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How Many Singers in Your Band?

Discussion in 'Band Wagon' started by alnico357, Feb 26, 2021.

  1. teletail

    teletail Friend of Leo's

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    Actually it doesn’t sound rude at all. It sounds like you set certain standards for people you play with. I don’t know when that became a bad thing. Why would wanting to play with people that can play and sing competently make you a dick??
     
  2. bottlenecker

    bottlenecker Friend of Leo's

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    I will never be in a band like this again. When everyone has equal influence, you can record a whole album and someone splits before it's mixed, and that's the end of it.
    I will sideman in a band where someone else has got it together and I just show up and play, or I'll play in my own band where I'm the leader.
    Currently I have my own 6 piece band, (with 3 singers). I write the songs, figure out where we'll play, all the recording stuff, everything. The other five just have to show up and play. I have played in some of their bands in the past, and probably will again. These songs and this band name are mine and can always be used by me, and include whoever is playing with me.
    I find this is the easiest way to stay friends and have fun, and have the most freedom.
    Either the creative freedom of leader, or the easier more literal freedom of sideman.
     
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  3. Chiogtr4x

    Chiogtr4x Doctor of Teleocity

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    Right now in my own band ( and duo) I am the lead singer.
    Other members sing lead on a couple of tunes, and I'm fine, if anybody wants to sing lead- it just doesn't seem to happen much.

    In the loose bluegrass band I'm in, The Raccoons, everyone takes turns singing ( Farmers Market gigs)- we go in a circle.

    In the '90's I was in a Blues band ( guitar/s, harp, bass, drums- bar gigs) and we each took turns singing.
    Our bass player made up sets alternating each of us. It was fun!
     
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  4. Fiesta Red

    Fiesta Red Poster Extraordinaire

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    The great Charlie Sexton said (and I’m paraphrasing), “A band cannot be a democracy—everyone can have a voice, but somebody has to lead.”

    I’ve used that as a guide for bands I’ve been in since I’ve heard it.
     
  5. brookdalebill

    brookdalebill Tele Axpert Ad Free Member

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    The bandleader I toured western Canada with insisted that everyone in the 5 piece band sing.
    Everyone but the drummers we had did.
    It paid off.
    I became the lead singer for two weeks when the singer, and keyboard player/singer both left suddenly.
    The singer fell in love with a local bar maid, and the keyboard guy's Dad died, and his Mom had Alzheimer's and needed his help.
    It was an education, for me.
    I did OK, but I was greatly relieved when a better/more extroverted singer-guy joined up.
    I think everyone should sing at least a song a set
     
    Last edited: Feb 27, 2021
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  6. Old Deaf Roadie

    Old Deaf Roadie Friend of Leo's Silver Supporter

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    Does this include the band members who think they can sing?
     
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  7. Chicago Matt

    Chicago Matt Friend of Leo's

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    That sounds ideal to me. I envy you. I was in a band like this for several years and loved it. After that I did a couple of years in the musical, "Pump Boys and Dinettes". I did several runs with different cast members. It was a requirement of the producers that all six members could sing lead and harmonize. It was a joy. I was musical director in one production and that was especially rewarding. It made it easy. These years really spoiled me.

    While I was always comfortable as a harmony singer, it was the same for me most of my "career". But now, fronting a trio, I sing 80% of the lead vocals, mostly out of necessity. It's been good for me and, surprisingly, people seem to like it.

    I agree. It's the main drawback in the trio I play with. The drummer sings very well and can also harmonize. But the bass player, although a great bassist for us, cannot really carry a song, or stay on a harmony part. So three parts are out, as well as more variety and strength in the lead vocal slot. I long for an additional member that can really play AND sing.
     
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  8. T Prior

    T Prior Poster Extraordinaire

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    At least 3, all harmonize . But we are all not equal when it comes to a 2 or 3 hour primary voice ! 2 of us ( one is me ) can cover songs but its not the same as when the front guy covers them.
     
  9. Call Me Al

    Call Me Al Tele-Meister

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    Blues band: core trio with occasional guest singers. Guitar and drummer do most of the leads, I do a few. Lots of 2 and 3 part harmonies.

    Bluegrass band: 4 members, all do leads. lots of 3 or 4 part harmonies.

    (I play bass in both)
     
  10. Flat6Driver

    Flat6Driver Friend of Leo's

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    A leader doesnt have to be an overbearing ass....just has to help keep things moving. I guess I'm the leader of my band (we rehearse/jam at my house) but I just keep things moving along else we devolve into chit chat and the time isn't spent playing.

    We have three guys that sing in my band. That, frankly, is an area where folks should focus a bit more, but we don't. We're also not currently gigging so vocals are something to do between bitchin guitar solos.
     
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  11. BerkshireDuncan

    BerkshireDuncan Tele-Meister

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    We've a solid non-instrumental front woman, and the rest of us do what we can with BV's.
    Luckily I've not encountered any deluded divas in the last few bands :)
     
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  12. Flat6Driver

    Flat6Driver Friend of Leo's

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    I've got some of that in my own band. Three of us will sing. One fellow probably needs a little more work on it than he puts in. I've stopped caring. It went from jam session to playing out and making a little, very little, money to back to the jam session. Which ends up being more like poker night with instruments. I don't put the effort in week to week like I wanted to/should....I got a new job which leaves me with Zoom headaches at the end of the day, everyone is in the house all the time and I can't be motivated. My kids will be out of the house in about 5 years, so poker night is actually a good place for me right now.


    We have a harp player who sings, he pushed to gig out. He sold the gig and we played. I kept the train on the tracks with the set lists, what time to show up, setting up the stage. He brought the crowd. He was the only one that brought the crowd. I like the stuff he picks to sing, I get to play harder rhythms that I could when I sing.

    Our bass player is a professional musician when you could make a living at it, he sings but not with us. When he first started, I wondered what he must think of our sound. He's used the experience to learn the bass and get out of the house.

    It's usually fun, but I won't post any recordings here. ;)
     
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  13. fendrguitplayr

    fendrguitplayr Doctor of Teleocity Silver Supporter

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    Three
     
  14. johnnylaw

    johnnylaw Tele-Afflicted

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    In “my” Americana three-piece, two of us sing.
    In “my” psychedelic garage pop art-rock band, we’re four for four.
     
  15. alnico357

    alnico357 Tele-Afflicted

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  16. El Marin

    El Marin Friend of Leo's

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    That's it... I am too old and busy to cope with people, first not professional (at their level, of course), limited (Even in mind) and not serious enough.

    Totally agree. That makes the set fresher and you can rest a bit. In my covers trio, the drummer is learning guitar and we are trying to make a CCR song where we change. He picks my guitar and plays it and sings and I sit on the drumset, play it and do the chorus!!!
     
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  17. Phrygian77

    Phrygian77 Friend of Leo's Gold Supporter

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    Four singers in our six piece, and only one who can friggin' sing harmony. Me and the bassist are the only ones that don't sing. There's been a few songs I've wanted to sing, but I haven't been able to get them to do them yet.

    The last thing we need also is another open microphone on stage. I know you guys know how that goes.
     
  18. Ron C

    Ron C Tele-Holic

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    Same thing in my main band since 2013. Having all four of us sing keeps things interesting for the audience - if someone doesn't like the singer in one song, there will be another singer coming in 4 minutes!

    Everyone's got a good ear and values the quality of the arrangement over individual flash, so harmonies are strong, creating a much fuller sound. Good, simple in ear monitoring helps a ton.

    And in the other band, no one sings. Both great bands and get excellent crowd reactions in the small bars we play at.
     
  19. Manual Slim

    Manual Slim Friend of Leo's

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    Two in one and three in the other
     
  20. RollingBender

    RollingBender Tele-Afflicted

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    2 bands. 7-piece with 6 singers and a 3-piece with 7 singers (both the bass player and I use harmony pedals in that band).
     
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