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The Early Days of Forming a Band!

My early memories of creating bands with various players and friends are certainly fond ones. And, as is often the case, when one has more time and space from a long ago memory, it tends to get even fonder over time. This is certainly true of your current days, if in fact, they include the forming of some new musical partnerships on behalf of you and your playing buddies. These early days are also critical in terms of establishing how you may handle similar situations in the future, when it gets down to an even more “nitty-gritty” professional musical endeavor.

I do know that every band needs to feel like it has a “leader”, or someone who provides the moral as well as musical direction for the band. This is true, even with bands that are by necessity, true “democracies” as far as how each member feels about their contributions. In the end, there is still always a true “leader.” I mean, try to imagine Creedence Clearwater Revival without John Fogerty, or The Lovin’ Spoonful without John Sebastian, or the Byrds without Roger McGuinn…totally impossible! Yet, these were “bands” in the truest sense of the word, during a time when having a band was a rarer thing than it is today.

I know that all the early bands I formed were always centered around my approach and my music, and that any dissention back in those days seemed more like an “exercise in democracy” by those band members than anything else! In other words, sure, there were problems, but in the end, it was my musical decisions that stood. Also in the end, you could see that everyone was really glad at least that someone’s decision stood, as we were all then able to move on, and worry about the music that was what really mattered! Just remember that the music is paramount, and that spending too much time on the extra-curricular problems can only end up standing in the way. These days I see it happen way too often in bands I teach and guitar students I have, which is really a shame, because it’s too easy to get hung up on these kinds of things and destroy what may have become an incredible musical experience.

I think it’s a good idea to always do fun band things together too, as a good way of further bonding with each other and feeling like there is an actual consensus between all of you. Sitting around and trying to come up with band names is always a fun, and sometimes hysterically funny thing to do. I don’t think there has ever been a band-naming session that didn’t turn into a comic marathon of insanely funny stuff! And who knows, even sometimes this way, you’ll really come up with the real band name!

In any event, just remember that those early days of forming a band can be some of the most rewarding and memorable times, and are full of humor, camaraderie and most of all, great music! Enjoy the good times!

Posted: 6/10/2010 9:48:45 PM with Comments | Add Comment | Email Link | Permalink
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