Some Things Never Change

dsop

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Most professional jobs are filled by word of mouth, personal recommendation. As I say, it's never been tougher, with more high quality musicians unemployed or under employed. Solo artists just get their musical director to put the word out, so you get no dreamers or time wasters any more.
Regarding established bands, if a member leaves, they either already know a perfect replacement, or one of the band has someone already in mind to recommend.
I was referring to starting a new band, not hiring players for an existing money-making band (do those even exist much anymore?). I wasn't referring to amateurs, rather musicians willing to do the work to get something great off the ground. When there's money involved, you're obviously in a position to pick from the cream of the crop. But I've even come across players with decades of playing/touring experience, graduates of great schools, and they still can't cut the mustard. As far as those "monsters" of YouTube, that isn't music. As Elvin used to say "If chops are so important, how come everyone's got 'em?"

Have you seen any of the Berklee College annual concerts or open days on Youtube? Incredible.
How many of them have you seen still working as a musician 12 months after graduating? I'm sure many of them end up applying for their Real Estate licenses or starting landscaping businesses. Others probably end up playing on a cruise ship or with Cirque de Soleil.
 
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FatherTime

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I am a hobbyist. I do set my own schedules and goals. I play what I like, but I also break out the books to improve my technique. I have also jammed with some people who said they wanted to get something started. At first I thought I just wasn't good enough. I wouldn't get a call back after one or two jam sessions. I understood they were auditioning me while we jammed. I just wanted to have fun because playing music with other people is a lot of fun. Then I started playing with this one guy who told me he was impressed with my playing. He was into 60s music. He sent me an extensive list of songs he wanted to learn. Then he picked 5 song we were going to rehearse. I learned every song from start to finish. We would set a date to run through the songs. The first rehearsal he didn't have his equipment set up so we spent most of the time doing that. Played about 30 minutes and then he had to go. The second rehearsal he fiddled around with his recording equipment most of the time showing me what he did on his Mac. The third time he was watching his daughter who wouldn't get off the drums so we didn't do much that time either. Over a period of 6 months it went on like this with a variety of different musicians coming and going, but not ever playing once through an entire song. He didn't even learn the songs he chose other than bits and pieces. I eventually stopped accepting his invites to rehearse. It's also a frustrating issue for us hobbyists who also enjoy playing with others.
 

TheBeachBoy

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That's how I originally became a drummer many years ago. It was easier to switch to another instrument (from guitar) than to find someone.
That's what I did in a side project, but went from drums to bass. Then we had problems finding a drummer!
 

KevinD

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You aren't describing musicians, you are describing hobbyists.
Of course a hobbyist is going to decide how much time they are going to dedicate to their music, and decide what is a priority when cancelling short term a rehearsal. There is often so much negativity posted online about 'musicians', lets just call it as it is - hobbyists!
Well, sure I will agree that what I am describing are hobbyists, that is who showed up to the auditions…yet in their minds they were the real deal.. In our ads we posted links to 3 songs (from our My Space Page :) so they knew what would be expected of them…
(Below is a Soundcloud link to one song called “Meet Your Match” -also posted in the audio files section of this forum, If direct linking is not allowed in posts I can delete this)

https://soundcloud.com/user-14322411%2Fmeet-your-match
Granted, not an easy song to sing, even the most ardent hobbyist would be either very talented, or very bold to think that they would come in and nail that, but they did. After the auditions we noticed that there were very few “listens” off our MS page… I think that most of them didn’t even both to listen, or listen enjoy to learn them. So that says more about them being inconsiderate of other’s time, vs them even approaching being a musician and any level.

We ended up doing a handful of gigs with various professional singers that were paid on a one-off basis but we never quite got the chemistry right.

Eventually my guitar player and I ended up working on projects for some of them a lot of that kept us busy for a couple of years as sidemen.
 

Rock Salad

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At least nothing "went missing" during those auditions.
There's worse than flakes out there
You'll find some people, probably too many even. When it rains, it pours seems to me
 

Whitten

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How many of them have you seen still working as a musician 12 months after graduating? I'm sure many of them end up applying for their Real Estate licenses or starting landscaping businesses. Others probably end up playing on a cruise ship or with Cirque de Soleil.
True, not because they are flakes or 'can't cut the mustard', but because it is hugely tough to get a job in music - which only goes to prove my point.
 

Whitten

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I agree, to a point, but, both groups are people, and like any person worth their salt, your word is your bond. There are many 'pros'/'musicians'/whatever, that have not lived up to their word, and many 'hobbyists' that have. In the end, like all labels, they're baloney, you either do what you agreed to, or you're a flake.
But the initial post is obviously about a part time 'fun' band, but it's couched as 'musicians'. I just don't get why people have to generalise about a group of workers.
I have gigged with raging flu. I played a stadium show with someone who had such bad food poisoning they spent the day in hospital and were trowing up into a bucket the whole 2 hour show. The show must go on (for professionals). Trying to claim that you can be a 'musician' (as a whole community) and not learn the songs and not turn up to the first rehearsal, is not going to happen AS A WHOLE, but obviously happens all the time when some people view music as 'a hobby', and where better options take precedent over being committed to the music and their band mates.
 

Old PIT Guy

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Sorry you’re having trouble finding a KB player. I know it’s not easy to put a band together, and certainly not under current conditions.

I’m unclear on this part of the story:

One fellow replied to the CL ad. He talked a good game, had expensive equipment, loved our songbook. But...

he canceled on our first scheduled audition.

he had two weeks to learn a few tunes and only semi-learned half of them.

he could hardly play.
He canceled the first scheduled audition so you didn’t hear him play with your band, is this correct? But he did a lousy job with the songs and he could hardly play. How did you know this before the first audition? And if you did, why didn’t the band cancel the first scheduled audition?

In any event, keep at it and I'm sure you'll find a good fit. Though that might be difficult for the foreseeable future, unfortunately.
 

thin shell

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As usual here at DFO, a bunch of amateurs arguing with a seasoned professional, of which we have very few here.

I agree with Whitten.
If someone asks what I do, I don't tell them I'm a drummer or musician. I tell them what I do for a living. If I am a movie producer, a NASA engineer or a greeter at Walmart, that's what I tell them. If I decide to do music for a living then I am a musician. If I am to be a musician I will have to do all those things mentioned. Show up on time, learn assigned songs, do what I say I am going to do. If I don't I won't be successful and I won't be a musician.
 

Matched Gripper

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Well, sure I will agree that what I am describing are hobbyists, that is who showed up to the auditions…yet in their minds they were the real deal.. In our ads we posted links to 3 songs (from our My Space Page :) so they knew what would be expected of them…
(Below is a Soundcloud link to one song called “Meet Your Match” -also posted in the audio files section of this forum, If direct linking is not allowed in posts I can delete this)

https://soundcloud.com/user-14322411%2Fmeet-your-match
Granted, not an easy song to sing, even the most ardent hobbyist would be either very talented, or very bold to think that they would come in and nail that, but they did. After the auditions we noticed that there were very few “listens” off our MS page… I think that most of them didn’t even both to listen, or listen enjoy to learn them. So that says more about them being inconsiderate of other’s time, vs them even approaching being a musician and any level.

We ended up doing a handful of gigs with various professional singers that were paid on a one-off basis but we never quite got the chemistry right.

Eventually my guitar player and I ended up working on projects for some of them a lot of that kept us busy for a couple of years as sidemen.
Great song! The 7/8 section was very cool! Was that a real horn section?
 
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Trilock_Gurtu

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But the initial post is obviously about a part time 'fun' band, but it's couched as 'musicians'. I just don't get why people have to generalise about a group of workers.
I have gigged with raging flu. I played a stadium show with someone who had such bad food poisoning they spent the day in hospital and were trowing up into a bucket the whole 2 hour show. The show must go on (for professionals). Trying to claim that you can be a 'musician' (as a whole community) and not learn the songs and not turn up to the first rehearsal, is not going to happen AS A WHOLE, but obviously happens all the time when some people view music as 'a hobby', and where better options take precedent over being committed to the music and their band mates.
It might be a "part time fun band", but it doesn't make their time being wasted any less important, to them.
 

dsop

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Request a demo next time.
Exactly. If someone doesn't have a catalog of music that they've played on which they can share with you, don't waste your time. These days, both audio and video are a prerequisite when auditioning.
 

Tornado

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I was referring to starting a new band, not hiring players for an existing money-making band (do those even exist much anymore?). I wasn't referring to amateurs, rather musicians willing to do the work to get something great off the ground. When there's money involved, you're obviously in a position to pick from the cream of the crop. But I've even come across players with decades of playing/touring experience, graduates of great schools, and they still can't cut the mustard. As far as those "monsters" of YouTube, that isn't music. As Elvin used to say "If chops are so important, how come everyone's got 'em?"



How many of them have you seen still working as a musician 12 months after graduating? I'm sure many of them end up applying for their Real Estate licenses or starting landscaping businesses. Others probably end up playing on a cruise ship or with Cirque de Soleil.

Life is just hard man. Sometimes the opportunities don't line up for even the best, because there is just not that many of them. At some point, you have to put food on the table, and that time between your early 20s and early 40s is make or break for your entire life. You see a story along these lines all the time here: wanted to go pro/went to music school / was a pro... Then boom, you're hungry, the rent is due, and you just want more out of life. Welcome to Hobbyville. You just can't be as dedicated now, skills deteriorate, other things are more important. Then one day you're 43 and find yourself with some space to breathe and want to dip your toe back in the water. That's nothing to look down on, frustrating as it may be when all the musicians you come across fit that profile. it's just what it is.
 

dsop

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That's nothing to look down on, frustrating as it may be when all the musicians you come across fit that profile. it's just what it is.
The musicians I'm complaining about are not hobbyists, but professionals. All they do is play, teach, and record. My point is that, in my experience over the last decade at least, many musicians I've interacted with were not doing what I feel is necessary for a successful career as a musician. With fewer and fewer opportunities available, I guess it gets harder and harder to put in the work for any one specific thing.
 

RogersLudwig

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Thinking of looking for a band or gigs, does anyone here use Musicians Contact Service? I used them back in the 70s when they were located on either Santa Moncic or Sunset Blvd. in Hollywood. BC, before computers, one used to go in and go through file cards like an old library catalog. Anyway, they still exist, but I don't know how reliable the service is these days.
 

RIDDIM

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It's a lot easier to screen folks these days. Folks who have been doing substantive stuff for a while generally have performances documented on YT, Vimeo, Soundcloud, etc. Then you can request a video demo of specific tunes, and from those, select who to audition in person. It doesn't hurt to ask for a list of who they've worked with either; if they have a history of flaky behavior, that will likely manifest.
 
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