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Originally Posted by AndrewJCW
Many people here are focused on solo classical piano so not really a whole lot of opportunity for ‘gigs’ as such. Like others I played church music for 10 years (not piano however). Church isn’t gigging though, very different to getting paid. I’ve played some big events but everyone knows at the of the day church is done by volunteers and there’s a wide range of skills and experience so it’s very easy going and supportive generally. It’s actually a great environment to learn music in.

Ha not at a couple of churches the wife and I participated in. We both looked at each other and bowed out quickly. The church had a school which our children attended so the young music director thought he could be late to special practices and I would cover for him. Anyway I do agree that playing for church in general is great experience but realize that if you do you are volunteering your time. The one or two that are getting paid should do the heavy lifting.


All these years playing and I still consider myself a novice.
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Hobbyist. No public performance besides the quarterly PW recitals. Have some recordings uploaded online.

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I just entertain my bird. smile


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We got both kinds of music: Country and Western!
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First gig I don't remember but it was playing guitar with a band. I'd auditioned for another job along with others, and though I never got accepted by the auditooning band, there was another outfit ready to pick up on what was left.
I was never happy with guitar;in those days (late 60's early 70's) some of the equipment was decidedly Heath Robinson. My amp had no case since it overheated in one and became a distortion box ahead of its time. It also started burning.
Did a lot on organ with a threee piece, regular dance-pop and ballroom. That was where the money was, so I stayed in that line. Played in churches for a number of years and in restaurants until 10 years ago.
Don't bother now, and I got back into some classics again here. (ABF)
It's been fun . . . .


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@peterws: Your profile lists you as a "retired Crematorium Organist". So ... did your clients like your performances?

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I toured as a sideman for a few months every year, playing places where you set up in the corner by the pinball machine, to places like Town Hall. Worked in a restaurant when home, to pay the bills. -- Now I play in a Unitarian church, which I'm enjoying immensely. Trying to get into teaching, but may get another restaurant job to help pay the bills. As long as the restaurant lets you play tunes while working, it's a good gig.


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As a pianist, not yet, but I'm aiming for it. At the moment, my semi-regular gigging is limited to bass.


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I'm now 64, started gigging at 16 on organ (rock, soul,) so 48 years. No classical lessons, just cheesy pop lessons reading only right hand, chord symbols and pedals. Changed to piano (jazz, classical.) Trying to add bass clef reading was challenging. (Good for you all that learned both clefts at same time.) Straight bribe to music college (just kidding,) my audition though sucked (not kidding.) After a year transferred to Berklee, after three years dropped out and started gigging months a time in New England. Gigged exclusively then supplemented with day job until 2009, when I stopped the money maker (clubs, weddings.) Since then some jazz gigs, mostly background brunches and private jobs.

Retired from office-type day job and finally have the time to practice and listen (and hopefully still play live after covid19.)

Looking back my biggest takeaway is I never put in the work although I thought I kinda was. After Berklee, for many years studied with great teachers and even though I didn't put the work in, those jazz lessons are proving now to be the backbone of my determination to keep improving.

For all the accomplished players here, I do work on classical but since I missed out on my formative years, my fingering and reading both clefs makes it a slow process, but again I'm seeing that if you put the work in you can improve. Currently, Well Tempered Clavier, #1 fugue is my challenge.

My idea of putting the work in can be summed up like this. Now, when I sit down to practice, I feel like I'm adding on from previous day rather than the feeling I'm starting over again.


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Originally Posted by MacMacMac
@peterws: Your profile lists you as a "retired Crematorium Organist". So ... did your clients like your performances?

Never got many complaints. But the undertaker once reported me to my boss (female) for tapping to the rhythm of "Bat out of heck" on the pedalboard. I don't like sitting still.
Turned out later that said undertaker got sacked for "misapproriating" funds. She had a dodgy b/f who needed those funds..
I had to play many CDs, and sometimes the tunes if the undertakers forgot the disc. That happened often.
It was a good job; I enjoyed it.


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Have I performed in public or gigged in the past?
--Yes. Examples: choir accompaniment, solo piano for a wedding, classical piano in a few restaurants, a couple of rock bands.

Have I been paid to perform in public in the past?
--Occasionally.

Have I ever made a living from performing in public?
--No, not even remotely close-- some provided pocket money, some were unpaid.


Play classical repertoire from score. Improvise blues.
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Originally Posted by anotherscott
Originally Posted by MacMacMac
I hate that word "gig" when what is really meant is "musical performance".

Definition: gig
1. a light two-wheeled carriage pulled by one horse
2. a light, fast, narrow boat adapted for rowing or sailing

BTW, I do not gig in any of those senses.
Alternatively, see: https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/gig

I do gig in the musical sense... or at least I did until covid.


When someone at work sped into the company parking lot and hit my parked car a mutual friend approached me about giving the person a break by not making an insurance claim and setting up manageable payments. The friend cited how "it was an accident." Of course it was an accident, (car accident), right?

"Gig" apparently originated as a reference to "engagement" in a jazz musician's environment. Shortened for engagement it sounds cool to me but I can understand not liking a word. It is similar to how I feel about the words "groovy" or "keen" which for some reason have a bit of cringe-worthiness.

"I do not gig in any of those senses" listed in the Merriam-Webster dictionary but I have gigged countless times in my dreams since I was first exposed to live music.

Noodler in the musical sense here.

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It's funny you should mention "keen" ...
Originally Posted by o0Ampy0o
... I can understand not liking a word. It is similar to how I feel about the words "groovy" or "keen" which for some reason have a bit of cringe-worthiness.
That was a 50s-era repurposing. Its meaning in that context was similar to the 60s "groovy" neologism.

But keen is commonly, and properly, used in UK. It stood out when I first heard it from my Scots colleagues. But I soon came to accept it, given that they knew how to used it correctly.

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