It's time to put together what the audience is going to hear.
Now you have got the rehearsal process sorted you are now ready to put your set together. This is where jamming and songwriting (and therefore band member dynamics) come into play.
Here are some ideas as to how this may work out.
The band is now preparing for it's first gig wherever that may be.
To play it's first gig the band is going to need songs written by it's members (unless the band is a covers band or you are getting songwriters from outside of the band to write songs for you).
Lets assume that you want to write 15 songs as a starting goal. 15 songs will be enough for the band to play a 30 minute set at a double or triple bill somewhere (meaning a gig with two, three or more bands playing on one night)
As the bands songwriting process is going to be intergrated into the rehearsals it is going to be even more important that rehearsals are well organised and are efficient uses of everyones time and effort.
First of all everyone in the band needs to understand that the sooner a set of songs is written and rehearsed the sooner the band can go out and play gigs. Here are some suggestions:
1. Make it a rule that everyone in the band comes into rehearsals with at least one lyrical or musical idea - If the lyrical and musical ideas are together then that's even better.
Bear in mind that bringing songwriting ideas to rehearsals will require a certain amount of confidence from each band member and some will be more comfortable doing this with others. If this is the case:
2. Don't be hard on the members that don't bring any songwriting ideas first up - Be encouraging and make them feel comfortable in perhaps bringing something in next rehearsal.
(Oh, by the way. If you or your band members are finding it hard to come up with songwriting ideas you might find my FREE eReport "11 Ways To Eliminate Writers Block FOREVER!" very useful)
Eventually the band member dynamics will sort themselves out and the songwriters and the players of the band will become apparent.
Generally if the band has a lead singer then the lyrics will mostly come from him/her. Musical ideas will generally come from either the guitarist or the keyboard player (or both) as these instruments deal more with chords which lends itself to song arrangement issues.
Of course there are exceptions to the rule. One example that comes to mind is Neil Peart, the drummer from "Rush". He writes most (if not all) of their lyrics (Oh by the way I love Rush!).
3. Bring a tape recorder (and blank tapes) to every rehearsal - It's important that eveybody takes home a tape of the rehearsal so they can listen to the songs being rehearsed and the songwriting ideas being introduced in their own time at home. Everything needs to be recorded.
Perhaps listening to the tape outside of a band environment can trigger somethng else.
4. Start the rehearsal off by giving some time to every songwriting idea introduced - How much time you give to every songwriting idea is up to you but I would say 20 minutes could be a good starting point.
If you have five band members with one idea each then you are talking about the first hour and a half of your rehearsal being used in this way.
5. Once a songwriting idea has been worked on for the time limit allowed , stop and go to the next songwriting idea - You will also have a record of the songwriting jam on tape so don't worry about trying to remember what you have done.
6. Once all songwriting ideas are intoduced, played and recorded it's time to work on last weeks ideas - Of course miss this step for the first rehearsal but for every rehearsal after that this will be an important step.
In listening to the rehearsal tape over the week something would have stood out as a song to be looked at more closely by the band if this is the case then start jamming the idea more intensely and start trying to piece the puzzle together
7. End the rehearsal with a free for all jam - This is where anything goes, an aural brainstorming session by all of the band members. This is done for a bit of fun but also as a good stress release.
Make sure that you record these sessions as well because I have always been amazed at what comes out of these free for all jams.
As I said before, how much time you devote to these steps is up to you but in no time you will find a set of songs at your disposal that the band will be happy with.
Once this has been achieved your indie music band is one more step closer to playing live.
Until next time,
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Keywords: indie music, independent music, music band, music artist, music industry, music business, music marketing, band promotion, corey stewart