A while ago a post titled “Five Mistakes Band & Label Sites Make” was getting linked from numerous blogs. I happened across it. Two nights ago I was at the Finals of the 10th Annual Battle of the Bands in town. I was constantly reminded of the post, except in a “Mistakes Newish Bands Make at Live Shows” way. This is my version of that list.
You may recall I used to play bass, in bands no less. Those bands made a number of these mistakes, though thankfully not all. And sure, some bands are bands just for the sake of screwing around, not to be professionals. But if you are the kind of band that wants to duke it out in a battle, I have a hard time believing you are one of those bands.
- Referencing a set list scribble on a crumbled piece of paper between every song. It’s a 30 minute battle set, be prepared—know that set list in your sleep.
- Don’t say “This is an original song we wrote together” before every song. Again, it’s a 30 minute battle set, not some night long bar set, you damn well better be playing original songs. No one cares how poorly you cover Slayer. And isn’t saying “original” followed by “we wrote” redundant?
- Don’t add “This is my favorite song ever” before saying “This is an original song we wrote together”. I hope you like the music you create.
- If you are so new you don’t have 30 minutes of decent original material, don’t play an obscure cover and fail to mention it is indeed a cover. When attempting an exact performance of the recorded version, please play it correctly.
- When applying make-up/face paint to add to your shtick, do it neatly so you don’t look like a five year old that got into Mom’s mascara.
- When applying make-up/face paint to add to your shtick, do it just before going on stage, no five hours ahead of time so you don’t look like a five year old that got into Mom’s mascara.
- Don’t ask how much time you have left between every song. See #1.
- After asking how much time you have left and receiving the response “4 minutes”, don’t have your ego maniac of a drummer wank off on the drums for 60 seconds while putting up the horns and then leave the stage. Four minutes is plenty of time to play another song.
That was fun. As was the battle even though it may not sound like after those comments. I didn’t stick around to find out who won but I really hope it was Lethargic Overdrive. Sorry guys, couldn’t find you anywhere on the Internerd. That should probably be added to the list of mistakes… Speaking of, have any others?