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PLAY for PAY or for LOVE
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Rkelley40



Joined: 10 Nov 2005
Posts: 117
Location: Baltimore, MD

PostPosted: Fri Feb 10, 2006 1:56 pm    Post subject: PLAY for PAY or for LOVE Reply with quote

My band plays quite a few shows and I have noticed that the higher paying ones are the ones that I least enjoy. Ambience music, Audience's not really paying attention. These are usually the "upper crust black tie affairs that pay a grand or so. On the other hand when we play in some of these dives, the audience pays more attention and seems to appreciate it
more. I would rather pay where it is listened to and even for less money.
How about you guys?
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JakeJew



Joined: 30 Jul 2005
Posts: 2190
Location: Boston, MA

PostPosted: Fri Feb 10, 2006 2:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I don't have any need for people to hear me play. When I'm doing a gig gig (which I've only done a couple of times), I do it for money . People want some background entertainment, so they hire musicians. I don't really enjoy it, but I don't like performing much anyway.

If I were going to perform and enjoy it I'd do my own music which isn't very accessible anyway, I'd probably wind up doing it for free.
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Rkelley40



Joined: 10 Nov 2005
Posts: 117
Location: Baltimore, MD

PostPosted: Fri Feb 10, 2006 2:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Jake, I gotta ask, Are you happy with that? It is an interesting response.
I on the other hand do need to have someone to listen to me even if it's only the wife and kids. I play to entertain and to make people happy(me first).
I get enjoyment out of it. But again that's just me. When I read the post's on this site where guys send in clips, and the response is favorable, I thinks that is a needed thing for all of us. Are you saying that it does not matter to you.
WOW.
ok, much love to ya anyway
ROD
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JakeJew



Joined: 30 Jul 2005
Posts: 2190
Location: Boston, MA

PostPosted: Fri Feb 10, 2006 3:02 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Rkelley40 wrote:
Jake, I gotta ask, Are you happy with that? It is an interesting response.
I on the other hand do need to have someone to listen to me even if it's only the wife and kids. I play to entertain and to make people happy(me first).
I get enjoyment out of it. But again that's just me. When I read the post's on this site where guys send in clips, and the response is favorable, I thinks that is a needed thing for all of us. Are you saying that it does not matter to you.
WOW.
ok, much love to ya anyway
ROD


Well, I teach guitar for a living, so every day I get to help people with music and watch them grow as musicians. When that goes well it is very satisfying!

In the past I have gigged a lot. I was in a band in high school and we played lots of shows. It was always more fun for me to write, practice, and record than it was for me to perform. However, this was performing pre-written parts - maybe peforming jazz (which I'm new to) would be more fun.

If this seems strange to you I guess something you should understand is that I've been doing a lot of work in the past few years regarding how I see myself and managing my ego. It used to be that I would play in front of people any time there was a guitar around and I'd try to impress people and make them think that I was the best guitarist in town. I'm really trying to get away from that as I realize it's a terrible thing for my psyche and it reflects very poorly on me.

My view on my own musical practice is that I love exploring music, learning about music, playing music, creating music, listening to music, and most of all understanding music. I love the process, and honesty I feel like it's through the understanding part that I can be a better teacher - I see that as my service to the outside world. In my opinion, we need better teachers before we need better performers and artists. Plenty of people are aspiring to be amazing artists and performers, I don't think enough people are aspiring to teach and really care about their students.

Being up on stage doesn't have much appeal to me even though I know other people might enjoy hearing me play. The way I see it, there are millions of performers who love performing, there are millions of bands and artists making cds - if people want to see live music or hear great music they already have enough to choose from. I don't think I am doing any one a disservice with my choices.

But at the same time, I'm fairly new to jazz. Perhaps in a few years I'll change my tune and get the performing bug again. I do know that I really like playing with people - but I generally prefer playing when there isn't much of an audience. That way it's just about communication between the musicians, and we're not trying to please any outside opinion.

Does that make sense?
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Gorecki
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Joined: 06 Oct 2005
Posts: 62518
Location: Davis, CA

PostPosted: Fri Feb 10, 2006 4:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

No question I do it for me, it's not even just love, it's need, it's been something that has carried me through some severe BS in life and I believe if I don't treat it tenderly I just might go nuts!

My life really doesn't leave room for 'a band' let alone even a weekly poker night. So I don't bother to fight it. I like playing with others but don't care for or about performing and it took me a long time to conclude that.

I started playing bar/club environments at around 15 and pretty much stopped at around 30. Could be because if one more drunken idiot puts an open beer on one my cabs (or worse falls into it while doing so) I'll killem! Evil or Very Mad Tip of the iceberg (so to speak) but think it conveys there's no desire to play out.

So, I have a studio and do what ever I want, when ever I can. That for the most part keeps me on my toes and functional. Wink
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Martacus



Joined: 05 Jan 2006
Posts: 115
Location: Vermont

PostPosted: Fri Feb 10, 2006 5:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Love. Absolutely. Making a few bucks is cool, but I just enjoy playing for people. I won't do gigs just for bread - has to be a jazz gig because I really want to get as good at that as I possibly can, and it just makes me happy to play jazz - if I don't get to play what I want, but I'll play for free if I DO get to play what I want. Strictly love of playing, and if ONE person enjoys it, that's cool.
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Rkelley40



Joined: 10 Nov 2005
Posts: 117
Location: Baltimore, MD

PostPosted: Fri Feb 10, 2006 6:17 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Jake, Yes that does make sense and I must say that it is a humble approach. Like yourself I am fairly new to playing Jazz, I came up through the funk and Rock age. And yes there is not much time for playing nightly, (would'nt do it anyway, family time means more) But I love to perform. Again humility is not a possession of all persons.
I applaude you.
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draqza



Joined: 28 Dec 2004
Posts: 205

PostPosted: Fri Feb 10, 2006 8:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

JakeJew wrote:

It was always more fun for me to write, practice, and record than it was for me to perform. However, this was performing pre-written parts - maybe peforming jazz (which I'm new to) would be more fun.


That's kinda how I feel about it, based on my limited experience... part of it for me though is a case of stage fright that I'm still working through. When I was trying to get a band going with some of my friends in college, the drummer was more interested in performing but I just wanted to write and record. (Well, "write" is still used loosely, I was really trying to convince them that we should be something approximating a fusion/hard rock jam trio, so writing would amount to coming up with some fun grooves to jam on. We did write a few fully structured songs though.) When we would have our friends come in the band room and listen to us, I definitely had more fun (and I like to think they did too) jamming than playing either cover or our own songs.

Similarly, when I was in a guitar ensemble last year, one semester we did a big band style blues tune and "Minor Swing," and the other semester we did another big band song, and on all 3 of them I got to solo for a couple choruses, and I thought that was fun, even if I did have a few major flubs. (Talking with my guitar teacher/ensemble leader later I joked that I was playing outside, hehe.) So yeah, for me, improvised performance is a lot more interesting than the more structured performance...
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PaulD



Joined: 18 Sep 2004
Posts: 1129
Location: Chicago

PostPosted: Fri Feb 10, 2006 9:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I used to do a lot of jobbing gigs back in the 70's & 80's, but it was not fun and I really didn't like it, which is why I stopped playing. I'd love to play jazz, but I could never even imagine actually charging someone to hear me play.

Paul
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JakeJew



Joined: 30 Jul 2005
Posts: 2190
Location: Boston, MA

PostPosted: Fri Feb 10, 2006 9:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

draqza wrote:
JakeJew wrote:

It was always more fun for me to write, practice, and record than it was for me to perform. However, this was performing pre-written parts - maybe peforming jazz (which I'm new to) would be more fun.


That's kinda how I feel about it, based on my limited experience... part of it for me though is a case of stage fright that I'm still working through. When I was trying to get a band going with some of my friends in college, the drummer was more interested in performing but I just wanted to write and record. (Well, "write" is still used loosely, I was really trying to convince them that we should be something approximating a fusion/hard rock jam trio, so writing would amount to coming up with some fun grooves to jam on. We did write a few fully structured songs though.) When we would have our friends come in the band room and listen to us, I definitely had more fun (and I like to think they did too) jamming than playing either cover or our own songs.

Similarly, when I was in a guitar ensemble last year, one semester we did a big band style blues tune and "Minor Swing," and the other semester we did another big band song, and on all 3 of them I got to solo for a couple choruses, and I thought that was fun, even if I did have a few major flubs. (Talking with my guitar teacher/ensemble leader later I joked that I was playing outside, hehe.) So yeah, for me, improvised performance is a lot more interesting than the more structured performance...


Heh, my band was rock and fairly simple and I played electric bass most of the time. It was often really boring (musically) and I had to run around on stage looking like I was really into it. Playing pre written simple bass lines was pretty darn boring. When I did play guitar and get solos and such it was more fun, but still I didn't really "get" it. I seem to have more fun playing alone, but like I said, maybe that will change.
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alfonso



Joined: 25 May 2005
Posts: 1258
Location: Sacramento

PostPosted: Sat Feb 11, 2006 1:26 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yeah I can relate to what you're saying even though I haven't gigged for over a year and the band I'm with now is in the middle of replacing a drummer and the girl singer just started. Anyways, I played at the
County Jail back years ago ok I'll say when, 1985 it was a free concert and we had a blast, actually one of the best gigs I ever did. Usually the audience wants you to succeed and sound good if there paying attention so that's always cool but we had, literally a captive audience, oh and then we got to play for the ladies side. Super cool, nothing like playing in front of horny chicks who have been serving time for awhile, the whole band felt really good, big ego boost to say the least. Wink
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steve



Joined: 04 Jun 2005
Posts: 867
Location: oz

PostPosted: Sat Feb 11, 2006 1:30 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Does anyone pay for love?


Seriously, I'd say both. Depends on the gig. Had a gig at the senior Citz once and we busted out "Bill Bailey", "Hello Dolly", "All Of Me", etc and it was a joyous time.

Very subjective and personal subject, with lots of variables (stole that from you PaulD)

I remember Chris S. posting on the subject too not that long ago.
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PaulD



Joined: 18 Sep 2004
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Location: Chicago

PostPosted: Sat Feb 11, 2006 3:32 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

steve wrote:

Very subjective and personal subject, with lots of variables (stole that from you PaulD)


ok steve, now you'll be hearing from my attorney!! Laughing Laughing

Paul
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Jeffrey_Burr



Joined: 04 Jul 2005
Posts: 164
Location: california

PostPosted: Sat Feb 11, 2006 5:57 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Both - can't afford to play only fun gigs. Sometimes there are gigs that are fun and also happen to pay decently. I used feel I had to say yes to every call that came, even if is was very little bread and misery was virtually guaranteed. When my son was born I decided to decline these, as graciously as possible. That said, I'll still do a shit-money gig if I am certain I will have a good time, or if it's with someone I've never met who needs to be giving me alot of good gigs but doesn't know it yet.

It was strictly for love when it was important (not to mention possible) to be strictly for love - when I was a kid, without any concept of what responsibilities I would have later in life. I practiced alot and dreamed of playing with Art Blakey. I got pretty good, and I derived a tremendous amount of joy and satisfaction from playing at home for no one. I could play as fast as you please in your key of choice, but I couldn't play a ballad. Was it love??? You could say I'm not hard up for it anymore, and I guess I kind of miss that erection, but I like to think that THE LOVE is much more palpable in my playing now. Nowadays I really enjoy connecting with listeners too, but it doesn't bug me if there's only one person listening out of the whole crowd. There's always at least one, I've found.
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Brazjazz



Joined: 19 Feb 2006
Posts: 12
Location: Anaconda, Montana

PostPosted: Tue Feb 21, 2006 4:04 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

great discussion here, important points of view and from all perspectives.

One thing I find difficult to understand particularly in jazz is how many players really won't get excited about rehearsing. A gig that pays money is one thing. Getting together to "jam" seriously, work out various structures over which to improvise and so on is not something a lot of people will put their time and energy into. Even getting together just to jam which sounds casual but can certainly make a difference in how things turn out once at a gig. That's really how jazz began isn't it, in jam sessions before, during and after gigs.

just a reaction to all your very interesting and oft well thought out ideas

best,

braz
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