Let’s fix a big problem!
This concept applies to the workplace, it has a massive role in all relationships. It will improve every situation, and it’s straightforward, and people rarely do it in a band setting. Here’s the thing, you can do it today, and it will make you ten times better.
To start off, I will admit I’m guilty of this too, I get super self-conscious, I look down at the ground during practice. I think this is because performing together is kind of an intimate thing. You’re creating music, you’re making something beautiful together, and you are all invested in it. It’s awkward to look at each other while performing, especially singing, but you need to break past that feeling! You need to look around at each other! Right now you’re only using your sense of hearing when you look down at the floor. You’re not fullying emersed in the music.
We can make it easier by simply talking it out, say aloud the things that you don’t think need to be announced.
I get it!! I have a hard time with this, I frequently think, well, I don’t need to say that. “They know…”
NO!!! They don’t!
Even if they did, how beautiful would it be to hear someone yell, “Man, I really like it when you do this part! Keep doing that!”
Or say you can say, “Let’s play softer.” Or even “I don’t like that part, what else do you have?” They can defend it at this point and tell you why they like what they’re doing. This is ok! Maybe that will make you appreciate it that part? Who knows – well, you won’t if you don’t say something.
I want to be at a practice where people are almost consistently talking through the song, building each other up, working the song into perfection. WHY NOT?! Why do so many bands not speak during the song? I have no idea.
I’m not an idiot, you shouldn’t do that up on stage. But if you hear something during practice, say something while you’re playing. “DUDE! I love that part!” I promise this will make for a better practice. Stop leaving things unsaid.
You don’t have to be the singer or the frontman to speak to these guys. If you’ve ever worked a fast paced job, you know how frustrating it can be when you don’t communicate the simple things.
I have one more point to make about the whole thing. When you hear something you like, or especially that you don’t enjoy. If you don’t say how you feel until about it till the end of the song, you will be thinking about it until the end of the song, which means you’re really not focused on what’s going on at the moment. It takes you out of the magic of the moment if you don’t say something. It also wastes time! You have to go back to that part and try to fix something, this messes with the feng shui of practice.
Think of an orchestral conductor, he does this in real time! “You play softer, you play loud… let’s go a little faster now.” It’s not like this is a new concept.
Promise me you will try it as an experiment.
Promise me that the next time you’re playing through your set at practice. Look around at your friends. Tell them you love a piece while they’re playing the part! Hell, ham it up with them, if you’re not doing it there during practice, when will you be doing? At the show, probably not. And people LOVE bands having fun up on stage.
That’s three times you promised me. Don’t you break it.