I frequently see posts on here about band members who aren't putting in their share of the effort. The general consensus is to let them go. I just had to do that, so I figured I write about it. While it makes sense to let non-performing members go, it's still really hard to do it. We're a pretty good traditional country band, but our steel player was really unwilling to practice outside of rehearsal. We practice once a week, and at least 40% of the practice was devoted to rehashing things we'd gone over 100 times before. Almost uniformly, this would be due to our steel player. Chord changes, arrangements (we play most songs like the record, just adding in lead breaks, so this can be practiced at home), who plays what. It slowed our progress so much it was incredible. What finally pushed me over the edge was a rehearsal last week without him where we sounded fantasic. Tight as a drum. I figured that I was crazy for splitting our (small) pay with someone who was making us sound worse from lack of effort. So I finally let him go. While I feel bad, now that I've done it, I actually feel that next practice I need to apologize to the other band members about taking so long to do it. They've been complaining for awhile, and this is a problem I should have dealt with a long time ago. I'm glad I didn't lose any of the other members out of it. The moral of the story is that letting non-performing members go is harder, but you'll feel immediately better after you do it, and your band will be immediately better (and more fun). Furthermore, a band member who's holding the band back will eventually cause other people to lose interest. I should have done this a few months ago.