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#1300282 - 11/06/09 01:18 AM Practicing for gig/recording
etcetra Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/25/08
Posts: 1457
I met this drummer who wanted to doing a demo recording together so that he can pass them out to people for gigs. he is an ok drummer at best, but I figure it wouldn't hurt to do it.

The problem is that he is asking me to practice with him.. and the tunes we are playing are "Cantalope Island", "Autumn Leaves".. etc. It's one thing if we are doing difficult music we've never done before, but I was like "what, I actually have to spend my time practicing those tunes?"In my experience, I never rehearse for a demo if we are just playing standards, because we know that we can play them fine.

So how do you guys think? To me, playing those standards are pretty dreadful experience, I've played them so many times, I know why some people refuse to play them in jam sessions.. and the thought of having to practice them makes me puke.

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#1300284 - 11/06/09 01:27 AM Re: Practicing for gig/recording [Re: etcetra]
jazzwee Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/25/07
Posts: 7203
Loc: So. California
That means you're not challenging yourself, man. smile You must be playing Autumn Leaves the same old way. It's just ii-V-I's right? Surely you can make it more interesting as any other ii-V-I tune you have in your set list...

So my teacher says to his students -- we're going to practice this concept on ATTYA. Students say: ATTYA again???? Teacher says: Why, can you play ATTYA well? Students shut up.

I could say the same thing about ATTYA - just a bunch of ii-V-I's like Autumn Leaves.
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#1300301 - 11/06/09 02:46 AM Re: Practicing for gig/recording [Re: jazzwee]
etcetra Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/25/08
Posts: 1457

You have to take into the consideration of drummer.. if he was a good drummer, I would do some arrangment on it that we can all work on, but I can't really do that for this drummer, because he can't do anything beyond just playing time. If I could ATTYA in 7, then sure, I have reason to practice, but that's not going to happen with this drummer.

What he means by practice is figuring out solo order, doing 4s..etc, stuff that for me, don't really need to practice.

And this is supposed to be a demo for casuals, so I am not going to do all the substitution and stuff on it, I am just going to play it normally.

BTW, I've been to jam sessions where the house bands refused to play certain tunes like Cantalope Island, because they've played it so many times that they just don't want to play them.

#1300488 - 11/06/09 01:05 PM Re: Practicing for gig/recording [Re: etcetra]
nitekatt2008z Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/24/08
Posts: 552
Etcetra, I have faced the same thing. If the drummer can actually get you some paying gigs by you guys putting a demo down, then my advice is bite the bullet, do at least one rehearsal and then tell him you feel that you know enough standards and can play them several ways and additional rehearsals are superfluous.

I play in 3 jazz groups that get paying gigs and we all play, Cantalope, Autumn L, All Blues, So What; anything in the Real Book, but each version of the tunes we play are all different arrangements and unique to each group. Of course I'm getting paid to play, so that's fine with me.

I got a kick reading an interview with Bill Evans and the writer asked Bill how much his trio rehearses, and he said maybe once for a recording session. In fact he said when playing gigs, he had not any set list and would just start a tune and his bass players and drummers had the instinct and empathy on what to play. But on the other hand, I read before Chick Corea Elektrik or Akoustic Bands go on the road, there are many intensive 8 hour rehearsals for several weeks or months before the tour.


Edited by nitekatt2008z (11/06/09 01:15 PM)

#1300590 - 11/06/09 03:23 PM Re: Practicing for gig/recording [Re: nitekatt2008z]
etcetra Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/25/08
Posts: 1457

yea, its interesting how different people are about rehearsing.. but I am pretty sure the people Bill worked with have did the homework before they rehearsed.

I guess what bothers me is that fact that I rehearsed with the drummer once already, and he wants us to rehearse more, or even rehearse weekly to get things tighter.. so i asked others working musicians in the area for their opinion, and they pretty much agreed with my point of view.

It's one thing if the drummer can do something interesting with the tunes but he really can't.. I agreed to do a demo but I didn't expect to turn out like this.

I decided to just tell the drummer honestly about how I felt about the situation, and I explained to him how most players I asked will not rehearse those kind of tunes on a regular basis just for a demo. People don't understand just how dreadful it is to play those tunes for the 1000th times like an abersold..

#1300671 - 11/06/09 05:39 PM Re: Practicing for gig/recording [Re: etcetra]
jazzwee Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/25/07
Posts: 7203
Loc: So. California
Haha! He's using you as an Aebersold. smile Maybe he should just record you on a separate track so he can replay it over and over smile
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