Went to jam with some guys

Discussion in 'Bad Dog Cafe' started by noname_dragon, Nov 8, 2019 at 9:39 AM.

  1. noname_dragon

    noname_dragon Tele-Meister

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    and it was one of those jam on a chord, or a riff, or a 1-4-5 hypnotic groove on a 10 minute beat thing etc... basically whatever comes to mind. After about an hour or so of that, we were talking and having a beer. One guy talked about improvisation and the other guy said we try to repeat something we did last time and it's never the same. They asked me what I thought. I said that it had been a very long time since I'd been at a freewheeling jam like this, and it was kinda fun. I said I usually play songs. They burst out laughing!
    I laughed too and it blew my mind.
     
  2. 2HBStrat

    2HBStrat TDPRI Member

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    Jams like that can be fun and a good way to come up with parts that can become songs. Record your jams...
     
  3. Boxla

    Boxla Tele-Meister

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    Interesting. My experience with playing with others goes back to middle school, I'm now 44. I was in a band in middle school, high school, college and after college. All of those bands were original music oriented and all practice times revolved around working on our songs. It was/is work. About 5 years ago I found myself in my first cover band actually more of a tribute band to Sublime. I love it mainly because the guys in the band are great and the Sublime catalog (our last show in Sept we played 44 Sublime tunes) is super fun to play on guitar. But when we're not playing actual songs, this band does a lot of jamming. We just start and go from there and it's the most fun and refreshing thing ever. After a practice I feel the same way I do after a round of golf or a fishing trip etc.. It's just a nice get away, have fun, clear your mind and create cool music type of thing. I've never had those feelings previously after band practice. One big difference from these guys to my previous band mates is that no one is a perfectionist. All simply go with the flow and no matter how sloppy something might be, in the end everyone agrees, "hey that sounded pretty good". It sounds like your guys might be of the same mindset, which I think is important. You can't really have a whole bunch of perfectionist in a wild and crazy improv jam session. Everyone has to be able to just let go and enjoy the good stuff that comes out and the not so good stuff.
     
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  4. GuitLoop

    GuitLoop Tele-Meister

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    Replace your friends with a looper pedal ;)
     
  5. darkwaters

    darkwaters Tele-Afflicted

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    Yes, but will a looper pedal bring beer ? ;)
     
  6. jhundt

    jhundt Doctor of Teleocity

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    I spent much of my youth doing that, and loving it. We had a group and we played songs (VU and MC5, mostly, and some Alice Cooper, Bob Seger, Mitch Ryder,Stones). We practiced them as much as needed, then we went for long free-wheel jams. Sometimes they would go on for hours. We were just a three-piece guitar-bass-drums. My brother (bass) led us into some jazz places, like Pharoah Sanders. I would try to turn it into the Watts 103rd St Rhythm Band or the Tighten Up; the drummer would be Memphis Soul Stewing it. But it would all start twisting and turning and going every which way. I loved those days.
     
  7. mkdaws32

    mkdaws32 Tele-Meister Ad Free Member

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    I gotta admit that jams like that are fun for me - for about five minutes. Then I get board ;). Actually not strictly true - depends on the jam and players involved.

    The most I ever enjoyed playing was with a band that did all original material. The keyboardist and I wrote all of the songs - both in collaboration and in isolation. Then the whole band would work the arrangements out. It was a phenomenal group of musicians that I probably didn’t appreciate enough at the time. The songs were tight and well arranged. Everyone played with full confidence and no ego. After a good show the “high” was unbelievable.
     
  8. beninma

    beninma Friend of Leo's Silver Supporter

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    I wish I could get the group I play/practice with to do that once in a while.. not all the time but sometimes.

    We stick very strictly to playing covers and singing them always with no solos. It has a lot to do with everyone's playing level though.

    Gotta try some of the other get togethers in the area.

    There's almost always a little of this at my guitar lessons with my teacher. If he's asked me to work on a solo he'll jam on the chords while I play the solo back for him and vise versa. Or he'll say he's going to play the chords and he wants me to try and improvise in the correct key usually with trying to work in figures from a particular song/guitarist I've been studying. If he's asked me to work on a particular rhythm part he'll usually start soloing over it while I play it back.

    I really can't do this at a fast tempo though.. my improvised stuff is always fairly slow.
     
  9. Mike Eskimo

    Mike Eskimo Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    There’s a third way.

    I always hear “jam“ as people vamping for a long time and everybody taking turns to solo. Or rather, waiting around for their turn to solo.

    We played last night for the first time since August and did everything off the cuff. An instrumental version Of can’t find my way home, an R&B kind of a thing with improv lyrics by one of our singers, and then two long Kraut rock improvs.

    The Krautrock stuff is the most fun and what we tend to focus on when we’re doing something improv. No solos. Mekanik beat. Usually minor to major and back.
     
  10. getbent

    getbent Telefied Ad Free Member

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    jamming can be a conversation or a series of speeches. When it is a conversation, everyone listens and the goal is understanding and sharing and adding (often by playing smaller chords, tinier figures) but each contributing to the whole... when it is a series of speeches... it is part playing and focusing on playing your part 'right' so that the rhythmic bed is solid enough for the other guys to keep going...

    they both have their place... I don't do it that much anymore...
     
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  11. 69ChevyP/U

    69ChevyP/U TDPRI Member

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    I live for the free Jam. My opinion is that’s the best way to really get to know one another sonically. Listening is paramount. I like everything from Jazz to Hardcore and Funk. I am not afraid or intimidated by trying to make something out of nothing. Songs only serve the purpose of organizing these thoughts, patterns, and brush strokes, for others to be able to absorb. Songs are listener friendly. Improv is more fulfilling to me as a player.
     
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  12. That Cal Webway

    That Cal Webway TDPRI Member

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    Jamss like that can be really fun

    I've been to ones that were predictable and tedious.
    So always a cautionary note

    I like to do a song too, whether it's deconstructing it and messing it up etc
     
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  13. nojazzhere

    nojazzhere Poster Extraordinaire

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    The band I recently left was a "jam-on-a-song" type of band. Very loose and unstructured. That CAN be fun and good, with the right bunch of players.....these guys WEREN'T those players. I guess it depends on your "goals". If you're just getting together to explore and experiment, that's fine. But if you're trying to put a band together to play songs for an audience, I prefer a little (lot) more structure and discipline. So again....if you're just hanging out, have fun.....and don't drink too much and drive. ;)
     
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  14. TeleTex82

    TeleTex82 Friend of Leo's

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    We always end practice with a jam, usually an extended one. I use it as an opportunity to try new licks, scales, arpeggios, and techniques that I've been working on. It's a fun and pressure free way to end the night.
     
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  15. Bob M

    Bob M Tele-Afflicted Ad Free Member

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    I jam with a few guys and it is all about songs, not long instrumental stuff. All the guys can sing and know many songs. The only issue we have is we get in a rut sometimes and have to challenge ourselves to bring in new songs. We're older guys and are primarily classic country. Occasionally I play bass with a different bunch with a much wider range. It's always good to play with others. You need some new blood.
     
  16. P Thought

    P Thought Poster Extraordinaire Silver Supporter

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    I don't think I've ever participated in a "jam", though I know I ought to.

    As I think about that, I realize what a solitary thing my music has been for me. My mom was that way too: she played the piano pretty well and she sang beautifully, but she rarely played piano when anyone else was around.

    (Edit): filling out my genealogy as a musician, I have to tell about my dad, too. He had a pretty tolerable singing voice, and he knew the first couple measures of more songs than anyone I ever knew, but I can't think of any songs he knew past the first line or two. The only instrument I ever heard him play was harmonica, and that was only one-handed while he was driving. Funny, in his last dementia he'd still play harmonica if you handed him one, but only a line or two of any song you'd recognize.
     
    Last edited: Nov 8, 2019 at 1:57 PM
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  17. ecoast

    ecoast Tele-Holic

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    fun

    never know what 'road' you all go down together; best is the give and take and supporting the others while they have their moment

    happens organically with us
     
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  18. Ex-riverman

    Ex-riverman Tele-Holic

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    It’s all I know how to do. Been playing with others for the first time in a long time these last few months. It’s challenging and more fun to play than to listen to, I imagine. But it can be really exciting. I often think of ways to coordinate a group in order to keep things interesting (for us and listeners) but we haven’t made it that far. Nor have we had any listeners. Anyone remember the band Paper Bag? SST band from the mid 80’s. All improv. With mixed success.
     
  19. Slap Axe

    Slap Axe TDPRI Member

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    Sounds fun, enjoy it man. I have a fairly regular Friday night session with some friends and it’s always a blast. Looks like it’s on for tonight. We’re a freewheeling bunch and usually start songs in a traditional manner by singing a few verses, but tend wander wherever someone decides to take us. One song might be straightforward with minimal soloing and jamming, but the next one will go completely off the rails into the 30 minute improv-experimental jam zone. Always a good time, just keep on jammin’!
     
  20. Flat6Driver

    Flat6Driver Friend of Leo's

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    I need to do that with my band. We used to rip one song down at the end and have gotten away from that.

    However, we are a "blues" band and some of what we do is a little too similar. Too many aimless solos, too many 1 4 5s in a row. I'd like to do more "prepared" things. The actual intro, the right feel, etc.
     
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