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When worlds collide

Posted: Tue Dec 03, 2019 12:12 pm
by Mikebmiller
So I got a call about a month ago to play a Christmas show at a small theater about an hour from home. 8 days - $800. Not Broadway pay, but not bad for this area and I never turn down $800. I was looking forward to doing the show. Then they sent the music. 30 tunes on the show - only 9 or 10 have any horn parts. They basically found a bunch of videos on youtube and used them as a basis for putting together a show. There is no score. The rest of the band doesn't even have music - they are trying to play by ear from listening to the videos - some with better success than others. They got a guy to transcribe some horn parts for some of the tunes. And the other horn player is a sax guy who doesn't even read music. The first rehearsal was a 6 hour mess, although last night was somewhat better.

I guess maybe this is the way that the guitar and drum crowd puts music together. I have never played a show where you couldn't ask a simple question like what somebody is doing at bar 32 - they don't have a bar 32. I guess folks that play in rock bands regularly are used to this sort of thing, but it is driving me nuts.

Wish me luck.

Re: When worlds collide

Posted: Tue Dec 03, 2019 12:22 pm
by paulyg
If I were you, I'd be questioning the existence of the $800 after that first rehearsal... and with no rental book, you have no collateral!

Also, I think I've met that sax guy.

Re: When worlds collide

Posted: Tue Dec 03, 2019 2:25 pm
by JohnL
paulyg wrote:
Tue Dec 03, 2019 12:22 pm
Also, I think I've met that sax guy.
I think "Sax Guy" is closely related to Florida Man

Re: When worlds collide

Posted: Tue Dec 03, 2019 5:19 pm
by StephenK
I've played with some pretty good guitarists who think real musicians don't need printed music.

Re: When worlds collide

Posted: Tue Dec 03, 2019 5:24 pm
by Bach5G
I’ve played with that sax guy too. Improv means blow loud and wiggle your fingers quickly.

Re: When worlds collide

Posted: Tue Dec 03, 2019 6:23 pm
by BGuttman
StephenK wrote:
Tue Dec 03, 2019 5:19 pm
I've played with some pretty good guitarists who think real musicians don't need printed music.
Yeah, but they only play in 3 keys: D, A, and E.

Re: When worlds collide

Posted: Tue Dec 03, 2019 6:28 pm
by Mikebmiller
Well I got here tonight and.found out they replaced the sax player. The new guy is someone I have played with before and he is really excellent.

Re: When worlds collide

Posted: Tue Dec 03, 2019 8:59 pm
by Mikebmiller
StephenK wrote:
Tue Dec 03, 2019 5:19 pm
I've played with some pretty good guitarists who think real musicians don't need printed music.
Oh there are lots of great guitarists and drummers who can’t read a note of music. But when you have 8 singers and a 6 piece band it is really helpful to be able to say we are starting at a certain point and everyone knows where that is.

Re: When worlds collide

Posted: Wed Dec 04, 2019 8:17 am
by cmcslide
I'm playing a Christmas show right now with a group of musicians, some of whom read and some don't. Also, there are some that read Nashville numbers charts rather than standard notation. Generally, we call out a spot in a song by saying something like "second bar of the first verse" along with a measure number. None of these players are slouches, though - everybody showed up for the first rehearsal fully prepared.

Re: When worlds collide

Posted: Wed Dec 04, 2019 8:44 am
by Mikebmiller
Hey cmcslide - looks like we are at opposite ends of the same state. I am up in Spartanburg. My wife has cousins in Myrtle.

Re: When worlds collide

Posted: Wed Dec 04, 2019 8:56 am
by cmcslide
Playing the Christmas show at the Carolina Opry right now - if you're down for a visit come check us out! Or any time you do make it here, look me up...

Re: When worlds collide

Posted: Wed Dec 04, 2019 9:19 pm
by Mikebmiller
Halfway through this week. I am really beginning to wish that someone would write some new Christmas songs.

Re: When worlds collide

Posted: Thu Dec 05, 2019 5:54 am
by afugate
Mikebmiller wrote:
Wed Dec 04, 2019 9:19 pm
Halfway through this week. I am really beginning to wish that someone would write some new Christmas songs.
Every year there are new Christmas songs released. Most are awful. Some are just merely tiresome. :roll:

When translated to instrumental/band music, it's "hard to make a silk purse out of a sow's ear..."

It reminds me of when our daughter first started playing trombone. I bought her some play-along CDs so she could have fun while practicing. After a while, she asked for a Taylor Swift book, so I found one. Two days later she says, "Dad, these are boring!" :lol:

--Andy in OKC

Re: When worlds collide

Posted: Thu Dec 05, 2019 7:17 am
by Mikebmiller
The set list for this thing is like what you would hear on one of those easy listening stations that starts playing Christmas music in September and doesn't stop until March.

I find that there are several kinds of gigs. Some you do for free or little pay because you enjoy the music and the folks you are playing with. Some are paid and still good fun, like most of the pit shows I have done. Others you do strictly for the money. This has definitely evolved into one those gigs that you do strictly for the money. Nothing against the organizers - I realize that making the trombone player's life interesting is probably not high on the list of things they consider when planning a show.

Re: When worlds collide

Posted: Thu Dec 05, 2019 5:04 pm
by StevenC
Mikebmiller wrote:
Thu Dec 05, 2019 7:17 am
I find that there are several kinds of gigs. Some you do for free or little pay because you enjoy the music and the folks you are playing with. Some are paid and still good fun, like most of the pit shows I have done. ...
Yeah, that's an amazing thing about pit work. The music is often a blast, and it pays!

Re: When worlds collide

Posted: Fri Dec 06, 2019 9:29 pm
by Mikebmiller
Well I have to say that things came together pretty well for our opening night tonight. The band got pretty tight and the singers were excellent.