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Playing an Instrument / Playing Nice With Others

November 12, 2013

il_570xN.228260051It’s not enough to play an instrument. A band member must learn to “play well with others.” And by “play well with others,” I’m not talking about getting along with your band members on a personal level. That’s important, but that’s a whole ‘nother sermon. I’m talking about musically playing well together.

You may be able to do both. But haven’t you ever listened to a guy who is GREAT at his instrument but just uses songs as an excuse to play solos for three minutes? They have spent hours alone in their room practicing hard. Maybe they took private lessons. Either way, they know how to rock their instruments. Only problem is, they are used to playing alone. On stage in a band, they aren’t alone.

Seems obvious on paper, but what about in practice?

A drummer in a band setting in completely different than a drummer doing a solo at a Drum-A-Thon. Same for guitarists, bassists, or anything else. Learning to play your instrument technically correct and having good gear isn’t enough. You have to learn to compliment each other in a musical environment. Check out this cornerstone post on The Pie Concept on how your band needs to love pie. Yum.

The biggest thing is learning when to “hold back“. A lot of musicians want to get up on stage and just play the fastest/loudest/hardest they can throughout THE ENTIRE SET. This is bad ’cause you need dynamics, baby.

It’s a matter of focusing on the big picture (the band as a whole) instead of just focusing on your instrument.

So please, for your ol’ buddy Noah, think of yourself as a part of one complete band, not a single individual on stage surrounded by three or four other single individuals.

by Noah Copeland

 

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Pretty please?

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