Some Things Never Change

jmcohen

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It’s amazing how interpretations change the original intent of a posting. Here we are caught up in the definition of what a true musician is. That was not my point, and perhaps I did not state it clearly. My point is:

It fries my bee-hind when people express that they are competent at playing a musical instrument, and additionally express an interest in playing said instrument with us while we are playing our own instruments with a goal toward creating a piece of music that resembles a popular tune. Some of these people lack the requisite skill on their instrument to assist in creating the aforementioned pleasant tune. Some of these people demonstrate that they have difficulty in meeting a pre-arranged schedule, such as appearing on a predetermined day, or at a predetermined time to play our musical instruments. And these difficulties in competence or timeliness are not disclosed in earlier discussion. In fact, most often these shortcomings are expressly decried as NOT being a trait of this person, when in fact subsequent actual experience quickly identifies said person of being in possession of these undesirable traits in spades. THAT is what I meant to say.
 

Whitten

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It’s amazing how interpretations change the original intent of a posting. Here we are caught up in the definition of what a true musician is.
Sure, I was merely pointing out that it was a subset of musician that annoyed you. It's like saying health workers are time wasters, or postal workers are lazy.
It's a bad combination of a negative moan and a generalisation. I have no problem with you being annoyed, I would be too, but you should identify the type of musician you are annoyed with, not tarnish everyone who makes music with your negative brush.
 

Whitten

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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.
I would be genuinely interested to read what you think those things are.
 

Tornado

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It’s amazing how interpretations change the original intent of a posting. Here we are caught up in the definition of what a true musician is. That was not my point, and perhaps I did not state it clearly. My point is:

It fries my bee-hind when people express that they are competent at playing a musical instrument, and additionally express an interest in playing said instrument with us while we are playing our own instruments with a goal toward creating a piece of music that resembles a popular tune. Some of these people lack the requisite skill on their instrument to assist in creating the aforementioned pleasant tune. Some of these people demonstrate that they have difficulty in meeting a pre-arranged schedule, such as appearing on a predetermined day, or at a predetermined time to play our musical instruments. And these difficulties in competence or timeliness are not disclosed in earlier discussion. In fact, most often these shortcomings are expressly decried as NOT being a trait of this person, when in fact subsequent actual experience quickly identifies said person of being in possession of these undesirable traits in spades. THAT is what I meant to say.

Your frustration is valid. But the point that others who run in more professional circles don't generally have these problems is also valid. I mean, if I ever answer or place a Craigslist ad, I know exactly what I'm getting myself into.
 

dyland

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Another way to look at it is that somebody with no tether to the world of music is not overly concerned with their reputation. I wouldn't show up to an audition unprepared because I want to preserve my reputation in my local scene as a reliable player. Some dude who plays to records on the weekend may not be thinking in those terms.

As previously stated, asking for recorded samples usually nips it in the bud. I've had people ghost once that question is asked, which is fine. I'd rather them ghost the email exchange than waste our time at an audition.
 

dsop

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I would be genuinely interested to read what you think those things are.
As it pertains to my experiences, basic things like replying to messages or emails, returning phone calls, showing up on time, and having the music prepared (especially when I have provided charts ahead of time). As for actual live performances, knowing the music well enough so that you're not staring at charts on stage all night.
Beyond that, there are the perception basics, like basic hygiene, appearance, and attitude which also go a long way.
 

dsop

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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.
I used them a long time ago too, when I was looking for work. I had a few interactions, but never actually got anything concrete out of it.
 

jmcohen

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Sure, I was merely pointing out that it was a subset of musician that annoyed you. It's like saying health workers are time wasters, or postal workers are lazy.
It's a bad combination of a negative moan and a generalisation. I have no problem with you being annoyed, I would be too, but you should identify the type of musician you are annoyed with, not tarnish everyone who makes music with your negative brush.
Whitten,
Here I find myself apologizing again. I missed your point. I thought you were pointing out that anyone other than a professional, working musician was not in fact a musician. It was under that interpretation I drew my conclusions. You objected to my broad statement of “musicians being flakes.” I get your point now, and by no means do I think all musicians are flakes. I know that if you are a professional musician, your career will be short-lived if you cannot be relied upon. I retired from a field where the bad behavior of one strongly and irreparably affected the rest of us, so I am sensitive to that type of hyperbole. My intent was to illustrate how, back in the day, I had trouble counting on guys answering ads for our garage band being flakes. My band now is a step or two above garage bands, but we aren’t pros (in some sense I guess we are since we get paid for our gigs, but I think you get the point).
 

KevinD

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Great song! The 7/8 section was very cool! Was that a real horn section?
Thank you! Yes, that was NY session guys Mario Cruz on Sax, Jerry Sokolov on Trumpet and Bill Fleck on Trombone (he did the arrangement s well) It was a fun project those guys had a good time when we brought them in.
 
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Matched Gripper

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Thank you! Yes, that was NY session guys Mario Cruz on Sax, Jerry Sokolov on Trumpet and Bill Fleck on Trombone. It was a fun project those had a good time when we brought them in.
Great arrangement! Very tight sound! Drummer’s delight!
 

Jay-Dee

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Thank you! Yes, that was NY session guys Mario Cruz on Sax, Jerry Sokolov on Trumpet and Bill Fleck on Trombone (he did the arrangement s well) It was a fun project those guys had a good time when we brought them in.
Man, that whole song is as cool as an Eskimo's freezer, I had to listen to it a few times, nice playing :thumbup:.
 

GregR

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I find as I get older and have played in several bands, that the serious musicians tend to gravitate to one another. The band I am in now, was a "competitor" for years with my previous band. We knew a lot of the same crowd and even played a few gigs together. When my band broke up, I played with another band for a while and then my current band had a falling out with their drummer and came calling. I was reluctant at first but they persuaded me to come and jam with them. They gave me a cd of a live show, and I spent hours learning how they played the tunes. The first practice was like we had played together for years. We play some great gigs and have a lot of fun. This is one of the first "no ego" bands I have ever been in also. maybe that is also a product of aging and realizing we are not going to be international rock stars.
 

Whitten

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As it pertains to my experiences, basic things like replying to messages or emails, returning phone calls, showing up on time, and having the music prepared (especially when I have provided charts ahead of time). As for actual live performances, knowing the music well enough so that you're not staring at charts on stage all night.
Beyond that, there are the perception basics, like basic hygiene, appearance, and attitude which also go a long way.

Well you are right, all those behaviours would be toxic to a career in music.
In my experience, people like that don't last long and typically inhabit the lower paid, lower run of the industry.
I have had people show up late to work, I have had people who aren't prepared for the gig. I would never hire those people again, and usually told them on the day I wasn't happy with them so they could learn.
Finally, I am surprised, but at all levels of the music industry (from musicians to gear manufacturers) I have phone calls not returned and emails ignored. It seems to be a growing trend - I think possibly because people are so overwhelmed now, with access 24/7. I admit I don't understand it. It is a common courtesy to reply to a message, even if it's one line containing four or five words.
 

Old PIT Guy

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Well you are right, all those behaviours would be toxic to a career in music.

Finally, I am surprised, but at all levels of the music industry (from musicians to gear manufacturers) I have phone calls not returned and emails ignored. It seems to be a growing trend - I think possibly because people are so overwhelmed now, with access 24/7. I admit I don't understand it. It is a common courtesy to reply to a message, even if it's one line containing four or five words.

I’d characterize those ‘toxic’ issues as a result of people’s inability to treat the virtual world as they would their business and personal dealings in the real world, or they’re engaged in a purposeful assimilation of the virtual world’s anonymity and reduced proximity and projected it onto their real worlds.

Real social interaction is increasingly an exception since the smartphone. Everything from live music to shopping malls to buying basic necessities with 2 day shipping, and just about anything you’d ramble off to a store to buy and engage with other people to accomplish is in serious decline. And when some people do engage, they do it tethered to a smartphone to shut off potential interaction.

The stores in my area have moved employees from cash registers to personal shopping duties as online shopping has ballooned. Before anyone thinks pandemic, which certainly has bumped it, those services began well before last March.

People increasingly take any opportunity not to deal with other people face to face, preferring to sublimate that online where they have a measure of control; the sort of control with features like plausible deniability for not writing someone back or ghosting them with built-in bolt holes. Last but not least, the ability to effect behind the scenes Machiavellian machinations to achieve even more control, going so far as to cancel people for sport. In a twist to that, they’ll decry cancel-culture in the same breath to erect a facade of virtue. Fiction is a booby prize for the assimilated.

Control is the entire draw of the virtual world. And so as to be expected with what isn’t real, what has been standard operating procedure in the virtual social sphere is increasingly not only spilling out into the real world, it's becoming not good enough in the virtual. Some people are now dissatisfied with a virtual war-room toolset that provides them easy ways to Block, Report and Police ‘bad actors’ in their bubble; they want even more control of the virtual platforms they choose to live on. They’ll even buy it if they have to.

Because this virtual social reality is so pervasive, the behavior member dsop describes is ubiquitous in all walks off life. And it’s only going to get worse, and at a time when the world needs the exact opposite.


tr;dr

Common courtesy has become an option, not a feature.
 

OldSticks

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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.
"How do you get the guitar player off of your front porch?....pay for the pizza!". That's just a joke, I love musicians, and I can't produce music even I would listen to without them. Finding a good front man or woman that can really sing and lead the show has been my frustration. Too many times I've been pressured to sing while drumming. I can't sing well when I'm drumming, and I can't drum well when I'm singing, and on break I'd hear people asking each other "who's the singer? I can't see the singer". Never again!
 


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