We came across this book entitled The Amazing Adventures of a Marginally Succesful Musician which describes the 4200 gigs, 250 Film and TV song placements and 30 years in music of author/musician Bill Cinque.
For your enjoyment, here’s a snippet from a chapter entitled The Music World’s Most Over Used Phrases:
I will interpret some of the most common language you will hear directly after you walk off the bandstand after a show. As with all matters in my book, I will do my level best to handle this with the delicacy it deserves:
“Sounded great out front” = you sucked.
“The bass player was solid” = he sucked.
“The material is really commercial” = it sucks.
“Great stage presence” = don’t sing.
“The chick singer is awesome” = I want to have sex with the chick singer.
Be realistic. All your friends are trying to be supportive. They know how excited you are about your new band. They are truly happy for you. They drove 20 miles in the rain and paid $14 for cheese fries and a glass of something brown just to give you an audience. You come running out of the foot lights and say, “So, what did you think? Did you like that last tune? Don’t you love the new drummer? You know you can tell me what you really think.” Right about now is the moment of truth. Your college room mate, Uncle Tad and J.J. from shipping and receiving all look you right in the eye and start using words like “amazing” and “awesome.” Then, as if scripted, comes a stream of the above mentioned phrases.Hey, you had it coming. Asking these people how they liked your show is similar to your girlfriend asking you if she looks fat in that skirt. The truth? You want the truth? Every Jack Nicholson fan knows the next line. No one wants to crush you. No one has the heart. Except me.
BOTTOM LINE: Bad shows are going to happen. There will be any number of reasons for a bad show. Sometimes it’s the soundman. Sometimes it’s technical problems. Every once in awhile, you have to face the fact that the band just wasn’t up to the task.In reality, the good shows will far outnumber the bad. You have to learn from the mistakes. You have to trust your ears and instincts. Be analytical. Take the time to record or video several of your shows. Dissect the set. Be prepared to take some criticism. Choose your words carefully when critiquing your bandmates. Be open to making the appropriate changes. Be willing to rehearse these changes. You can’t always rely on your close circle of friends to tell you how well you’re doing.
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