Band Troubles... am I crazy?

Discussion in 'Bad Dog Cafe' started by dragonfly66, May 19, 2019.

  1. dragonfly66

    dragonfly66 Friend of Leo's Silver Supporter

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    So I joined a band as a singer and rhythm guitar player. I came from an acoustic guitar background. I had been in another band for a short time (less than a year) until the lead guitar player and the drummer had a falling out and the band was no more.

    I'm practicing with the band and realize they practice really really loud! My attempts to get us to practice not so loud in a room that is the size of a one car garage didn't work. I was told that this is the quietest they've ever practiced.

    So I got ear plugs Etymotic ER20, Alpine MusicSafe Pro, Etymotic ER20XS, and most recently Westone TRU trying to find some ear plugs that make it possible to hear my guitar and vocals through the monitors. I can barely hear my guitar and the vocals are never clear enough. To get my vocals loud enough with the ear plugs the mic starts feedbacking.

    So I invest in an in-ear system, which is not cheap. This seems to be the best solution. I get to protect my hearing while also hearing everyone clearly. I am stationed in the middle in front of the drummer so ear protection is a must. I am not sure why the rest of the band thinks it is ok to not have hearing protection, but it is not my job to police people's choices.

    For whatever reason the lead guitar player has deemed my setup "complicated" and has convinced the bass player that somehow my setup is "complicated". It is annoying. During one practice I told them to stop saying it is complicated because it is just one extra cable to the board.

    We have a gig coming up with the venue has their own PA and the first thing the lead guitar player says is, oh you may not be able to use your in-ears. Why the f--k is that the first thing that popped in to your head? Anyway, the bass player is the one who gets us gigs and he is going to checkout the board and ask any questions. I let him know that I wanted to make sure there was an open aux for my in-ears.

    The response was, "We won't have much time to mix them, do you think it [in-ears] is practical for this gig?" WTF, one extra cable and I do my own aux mixing, I'm the only one hearing this mix. What in the world is impractical about that?

    I let the band know that in-ears are a requirement for me so that I can protect my hearing and to hear myself clearly. I'm exhausted by them telling me my setup is complicated and me having to explain why it isn't complicated. I do not understand why they keep making a big deal out of something that doesn't really affect them. I plug one cable into the board, twist knobs to mix the inputs and done.

    This "it's so complicated" has happened so often that I am ready to quit this band, because they are causing me anxiety which makes going to practice and gigs not fun.

    Am I crazy for wanting to protect my hearing and also wanting to hear myself clearly while playing guitar and singing?
     
  2. JeffBlue

    JeffBlue Tele-Afflicted

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    Protecting your hearing is paramount. That is your right, let the others damage their ears.
     
  3. rangercaster

    rangercaster Friend of Leo's

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    I would quit and then join a band composed of professional musicians ...
     
  4. Keefsdad

    Keefsdad Tele-Meister

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    Not at all. I'm not sure i could play in a band where I had to wear earplugs, even in rehearsal.
     
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  5. Bones

    Bones Telefied Ad Free Member

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    you gotta get out of this.
     
  6. Milspec

    Milspec Friend of Leo's

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    Sometimes bands trade talent for volume...this might be one of them. It sounds like you have the wrong chemistry for this band and would be better off looking to join another. Playing out should be fun for you, if it isn't with this band, it never will be.
     
  7. Steve 78

    Steve 78 Tele-Afflicted

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    No, you're not crazy. I played in a band where we were too loud for the singer and it's a big problem that needs to be resolved. A lot of people here will tell you that the band is too loud and should turn down. I don't think that's necessarily true - it depends on the band and musical style, etc.

    I think you've really well to come up with a workable solution and the negativity you are getting makes it sound like there is "the band" and then there's you, which doesn't cut it in my book.

    So I would be asking myself why I am in this band and how hard it would be to quit and join another? Being in a band can be tough but it's a lot easier if you feel your bandmates have got your back. Good luck!
     
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  8. Doctorx33

    Doctorx33 Tele-Afflicted

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    Play the gig, quit the band.
     
  9. Larry F

    Larry F Doctor of Teleocity Vendor Member

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    About all you can do without causing a fight is to just really get the setup down to no time at all. If it can seem as if you are not taking extra time and involving others, then who is to complain about complexity of setup then?

    That said, it is not good when one or two guys start fixating on some problem with you, especially one so small as this.

    My advice is to work through it, and try not to quit the band over it. This should be thought of as a fairly minor quibble and adjustment, something not worth quitting a band over, if, in fact, that is something on the table.
     
  10. telefunken

    telefunken Friend of Leo's

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    This is why I'm not in a band
     
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  11. ecoast

    ecoast Tele-Holic

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    rolls pm50
    put it on your pedal board
    run both mic and guitar out to wherever

    your welcome
     
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  12. nojazzhere

    nojazzhere Poster Extraordinaire

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    I'm with everybody who says you're simply playing with the wrong group of guys. Are they SO GOOD that you're willing to put up with this "garbage"? Practicing (or gigging) so loud is unprofessional, complaining about your resourcefulness at coming up with a solution is beyond unprofessional. Get out while you're young and still have your hearing! ;)
     
  13. stratoman1

    stratoman1 Tele-Afflicted

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    If they can't figure out why a musician wants to protect their hearing then there isn't much you can do about that. You might need to find another band

    Are these guys kinda young still and you aren't ?
     
  14. Flaneur

    Flaneur Friend of Leo's

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    Amateur Hour. Assert yourself at the gig, however long and 'complicated' the setup- and then walk away. If they're lucky, they'll get a clue, before Tinnitus sets in.....
     
  15. dragonfly66

    dragonfly66 Friend of Leo's Silver Supporter

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    This is great advice, though they think my pedalboard is complicated too. I haven't even told you the other stuff about our mixer situation. So this latest, "it's so complicated" complaint is just piled on to other stuff, which makes it a bigger deal than it should be.

    I do setup my own gear and I do it quickly. There is nothing that takes an exorbitant amount of time. In fact, I've suggested ways we can get in and out of gigs quicker, but no one read them or took the time to understand them, except the drummer. I got nothing from the bass player and from the lead guitarist I got basically, it was too many words for him to read and we would discuss it at band practice. I brought it up at band practice and basically my ideas were dismissed. I actually thought about what took us a long time the last time we gigged and had ideas to address those specific areas.

    I am used to working alone as a solo artist so joining a band was a big shift. I've mostly hung back because my experience in a band has been very little and I'm getting used to band dynamics. We play classic rock, vintage R&B, and some alt rock covers. This whole "it's so complicated" stuff has been going on for months, ever since the lead guitar player arrived actually.

    These are good questions to ask. I'm in the band because it was fun to play and sing, to be accountable every week, learn material I otherwise wouldn't have learned, perform in front of people, having a band behind you instead of just an acoustic guitar.

    If I quit this band I don't know I would want to jump back into another band quickly. Having had this experience I now have a better idea of what to look for in a band I would want to join though.

    I'm seriously considering this.
     
  16. dragonfly66

    dragonfly66 Friend of Leo's Silver Supporter

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    No, I'm 53, the lead guitar player is 49/50, Bass player is 58, drummer is in his 60s. They have been in bands that have their ears ringing for days. They tell me this to try to normalize the levels at which we play and practice. What is so good about ringing ears. They know it's not good for your hearing, they don't care.
     
  17. stratoman1

    stratoman1 Tele-Afflicted

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    I figured they were just young and dumb. Evidenrly they're just a bit hardheaded
     
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  18. schmee

    schmee Poster Extraordinaire

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    An early red flag will be a huge one later.
     
  19. jrblue

    jrblue Tele-Afflicted

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    They're idiots, and clearly determined to act like idiots. Seems like they're threatened by your attention to detail and are ganging up in knuckle-dragging deliberate ignorance. Everyone's having trouble forming bands as there aren't enough players out there, so you'll have to make the tough decision as to what you want most. You may have to protect your early with crap fidelity plugs. Sorry those guys are such nimrods.
     
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  20. 1300 E Valencia

    1300 E Valencia Friend of Leo's

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    When they ask why you quit, tell them "It's so complicated".
     
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