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  1. #1
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    02.21.17 @ 07:16 PM
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    Default Experience or talent?

    I witnessed a lively debate recently between 2 fellow musicians re: criteria to use when adding a new member. I'd love to hear some of your opinions.
    In this scenario, lets assume everyone gets along with both candidates on a personal level, but you don't know anything about either one as a "person".
    would you rather have:
    A fairly seasoned professional with decent name recognition that could perhaps help start a following, has the right amount of good gear that a gig would require and is solid on their instrument, albeit with limited capability. This person knows their limitations and can make the most of them by being really good at what they can do, or...
    Someone with perhaps less recognition, owns and plays multiple instruments of varying quality, and seems to have more talent than the other guy?
    I've heard compelling cases for each. What do you all think?

  2. #2
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    12.11.17 @ 07:17 PM
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    It would depend on the gig. If it's a gig playing top 40 exactly like the record,
    Guy A would make more sense as a less-is-more approach to that stuff is generally
    preferred, but knowing your theory and having experience is definite bonus. If it's
    a more fluid situation where you can be more creative, Guy B would probably work
    better. Ideally, you find Guy C who has it all!

    It can be a tough call. I actually lost a fulltime top 40 gig to a less-is-more
    kinda guy because I was "too rock". Well, that and that he wanted to do it
    for half the rate! And here I thought there was no such thing as "too rock".

  3. #3
    Atomic Punk Dave's Dreidel's Avatar
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    12.11.17 @ 05:21 PM
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    Default

    I think it depends on the make up of your band and what the potential members role will be.

    For example, I can play bass, keys, a little guitar, and sing, but I am not going to wow you in any single capacity, but I am probably a decent guy to have in a band.

    At least that is what I have been told, but the bastards could have been lying to me to just be nice!!

    Also, if they are writing their own material, would depend on how the band writes. I sit down and write a song out on paper before even picking up an instrument, but a lot of guys/bands jam their way thru creating songs, and I would be horrible at that.

    I have gotten to the stage in my life that I don't want to be around people I don't like. So, as long as the person is somewhat capable, I would take the guy I like being around better.
    Taylor Swift is nice to look at. Adele can sing.

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  4. #4
    Baluchitherium
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    04.02.15 @ 07:26 AM
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    in my experience i've found that experience is always better than downright technical ability. i know some guys who could play a million exotic scales in various modes all over the guitar, but when it came to jamming a tune they're lost. i also know people who probably only know 1 scale or none at all but experience has taught them how to naturally find the notes that fit and their timing and feel is perfect. saying that though, it's not always the case. the kit they use has little to do with it, how they use it though is another story. just my $0.02
    http://www.facebook.com/Tommywho5150

    And with that I'm off to the kitchen to make myself a lesbian omelette...LLFHS in response to one of Graeme's post's


    "The anal beads may have scarred SNIC for life. That guy is tough as fucking nails!! No normal guy could take anal beads to the head and survive! "...OLO on SNIC's near death experience at TLW

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  5. #5
    Emperor of VHLinks.com Brett's Avatar
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    12.11.17 @ 11:40 PM
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    Default

    I would have to agree that experience would be more important to me. Also honestly I like to play with people I like...I've been in bands with assholes, it's a miserable experience. So I think my first thing would be personality, certainly now at age 40. I'm not putting up with egos anymore, I'm old and not making it anymore anyway. I just think experienced players tend to be more solid in gigging situations for sure.
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  6. #6
    Baluchitherium
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    Chemistry is an important element.

    Cover band...if you want to make quick work of getting out and working...experience and name recognition. Don't turn down less experienced people though that are solid as a player and person. In time, long term they may be the best choice.

    For mine two guys joining us had less experience. It was overshadowed by being solid, smart players who are very serious and passionate about it. It's working out well for us. Nice to have people in a band that have your back and nice to know everyone is stable, prepared, serious and reliable.

    Original band I'd go with talent over experience generally speaking. Experience can be gained. Not always the case with talent.

    In either case I'd hope to find people with no negative imposing issues, compatible enough personally and with musical chemistry.

    Either way we asked personal questions. What they did for a living, their schedule, if they have a spouse how they feel about their musical aspirations.
    This is for a part time band. Gig a week at most generally is the goal. We turned down perfect amazing pro monster players because the personal stuff or personalities just didn't sit right. Red flags. People try to put their best face forward when you meet them. We tried to cut through that a little to make sure we ended up with someone compatible musically, personally and someone reliable with no imposing issues. Musicians are a breed their own. It's tough out there. lol
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  7. #7
    Baluchitherium
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    04.02.15 @ 07:26 AM
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    Quote Originally Posted by Brett View Post
    I would have to agree that experience would be more important to me. Also honestly I like to play with people I like...I've been in bands with assholes, it's a miserable experience. So I think my first thing would be personality, certainly now at age 40. I'm not putting up with egos anymore, I'm old and not making it anymore anyway. I just think experienced players tend to be more solid in gigging situations for sure.
    reminds me of an old bass player in a former band, the guy was an incredible player almost like Billy Sheenan but also perhaps the biggest douchebag ever to come into existance and we utterly hated eachother, to the point we had several full on fist fights, he joined the band a few years after we formed but as soon as he was in he started trying to take charge of everything and tried to oust me and the drummer (both founding members of quite a succesful band), anyway to cut a long story short the band disintegrated about 12months after he joined and we all went our seperate ways. then a few weeks ago he found me on Facebook, which also has my cell phone number on it, he calls me and asked me to join his latest band because apparently the guy they have now has no ear, no talent and an ego problem (his words)...i dunno if i should entertain trying to work with the guy again, i fear it could be utter hell.
    http://www.facebook.com/Tommywho5150

    And with that I'm off to the kitchen to make myself a lesbian omelette...LLFHS in response to one of Graeme's post's


    "The anal beads may have scarred SNIC for life. That guy is tough as fucking nails!! No normal guy could take anal beads to the head and survive! "...OLO on SNIC's near death experience at TLW

    "I'm a 45-year-old man, and I still like to wear a thong or a speedo when I go swimming.
    Not because I have a great body, it's just an easy way to make sure I have the hotel swimming pool all to myself."...Bullwinkle for quite obvious reasons!

    "Dude, the cashier gave me the creepiest sneer when he rang up my unmentionables!"...Sassy Lassy during a Facebook conversation!

  8. #8
    Baluchitherium
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    10.01.15 @ 06:45 PM
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    Quote Originally Posted by tommywho5150 View Post
    reminds me of an old bass player in a former band, the guy was an incredible player almost like Billy Sheenan but also perhaps the biggest douchebag ever to come into existance and we utterly hated eachother, to the point we had several full on fist fights, he joined the band a few years after we formed but as soon as he was in he started trying to take charge of everything and tried to oust me and the drummer (both founding members of quite a succesful band), anyway to cut a long story short the band disintegrated about 12months after he joined and we all went our seperate ways. then a few weeks ago he found me on Facebook, which also has my cell phone number on it, he calls me and asked me to join his latest band because apparently the guy they have now has no ear, no talent and an ego problem (his words)...i dunno if i should entertain trying to work with the guy again, i fear it could be utter hell.
    I'm not going to get into detail but I've dealt with my share of aholes in bands. Some I thought were truly friends who turned out to be jealous opportunists. I'd say give it a try out of curiosity. I try to see the good in people often to a fault. Maybe the dude has matured and is a better person these days. At least check it out. Expect the worst but hope for the best. lol
    Sadly though often people don't change. Often times those experiences help guide you to healthier situations. You learn what to avoid. Last thing you want is to go backwards with that. So give it a hopeful try and if he reveals himself to be the same or worse and the gig is not worth it tell him you thought you could make time for it but sadly have too much going on..thank him and run! lol
    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]

  9. #9
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    02.21.17 @ 07:16 PM
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    Great answers all, as I would expect here. I have to say AtomicPunk's words are much like my own.
    It's the band I play guitar in and I've been told the decision is mine, so I guess I'm the tiebreaker.
    Since it is a cover band, I'm going with the better known, seasoned frontman. His range is solid enough to play a full night of good rock, we'll immediately get the A rooms, plus our voices blend well together and we're all veterans of the local scene. Oh yeah, he fits our personalities like a glove and we're some goof bastages.
    We're giving the other guy another shot tomorrow night in order to give them each the same number of times jamming with the band, but I'm pretty much decided. I've kept my poker face on, so it's totally up in the air as far as the other guys are concerned.
    Great conversation, though, so let's keep it going if anyone else has something to add.
    Thanks.

  10. #10
    Baluchitherium
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    Well it sounds like you found a great match. I didn't know you were talking about a front man. Only thing to add is..If the less experienced dude's vocal talent, range, versatility and stage presence isn't much better than I think you got it right. Only worth taking a step back with a lesser experienced/connected guy is if down the road he'd be a much better vocalist/frontman.

    You don't want to see him in a club 8 months from now blowing the doors off your dude etc. lol If he was that much better you likely wouldn't be asking advice. lol Just tossing it out there.


    Either way, be complimentary and cool to who you don't bring in. Ask if you can keep his number handy to call if in the future things change or if you hear of an opportunity elsewhere for him. Always nice to keep it more like a network of musicians helping each other than a rejection and a closed door...especially if the guy is good enough to work with.

    All that is mostly common sense. Don't mean to tell ya stuff u already know. GL
    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]

  11. #11
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    02.21.17 @ 07:16 PM
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    The guy who didn't get the gig took it well. He has an acoustic project on the side. We also mentioned that if we ever decide to become a 5 piece, he'd be the first on the list. He appreciated that.
    Again, thanks for everyone's input. Just wanted to be deliberate in the search and verify my initial, gut instinct.

  12. #12
    Baluchitherium
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    04.02.15 @ 07:26 AM
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    Quote Originally Posted by At0micPunk View Post
    I'm not going to get into detail but I've dealt with my share of aholes in bands. Some I thought were truly friends who turned out to be jealous opportunists. I'd say give it a try out of curiosity. I try to see the good in people often to a fault. Maybe the dude has matured and is a better person these days. At least check it out. Expect the worst but hope for the best. lol
    Sadly though often people don't change. Often times those experiences help guide you to healthier situations. You learn what to avoid. Last thing you want is to go backwards with that. So give it a hopeful try and if he reveals himself to be the same or worse and the gig is not worth it tell him you thought you could make time for it but sadly have too much going on..thank him and run! lol
    i took your advice and went for it...the guy has changed, much for the better, there's still flashes of his former self but i guess thats to be expected. i also met the guy they want me to either replace or work alongside within the band (i get the impression they want me to tutor him a little and maybe tame him!..lol) and sadly they were right, he has an ego as big as a house but can barely play 2 notes in the same key, which became painfully obvious when we tried to jam. anyway, to cut a long story short, i have not made a descision regarding joining this band, i get the feeling i'll be expected to do a lot more work than i anticipated and i don't think that the music they are intending on playing really fits me and i don't want to get up on stage and make it look like im either not enjoying it fully or working...i dunno, the juries out but i think i'm gonna pass.
    http://www.facebook.com/Tommywho5150

    And with that I'm off to the kitchen to make myself a lesbian omelette...LLFHS in response to one of Graeme's post's


    "The anal beads may have scarred SNIC for life. That guy is tough as fucking nails!! No normal guy could take anal beads to the head and survive! "...OLO on SNIC's near death experience at TLW

    "I'm a 45-year-old man, and I still like to wear a thong or a speedo when I go swimming.
    Not because I have a great body, it's just an easy way to make sure I have the hotel swimming pool all to myself."...Bullwinkle for quite obvious reasons!

    "Dude, the cashier gave me the creepiest sneer when he rang up my unmentionables!"...Sassy Lassy during a Facebook conversation!

  13. #13
    Baluchitherium
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    Quote Originally Posted by tommywho5150 View Post
    i took your advice and went for it...the guy has changed, much for the better, there's still flashes of his former self but i guess thats to be expected. i also met the guy they want me to either replace or work alongside within the band (i get the impression they want me to tutor him a little and maybe tame him!..lol) and sadly they were right, he has an ego as big as a house but can barely play 2 notes in the same key, which became painfully obvious when we tried to jam. anyway, to cut a long story short, i have not made a descision regarding joining this band, i get the feeling i'll be expected to do a lot more work than i anticipated and i don't think that the music they are intending on playing really fits me and i don't want to get up on stage and make it look like im either not enjoying it fully or working...i dunno, the juries out but i think i'm gonna pass.
    Hm..Well glad you gave it a try. You never know where something will lead even if this current band of his is not for you. It's good you guys reconnected and the guy has changed for the better etc.

    As far as the current situation there and the egotistical guitarist that needs coaching... Sounds like a potential bad situation to me 2. How serious are they if they bring you in yet keep a guy who plays/acts as you describe?? Why bother keeping him? He someone's buddy? Then they expect you to coach him?...but thats not made totally clear to you? So what then? As he improves will he soften his edge and be appreciative and bond with ya or maybe resent your help then have extra fuel for his ego etc. I'd feel red flags too. It's not easy working with another guitarist who is competitive and an asshole especially if you could hold the fort down yourself.

    All that is pretty immature and unprofessional imo.

    Unless it's a killer gig, good work and you need the work, or for now it's "better than nothing"...I'd avoid any negative bullshit like that...if that IS the case. You likely have other opportunities....but still it's hard out there and if you don't have another option right now and it's not too negative I DO believe in the it's better than nothing idea. One thing leads to another. Bullshit posers end up burying themselves and if you need a musical outlet or a gig it may be worth sticking it out. You have to gage though how dysfunctional it is.

    I recently looked to get back into playing part time and it took two years to find people with enough compatible talent who weren't assholes or wackjobs. I had to ride out a bad situation to get to a better one. It's harder on a part time basis when you have a full time pro mentality. I can't travel all over as I have a "day" job but I don't want to play with people who don't take it serious etc...so it's hard. I sympathize with these things. lol Good luck.
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