Open mic jams observations

THX1123

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Everyone goes for different reasons: shake off the rust, prove to themselves/a few friends they can do it, network, entertain the crowd, etc.

Many of those entertaining people is the least concern. That was often way down on my list when I did it. Not %%^^ing up was at the top of the list.

The problem is most basement bands get together once or twice and expect to GIG twice a month with a handful of songs and no, I mean zero, clue what it takes to get there and get your crap set up....assuming you even have a place to gig.

#sigh
I think we are in agreement? Yeah, everyone goes for different reasons.

I guess my question is this: Why play in front of other people if you aren't concerned about whether they enjoy it, or are entertained? Doesn't it then become only about the person doing the playing? If it is only about the person playing, then why is a public performance even necessary?
 

Flat6Driver

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I think we are in agreement? Yeah, everyone goes for different reasons.

I guess my question is this: Why play in front of other people if you aren't concerned about whether they enjoy it, or are entertained? Doesn't it then become only about the person doing the playing? If it is only about the person playing, then why is a public performance even necessary?


If I want to be kind in my response, I'll say some people are just doing it for the experience. The added pressure of not screwing it up, one shot at pulling it off, etc. If you read in Band Wagon, a "gig" is worth 10 rehearsals. So, forcing yourself to get it right on stage, is the goal.

If I want to be negative, the internet forums are full of "if you're not playing in front of people...you might as well not play at all". (less so this forum).

When I used to do it, like I said, entertaining the crowd was way down on the list of concerns. I don't want to be heckled off stage, but the crowd at an open mic is often there to perform themselves and just biding time until they can do so. Sometimes, an open mic is a good place to try out that song that you like but your band doesn't or won't fit the genre you play in. You just want to play it. If the crowd likes it, bonus. Now that snark aside, I do enjoy it when I had people sing along. Or clap, or say nice things afterwards. Or tell me they liked some semi-obscure song. But it wasn't always my goal. On the other extreme, I would attend one of these where this eccentric guy would sign up first. He's set up a laptop in front of him (we think he was live streaming it to somewhere - another planet?) and would pull out a fiddle or a bizzare stringed instrument and play 10 minutes of atonal weirdness. Not against a backing track, not with a loop, just a weird free form of sounds. It was like an Andy Kaufman head fake set to music. Then he'd pack up and leave. I don't think he gave a care what folks thought of it. There was little entertainment value, unless he was entertained but us reacting to this weird mess.
 

MisterZ

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A while back I posted about an "open jam" that I went to that was really an "open mic". I went in expecting to play with other people, get loose, and have a good time. As it turned out, since my name was first on the sign in sheet I got to go first - and since I wasn't expecting to be solo I hadn't prepared anything. So I blundered my way through "I'm Happy Just To Dance With You" and packed it in.

i have no desire to do open mic night, but I would LOVE to do an open jam. There are folks here from Central and Western NY - any open jams happening?
 




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