Why don't lead singers have to foot the bill for the rest of the band?

Discussion in 'Bad Dog Cafe' started by Antigua Tele, May 12, 2019.

  1. chris m.

    chris m. Poster Extraordinaire

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    The typical Canadian is more humble and decent than most, that’s all. Because that’s the culture up in the north...
     
  2. Antigua Tele

    Antigua Tele Friend of Leo's

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    What's the risk? All the time spent promoting the band, or touring around in a van, time that could d be spent starting a family on time, or advancing in a career that will be satisfying and pay well. In my case, when I came to that fork in the road it was a no brainer, the job paid way too good to screw around on van tours, but for other guys, the choice is probably less obvious, and they should probably be thinking about their future, but instead they're giving themselves to a cause that will likely only ever serve the lead singer of the outfit.

    But you're right, they're easy to replace, because there is no shortage of backing musicians who seem willing to take more risk for less reward. Maybe they think they will be in the next Pearl Jam, where a lead singer like Eddie Vedder could leave the band high and dry if he wanted to, but they luck out with a benevolent leader who keeps the on, at some expense to the bottom line. The two fold risk payed off, and they do pretty well for themselves, though again, not as good as Eddie himself.
     
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  3. Ron R

    Ron R Friend of Leo's

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    3 of the 4 lead singers you cited are not original members of their groups, you know that right?
     
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  4. Antigua Tele

    Antigua Tele Friend of Leo's

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    It proves the theory, because you have not one, but two guys exploiting the backing band for what ultimately spawned successful solo careers. Phil, the lead singer, once again, became the band, screwing the other two guys for a second time. By the second time they got left high and dry, they were probably well off, but not as much so as Phil or Peter G.
     
    Last edited: May 12, 2019
  5. Antigua Tele

    Antigua Tele Friend of Leo's

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    In this case it doesn't matter how the group formed, because at the start the risk is the same, the group might be a big success, or they might fizzle out, and upon success, the lead singer will reap most of the rewards.
     
  6. Teleguy61

    Teleguy61 Friend of Leo's

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    It is so unfair!
    Everyone knows that the singing just fills the empty space between guitar solos.
     
  7. Texicaster

    Texicaster Tele-Meister

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    PLUS what are their expenses?

    A tambourine and a harmonica?!

    Some wimmens clothes...?

    :D

    TEX
     
  8. Ian T

    Ian T Tele-Holic

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    I recently learned about Max Martin. Do you know who he is?

    He is a Swedish songwriter/producer that has written and produced more number 1 singles than any other songwriter other than Lennon/McCartney. He has written hits for Katy Perry, Usher, Pink, Arianne Grande, Bieber, and more.

    I bet most of you don't know who he is. But you know the singers, even if you abhor the music.

    The singers are interchangeable. They just need to be marketable. No doubt there are many others that could step in should the producer choose them (#me too). The singer is the brand, the name on the track, and gets the fame. Meanwhile Max Martin writes and produces the tracks, tells them what to sing, autotunes, and handlers tell the #metoo participant how to behave, when to be and where, etc..

    The sidemen are just lackeys. Totally replaceable. No different than roadies. Know your role!
     
  9. Blue Bill

    Blue Bill Poster Extraordinaire Ad Free Member

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    You have a point, that an aspiring rock star can indeed exploit his bandmates, using them as stepping stones. As far as being fair or not, most musicians I've ever known aren't in it for the career opportunity, they just love the buzz of being onstage with other good musicians. If they wanted a well-paying, predictable career, they would be software engineers. For some people, being Alice Cooper's drummer in his high school band is a treasured experience, not something they feel somebody owes them something for.
     
    Last edited: May 12, 2019
  10. Antigua Tele

    Antigua Tele Friend of Leo's

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    The fact that Fleetwood Mac just managed to let Lindsey Buckingham go, and still stage a major tour, really goes to show that no guitarist is safe unless he's literally the headliner, like Joe B.

    Why do you people slum it in dive bars, playing for beer? They're hoping there will be a big payoff if they get lucky, and manage to attract a large fan base. But even if that happens, the fan base is going to follow the lead singer, it's his/her lottery to win.
     
  11. Antigua Tele

    Antigua Tele Friend of Leo's

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    In the blues genre, that's often how it is. "I'm feeling down, yeah..." then an eight minute blues solo follows.

    I'm past trying to make it in the music business now, but I think if I had been willing to work with a charismatic front man I'd have got a little farther, but then I'd have just advanced to the next stage of risk, which is hoping charismatic front man threw me bone and didn't just replace us with a cheaper band.
     
  12. Blue Bill

    Blue Bill Poster Extraordinaire Ad Free Member

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    duplicate
     
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  13. Antigua Tele

    Antigua Tele Friend of Leo's

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    The thing is, at least in my experience, much of it is objectively not fun, such as having to get by on a fraction of the income you'd make otherwise, living with bad roomates to make that happen, all the promotional work of being in a band, like finding gigs (or at least better gigs), writing new material, trying to put recordings together and figuring out how to press copies on the cheap, and then figuring out how to get them into appreciative hands, sell them for $1? For $20? (maybe these are antiquated concerns in 2019). If it was one long jam session with friends, that would be great, but then there's all the work, too.
     
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  14. studio1087

    studio1087 Telefied Silver Supporter

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    People relate to spoken words and people relate to stories in singing. People relate to the person who talks to them between songs. People state at the center or the focal point.

    You seem way too upset to me. If it really bugs you then start a 100% instrumental band or start taking some voice lessons. Change your environment.
     
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  15. SecretSquirrel

    SecretSquirrel Friend of Leo's Ad Free Member

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    My solution: an all-instrumental band.

    Ventures (and most surf bands)
    Shadows
    Los Straitjackets
    Booker T & the MGs
    etc...

    Heck, I think I prefer that instrumental stuff over most vocal-centered bands (excepting killer vocal groups like the Temptations etc.). And I don't sing myself, so for me, singers are kind of optional anyway.
     
  16. Blue Bill

    Blue Bill Poster Extraordinaire Ad Free Member

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    This is all true. For most full-time musicians, this is the reality of being a 99% musician. For the 1% that actually makes good money from their music, most of them did the van tours until it hurt. Except maybe Sting. Oh, and Mike Nesmith. (The percentages noted here are totally made up and may be inaccurate)

    I don't really have a cogent point to make, I just can't stop posting. o_O
     
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  17. Old Deaf Roadie

    Old Deaf Roadie Tele-Holic

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    If all they are going to do in the band is sing, then they should at least provide a PA system and/or rehearsal space. The rest of us have already made our gear investment.
     
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  18. Keefsdad

    Keefsdad Tele-Meister

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    Jagger is huge with the Stones. But his solo albums have mostly flopped commercially.
     
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  19. 3-Chord-Genius

    3-Chord-Genius Poster Extraordinaire

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    Because if the lead singer is calling the shots, he/she can decide to do, or not do, whatever he/she wants.
     
  20. etype

    etype Tele-Afflicted

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    Ah, so the bigger risk is that even if the band makes it big, everyone is expendable but the lead singer. Gotcha.

    Now it gets interesting. How does the supply of singers differ from other musicians? This is determined by things like the distribution of natural talent, the cost of the training needed be good enough to be in a legit band, and the expected payoff (which we agree is higher for the singer). So it looks like there may be more singers per band out there than other musicians and singers should get paid less. However, if the lead singer has to be, on average, better looking than the rest of the band, then that may make talented and good looking singers more scarce than other musicians.
     
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