You are at a point now where you’re confident enough in your instrument and you ‘re looking to take the next step in your musical journey. That next step is joining a band. Naturally, with this endeavor, there will be a ton of questions that you will have like, how do I even find a band to join? How can I/my band find gigs? The list of questions go on and I could spend a lifetime posing and answering each one. However, in my time playing in bands I have gathered some important knowledge. Knowledge that I believe will be useful for new musicians starting out and looking to join a band.
What Is Your First Step In Joining a Band?
Commitment in a band is the most important thing. Therefore, the first thing you have to do is to head to your cellphone or computer or manual calendar and mark off ALL of the dates in which you have non-musical commitments. Once you have a framework of when your commitments are, you can pose to new bands you’ll be joining, exactly how your schedule looks and can commit (or not) to the bands requirements.
Determine The Type Of Muso You are
When you first start out with your instrument, that’s pretty much all it is. You and your instrument. So between the two of you, play all the different types and genres of music that you find appealing and choose one that you absolutely love to play. For example, this may be rock, jazz or pop. By determining what type of musician you are, you can determine what kind of band you’d like to join.
Original Music or Covers?
This is the most important decision if you’re looking to make a career out of music. Whilst playing covers is generally a safer option and has the ability to earn you a steady income, the outcome is not always as rewarding as playing original music. On the flip side, playing original music has much less of an ability to give you a steady income UNLESS your band breaks it. If playing in a band is just about the love and enjoyment of it, then whichever one you decide is completely up to you.
So How Do You Actually Find A Band?
There are two ways in which you can go about this. The first way is to start a brand new band and advertise looking for member OR you can join an existing band. For a first timer, I highly recommend going for joining an existing band. The main reason is because they already have material and most likely an established practice and gigging regime. So how do you find an existing band? The answer is not that hard, Classfieds!! Craigslist is a hots-pot for musicians looking for or to join bands. This is a great place to seek musicians. Another great idea is to hang out at rehearsal spaces where other bands practice. Put up posters at the rehears spots. Also, it is a great idea to network both at other bands gigs and at rehearsal spots as well as local bars and joints where you know the musicians hang out. You can also advertise at music stores as well as on Facebook groups in your city.
I’ve Found A Band To Join, What Now?
You should contact the band and request an audition. Ask the band if they have any songs they can send you so that you can learn some of their material. Prepare for the audition just as you would for a job interview. You want to make sure you’re as professional as possible. However, this is not always the case as some bands tend to be super relaxed about proceedings whilst others will be super strict. It’s so important to remember that going for multiple auditions is just part of the process and “not getting the part” should not make you despondent or disappointed. You’ll eventually find the right band suitable for you just make sure you’re constantly on the look out and on the ball with your chops. Promoting your band as well as finding gigs is also another important next step after you’ve joined one.
There’s a whole lot more Advice For Bands Here!