SO YOU WANT TO START A BAND!?

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SO YOU WANT TO START A BAND!?

Post  Admin on Thu Mar 13, 2008 11:12 am

Not Got A Band Yet?

If you're not in a band yet, but are an aspiring musician or singer, then keep on practicing, and asking around. Often your friends, music teachers or tutors know about other people who love music and might want to join a band.

So once youíve got yourself a band, it's all about the practice. Writing your own material also helps. You can write music individually, together as a band, or both. The more you write, the better you are going to get, and people are going to be even more impressed.

The Name

Thinking up a name can be tricky. Donít fall out over it, but having a name for your band is pretty important if you want people to remember you. Changing your bandís name every week might seem like fun, but how are your fans supposed to keep track of whatís going on?

When you have a band name, do a bit of research on the Internet to check that someone else hasnít already got it.

Showcase

A lot of venues wonít have you play a gig with them until theyíve heard a demo, so it's often worth spending a bit of time on this.

Use your best songs for your demo Ė perhaps that sounds obvious, but not all bands do. You can use a digital multitrack, or if you have a bit of cash, book a day at a studio. If youíve not done any studio stuff before, then make sure youíre going to get help from someone that knows what theyíre doing.

You could also use free online sites to showcase your music. You could create your own MySpace webpage for the band and upload some of your tracks. You could also use YouTube if you make any home-made videos to go with your songs.

To build up your confidence playing live try smaller venues around town, or get gigs playing for your family and friendsí birthdays, weddings, or at your school or youth club.

Feedback

Get your friends and family to give you their honest opinion on your performances. Really push them to pick out your weaknesses, and donít get annoyed if you donít like the criticisms you might get.

Contacts

Build up contacts at gigs. If there are people you donít know, ask them if they saw your set. They probably wonít hesitate as much as your family to tell you exactly what you were like - good or bad.

If people come up and talk to you about your set, be friendly Ė they could turn out to be journalists or A&R men, but even if theyíre not, itís important to be nice to potential fans, or theyíll tell all their friends not to like you either.

Advice From Other Bands

Get advice from other bands. No one knows better about what itís like to be in a band than people who actually are or have been in one.

Ask them how they went about getting gigs, or how they best write songs. If you know bands who have signed record deals or even just been in discussion with record labels, get all the gossip Ė itíll all be useful to know.

Manager

When starting out, there often isnít much need for a band to have a manager, and being able to afford to pay one seems pretty unlikely too. But thereís usually a band member willing to take up the role of booking gigs and being the point of contact for the band.

If you know bands that seem to have good management then use this connection and see if theyíll take you on as well. But donít worry about not having a manager, because plenty bands get signed without one. A manager can help, but itís not going to make you sound magically ten times better or anything.

--Mrsgig Admin team via the BBC--
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