Are YOU the best musician in your band?

Targalx

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Fortunately, these days, I'm playing with musicians who are either at my level or above my level. But, I've been in previous band situations where, not to brag, but I was clearly the most competent musician in the room. I felt like, as the guy behind the kit, I could hear things that the others couldn't hear. I felt like, if I wasn't the one noticing this stuff, this band would've sounded 50% worse.

You know, I had to stop the song when the guitarist and bassist don't realize they're clashing on chord changes. I had to stop the song because someone's singing out of tune. I've been the one to tell the other musicians that they're not playing their parts correctly. Some of them looked at me like, "what do you know, you're just the drummer." But I'm one of those drummers that can spot the difference between a D major and D minor.

I don't like being the "know it all" or the wet blanket in the jam room, but I felt like I had to intervene when stuff is out of tune, out of time, or just incorrect. I felt like nobody else notices (or cares).

Any of you in this boat now, or were in this boat?
 

polycrescendo

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I've certainly been in that boat and I'm not bragging either, it's no fun. After a 2 years of playing shows with that band and seeing that we were going nowhere, I quit that band to to practice and to become a better musician. I made instant enemies but I continued to progress on my instrument while the rest of the guys stagnated on their instruments.
 

moodman

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I've been that and the weakest link too, I improved a lot in the latter, was frustrated a lot in the former.
it's best when all the players are near the same level, with maybe, a monster virtuoso in front.
I appreciate my band mates for what they can do, chops are only part of it, dynamics, feel etc.
I don't try to play anything I can't and don't ask that of anyone else.
 

pwc1141

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Not sure how to compare a guitar player or pianist to myself as a drummer in terms of better or worse. We have different roles and I have seen mine as rhythmic support. Have I played with bad players ? Yes. Haven't we all ? Have I played with great players ? Sure. Was I a better or a worse musician than them in either case ? Probably not .. but I was certainly older than most with more stage experience that helped bridge any differences in skill levels. But over the years, if I felt over or under qualified for the situation, I tended to move on to something else.
 

snappy

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Bass player is miles ahead of me academically , studied at Berkley etc , but I am the " ideas " guy .
Benny,
Re: you being the ideas guy.
I am Not surprised.
 

equipmentdork

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It's funny that you mention D major and minor, because I encountered that exact problem with a guitar player playing Ozzy's "Mr. Crowley". Oy.
Not to be a snob, but I won't play in a band where the guitarist isn't better than me, and I am NOT particularly good at guitar.
Life's too short to be in a band of hacks. I want to be pushed to be better as well as learn things from the other players.



Dan
 

JDA

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O hell no I better not be..
Or else then I'm the leader..
I'd rather accompany or back up (at least one usually more) fantastic musician.
 

Mcjnic

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I can’t imagine artistic greatness resulting from one who puts himself above any of the musicians he’s traveling through the creative process with.
One of the more important ingredients in the soup of artisan integrity is a healthy dose of humbleness.

... of course, this doesn’t apply to the keyboardist ... we are all much better than that guy.
 

Rock Salad

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You need to define best.
I have put together bands that have gone on to some small success as the most experienced and methodic player. I have taken hour long garage jams and a notebook full of scribbles and made a tight rockin set, but it wasn't me the people came to see when we got out. So, I was never the best, but I have been able to make some (to me,) great original music with people much less experienced than I was.
And I still am doing it, it is much slower now as we are older and the other guys are a tad less directable but it will get there, and still it won't be me the people come to see.
 

VintageUSA

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All five of us are at about the same level.....................not the greatest, but far better than competent.
I'm the only one in the band with a degree in music but the other guys have worked hard in bands all their lives to get to a greater level.
We have one guitar player who (arguably) could be better than the rest of us but, his laziness takes over.
 

TheElectricCompany

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In a word, yes. In my Zeppelin tribute band I'm the most versed in the music. I know the structure of the songs and the intended feel, the attitude to play the song with rather than just repeating notes. I also know the history of the band from A to Z, including different ways they played songs live and how we can modify the album arrangements with those changes. I think I'm the only one in the band that worships Zeppelin rather than just likes them a lot. I also know my parts better than anyone else and come the absolute closest of anyone to sounding like the player I'm emulating.

That said, the keyboard player knows the theory and can explain to our bass player and guitar player specifically what notes they're playing wrong and the precise form of the song, no matter the song. He might not be a John Paul Jones or Zeppelin devotee, but he's the smartest guy in the band and works harder than anyone. Without him we'd not even function. Our guitar player gets worse with every performance and we're lucky if the bass player just maintains.
 

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