mood to ask you to jam - and you feel like accepting - then there's a good chance that somebody would have a guitar you could use for song or two. Or you could make another date. Whilst I don't advocate being a prima donna, or having tickets on yourself, I've not found that playing too eager or easy to get is that good a strategy. If they want you, make 'em work a little for it! :)

Hope you enjoy the occasion however it goes. :

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Postby cnev » February 12th, 2012, 7:25 am

Yea I'm with Chris C on this one, like I said before that's more me but if they were going to audtion you I'd think they'd at least tell you a few songs to prepare.

Anyway Roy I didn't realize you still weren't driving but how do you think your head is going to hold up with the drums etc? I would imagine you'll be in a relatively small room and unless they are playing some really mellow tunes and the drummer is using brushes might get uncomfortable. Bring some good earplugs.

But this is a good oppurtunity as Chris mentioned to get a feel for the band meet the guys and possibly set up some future jams. I know everyone is different but when we practice I usually like to stick to the plan, no visitors, no random jams with people and it has come up quite alot. Just work on our material, but any other day jamming is fine as long as we know in advance.

Either way it'll still be a good thing. Take a mental note or maybe he'll give you a list of the songs they do this way you can work on them for the next time.
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Postby rparker » February 12th, 2012, 7:32 am

OK, so his band keeps getting more and more interesting. He sent me the song list. It's current and even includes the song that he shared with me last week. His next comment was great. He said that they may or may not do any of the list. Sometimes they just chat and decide to do some song they've not done before, I guess to test it out and maybe add it to the list. He said the practice is very unstructured. I found that to be shocking, actually. Not practicing what they do already? I've seen his band do gigs at least twice. I can assure you that they do not sound like they've not practiced any song played.

The only things I can think of is that they really worked on the material a lot and have it down, and keep fresh on it as they see fit. The other thig is that perhaps by playing new tunes (to them) that they actually get to know each other's habits, styles, tendencies and that non-verbal communication better. Who knows. i will ask and report back. I just thought it interesting because I hear all you guys in bands talking about various band practice regimens.

I have played to various extents 11 of the 83. I replied to thank him and mention that I've played 11 of them at one time or another and mentioned the one I did best. "We have not played that one in two years", was his reply. I'm doomed. :lol: :lol:

I will spend a lot of time today and tomorrow re-learning the 11 and maybe bashing my way through more if I have the time.

cnev, I just saw your post. That's exactly the type of band rules that I would expect. Especially seeing how they are a good band.
Roy

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