Can't Miss Set Openers (Cover Bands)

Discussion in 'Band Wagon' started by Roger Tessier, Oct 23, 2011.

  1. Roger Tessier

    Roger Tessier Tele-Meister

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    What songs does your Cover Band/ Bar Band open your night with and why did you choose that? What does the song say or tell the audience about you?
     
  2. roscoestring

    roscoestring Tele-Holic

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    I never start with the same song that I started the last gig with. Also, I don't do bars but I do covers. Yesterday I started with a Dan Seals song - "I Won't Be Blue Anymore". I was catering to an older crowd that was more into country than anything else. I didn't want to scare them off with the first song. I did a lot of rock covers but did them with a country flavor. I did the Who song "Mama's Got a Squeezebox", I Don't Want To Be Alone Tonight - Dr. Hook, It Never Rains In Southern California, Knock Three Times, and traditional country songs by Hank Sr. and Jr., Faded Love, When You Say Nothing At All.

    I don't know what these songs say about me, but I was singing to people in the 50 - 80 age group and I kept them there in their seats (except the dancers). I was asked to come back an hour later and do another set. I ended up playing for about 7 hours yesterday.

    I actually went back today to help out with a memorial service. Played there for another 3 hours. All Gospel.
     
  3. String Tree

    String Tree Doctor of Teleocity

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    It is all about what WE feel like playing.

    All of us get bored easily, so we make it a point to mix it up.
    We make set lists. But if we show-up and aren't feeling that list (because of the energy/audience in the room, it gets tossed and we just go for it.

    Hope that helps.

    ~ ST
     
  4. MN Punk

    MN Punk Tele-Holic

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    I'm constantly TRYING to mix it up with my cover band, but both the band and our fans & friends seem to be happiest if we open our first set with "Add It Up" by the Violent Femmes.
     
  5. ce24

    ce24 Poster Extraordinaire

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    all shook up /hound dog medley.....works great for us
     
  6. GigsbyBoyUK

    GigsbyBoyUK Friend of Leo's

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    I've found the first song is actually pretty unimportant. It seems to take a couple of songs for people to start to get into it anyway. But maybe that's because we aren't very good!
     
  7. PinewoodRo

    PinewoodRo Tele-Afflicted

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    In a pub/club/party its either 'Rocks Off' by Primal Scream or 'The Pretender' by the Foo Fighters - gets 'em going! For a wedding (we do those ocasionally) its 'Whistle for the Choir' by the Fratellis - eases them in gently : )
     
  8. StoogeSurfer

    StoogeSurfer Tele-Afflicted

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    "Let's Play House" makes a nice opener for a bunch of genres if you can adequately channel an inner Elvis.
     
  9. Old Cane

    Old Cane Poster Extraordinaire

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    Might be Born Under a Bad Sign, might be Route 66, might be a slow one that just lets the set build up to the firey inferno that I create with my playing.....yeah, the last one.
     
  10. Rhubarb Red

    Rhubarb Red Tele-Meister

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    Hard To Handle, with long drum intro...
     
  11. A.B.Negative

    A.B.Negative Friend of Leo's

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    Great song!
     
  12. Oakville Dave

    Oakville Dave Friend of Leo's

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    My band, Groove Hammer, is a 9 piece band with a horn section, so we naturally want to showcase the horns. For us, openers are about establishing who we are, getting people's attention, and closers are about keeping people so happy with the band that they decide to stay through the break, eat and drink, and stay for more of the show, because when it's all said and done, a band's job is to bring people into the bar and keep them there to have a good time and spend their money!! Hopefully you're successful and your audience base grows, the bar makes more money, and you do too!

    We focus on Soul, Classic Rock, R & B, and Funk. We often high energy songs instead of ballads as openers for the first couple sets (ballads we often slip into the third of fourth spot for a change) and we always end our sets with a high energy number or two that people know and love. Since our 2nd set generally emphasizes funk - we tear through 7 or 8 funk faves in the second half of the set that leaves the dancers happily exhausted - and ends with some classic rock like Hard To Handle and My Own Way To Rock, we often start the last set with a slow song like Waiting On The World To Change or even Holdin' Back The Years fo a change of pace, then up the speed and intensity to a blazing finish of the night.

    Check us out on YouTube - Search "Groove Hammer," NOT "Groovehammer," or "Groove Hammers"!!-------------

    Gimme Some Lovin'
    25 or 6 to 4
    Knock On Wood
    The Letter
    My Own Way To Rock
    Hard To Handle
    Funky Nassau
    Hey Bartender
    Flip Flop & Fly
    Long Train Runnin'
     
  13. Old Cane

    Old Cane Poster Extraordinaire

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    That's a nice set.

    Gimme Some Lovin'
    25 or 6 to 4
    Knock On Wood
    The Letter
    My Own Way To Rock
    Hard To Handle
    Funky Nassau
    Hey Bartender
    Flip Flop & Fly
    Long Train Runnin'
     
  14. Telefone

    Telefone Tele-Holic

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    I'd be more concerned with what you open your 2nd set with.
    1st set they are still coming in the door. the second will determine if they stay for the third.
    We mix it up but
    "jammin me", "I know a Little", "The Breeze" all work pretty well. Among others.
     
  15. TC6969

    TC6969 Friend of Leo's

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    I disagree.

    You should hit the stage running and knock them out of their seats, then when they get up and start asking about the truck that hit them, you hit them again!

    THEN you should slow things down just a little and let them catch their breath.

    The first songs set things up for the evening and If you kick off with some yawner or Mustang Sally BS, then that mood is what youre stuck with for 4 hours.
     
  16. Old Cane

    Old Cane Poster Extraordinaire

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    Another one that doesn't like Wilson Pickett. Who'd a think it.

    Look, some of you treat a bar like a "concert". If you're all about playing a "venue" then yeah, go ahead and rock their socks off. If you're like me and play bars, and call then bars, then people are wondering in and out ALL NIGHT LONG. Around here they don't pay $10 or $15 to come see then band. Which means they might stay or they might not. So, EVERY song needs to be good and keep their attention. If you don't then your crowd migrates on to the waffle house.
     
  17. TeleTim911

    TeleTim911 Friend of Leo's

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    Someone posted a thread about a band that opens up with "Freebird" (complete song) and then asks, "Any requests?". I thought that was hilarious.

    I always like to grab their attention. Last band I was in (mostly country some classic rock) we opened with "That's How Country Boys Roll" by Billy Currington. It's labeled as a country song, but it's right on the verge of rock.
     
  18. fezz parka

    fezz parka ---------------------------

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  19. Tonemonkey

    Tonemonkey Poster Extraordinaire

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    Last 2 gigs - Long Train Running

    2 gigs before - Foo Fighters - No Way Back

    Variety is the Spice of Life.
     
  20. JCSouthpawtele

    JCSouthpawtele Friend of Leo's

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    Here is what you need to think about. Volume and tempo on the start. Mid tempo rocker that get the patrons attention, and nothing too heavy or ballads.

    A few that come to mind are.

    Cumbersome-7 Mary 3
    Hey Jealausy-Gin Blossoms
     
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