To Click or not to Click? A thread for debate ;)

Robert Hau

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I have been going without a click for several performances now (we used to use backing tracks) and I feel so relieved now. The thing is, I dont think I would feel that relief if I did not work with a click for a good long time. Anyone else sorta feel this way? I know there are vastly differing opinions about using a click and I figured I'd start a thread about it but I am FREE without it! In the vid attached, it was the first time we played this song live, so it ain't perfect, but I think it's okay lol

 
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Doof

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I was with one band for a long while in the 90s, just a 4 piece with 2 guitars and bass. The decision was made to play more covers that called for more than what we could replicate. That required click, sequences, backing tracks, etc.... we did that for about a year then decided to get back down to basics as there was little room extend sections or alter intros and endings - It became stale.

I remember the first gig without all the fluff and it felt like I was a kid again playing out for the first time. It felt great, so I understand your sense of freedom.
 

Robert Hau

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I was with one band for a long while in the 90s, just a 4 piece with 2 guitars and bass. The decision was made to play more covers that called for more than what we could replicate. That required click, sequences, backing tracks, etc.... we did that for about a year then decided to get back down to basics as there was little room extend sections or alter intros and endings - It became stale.

I remember the first gig without all the fluff and it felt like I was a kid again playing out for the first time. It felt great, so I understand your sense of freedom.
Yeah man. It's a sense of freedom well earned. We plan to have some sets where we just jam on a riff or two.., I Could not expect to do that while latched to a click, that's for sure.
 

Tanabata

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I like playing with and without a click.

For one-time concerts or gigs that only happen a few times a year, I really like a click: people are sure to get the tempos they wanted and no debating after the gig or at the airport the next morning.

If it's a regular thing and I feel good about the band member's commitment to the beat, I really like playing without the click. There is more of a tendency to listen to each other without the click... if that's even possible with the people on the gig.

For recordings, it's basically the same, with a regular band, maybe not needed; a bunch of players reading and doing it one time only, I love having a click there. If there's time, they can do takes with and without, see what they like best later.

Listening back to things, especially if there was a lot of improvisation (like 10 minutes or longer), things on a click sure are steady, but don't feel as good as without a click (and could maybe be more interesting), at least that's how I feel about it.

Everything depends, like my teacher always used to say, on the company you keep.
 
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Robert Hau

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I like playing with and without a click.

For one-time concerts or gigs that only happen a few times a year, I really like a click: people are sure to get the tempos they wanted and no debating after the gig or at the airport the next morning.

If it's a regular thing and I feel good about the band member's commitment to the beat, I really like playing without the click. There is more of a tendency to listen to each other without the click... if that's even possible with the people on the gig.

For recordings, it's basically the same, with a regular band, maybe not needed; a bunch of players reading and doing it one time only, I love having a click there. If there's time, they can do takes with and without, see what they like best later.

Listening back to things, especially if there was a lot of improvisation (like 10 minutes or longer), things on a click sure are steady, but don't feel as good as without a click (and could maybe be more interesting), at least that's how I feel about it.

Everything depends, like my teacher always used to say, on the company you keep.
That sounds like experience talking right there lol I will likely always record to a click. That's probably all the "practice" I will need to stay pretty tight to the meter when I'm playing live without a click. One thing I absolutely lean on is my singers sense of rhythm and timing. She hasn't been playing bass all that long but I knew she could do it because of her keen sense of timing. That's good company to keep ;)
 

shuffle

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I dont use a click in live situations but have when recording.
I prefer a cowbell or tamborine click.
Establish that '1' and dont lose it!
I dont care about NIN but really dig what you two are presenting!
Im sharing with my bass friends.
Thanks for the inspiration!
And,what a voice!
Appreciate what you're doing,Robert!
 

Robert Hau

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I dont use a click in live situations but have when recording.
I prefer a cowbell or tamborine click.
Establish that '1' and dont lose it!
I dont care about NIN but really dig what you two are presenting!
Im sharing with my bass friends.
Thanks for the inspiration!
And,what a voice!
Appreciate what you're doing,Robert!
As long as it's not the lady shouting in my ear "1,2,3,4!" I am good with almost any sound lol Glad you enjoyed it! The lyrical content sold me on performing this song. It has a fun beat to play as well. I was very fortunate to have joined up this little girl with the big voice ;)
 

Trilock_Gurtu

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I recognize that video from your other thread.

I'm fine with a click or without. Its really situational. Its funny when you hear people say "it sounds too mechanical". That's the drummer, not the click. A drummer that has practiced/played a lot to a click knows how to make it 'breath', if you will. You'd be surprised at how many songs have been tracked to a click, and groove insanely hard. Now, don 't get me wrong, I'm not "pro-click", but there's some silly myths about it.
 

jptrickster

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We’all began way before the clock was en vogue. I had a wind up metronome on my piano when I was a little tyke, I use to put a wad of paper on the end and let it rip that was great fun! If the band is locked in , everyone’s in the same ballpark, club setting , there’s no need. Even if it’s to slow/fast as long as everyone’s together everything’s going to be ok. Larger stage setting or outside and you can’t hear diddly? A click is a necessity. Rock on !
 

Robert Hau

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knackers to a click. Too mechanical. Groove & feel is far superior :)
Live 100% ... I expect to have some swing live but for a recording, it's got to be locked in and likely timed up to grid by whomever is recording/editing. It's two completely separate spaces in my mind.
 

Robert Hau

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I recognize that video from your other thread.

I'm fine with a click or without. Its really situational. Its funny when you hear people say "it sounds too mechanical". That's the drummer, not the click. A drummer that has practiced/played a lot to a click knows how to make it 'breath', if you will. You'd be surprised at how many songs have been tracked to a click, and groove insanely hard. Now, don 't get me wrong, I'm not "pro-click", but there's some silly myths about it.
I get that for sure. It may be why I am for using a click in the studio VS going without live. It's also the style of music that can dictate the use of a click. I suppose we all fancy being that player who locks in like a machine but plays the groove with ease lol
 

Robert Hau

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We’all began way before the clock was en vogue. I had a wind up metronome on my piano when I was a little tyke, I use to put a wad of paper on the end and let it rip that was great fun! If the band is locked in , everyone’s in the same ballpark, club setting , there’s no need. Even if it’s to slow/fast as long as everyone’s together everything’s going to be ok. Larger stage setting or outside and you can’t hear diddly? A click is a necessity. Rock on !
I definitely vibe off the audience. That can make us a bit faster (usually) or slower (far less likely) but it seems to me we can get in the zone with the crowd better without a click. We can look back and be critics about how fast we went but we also knew the place was rockin'. It's an odd thing.
 

TheBeachBoy

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We don't really have a set list, so it would be impossible to play to a click without knowing what the next song is going to be. We have a master song list of about 3-400 songs that we go through, though typically there are about 50 we play regularly.

For recording, I use a click since it makes editing so much easier, plus when I'm in my own home studio, I'm usually playing all or most of the instruments, so it makes performing much easier too.
 


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