Upcoming "gig"

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Dinsdale
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Upcoming "gig"

Post by Dinsdale » Mon Jul 10, 2017 9:35 am

File this under "everything has to start somewhere."

Up til now, my playing has almost exclusively been in jam environments. A couple of times a year, some grouping of jammers has played somewhere for pay or not - at a party, a fundraiser, church service, etc.

A year or so ago I started playing one evening a week with one guy who lives near me. He plays mando/banjo/guitar, and has a nice bass voice. I mainly wanted to develop a limited song list, work on arrangements, and try to "perfect" songs, rather than just hacking away at whatever is brought to a jam with whatever pickers show up.

He brought in a woman who lives nearby who picks mando, but who is a really accomplished cellist, wanting to play BG cello. Then we added another woman fiddler, with a really sweet singing voice. She has been picking up guitar (disgustingly quickly.) We would meet weekly, on whatever day at least 3 of us could make it. Normal issues of folk in their 40s-50s with jobs/families/lives/etc. A few months ago we added one more guy. He plays tenor guitar, various ukes, and harp. Has a nice voice, has excellent rhythm and is pretty good at arrangements and such. Among the reasons I wanted to add him were: 1) he really wanted to join; 2) adding a 5th makes it easier to form a quorum of 3 on a given weeknight; and 3) he is a really nice guy.

We seem to be developing a decent sound, blending fiddle tunes, folk, and oldtime. Tho we consciously avoid our cello/fiddle/bass sounding like a string trio, we have that to drop in when we want. We have been working up a songlist of maybe 20 tunes (plus a hundred or so we could hack away at from our years of jamming together.)

All My Trials
Arkansas Traveller
Blackberry Blossom
Billy Grey
Boxcars
Can't Help But Wonder Where I'm Bound
Cluck Old Hen
Don't Get Trouble On Your Mind
Duck River
Don't Think Twice
Fine Times at Our House
Galway Girl
High on the Mountain
I Truly Understand That You Love Another Man
In Front of the Alamo
Last Thing on my Mind
Meet Me At the Creek
Miss the Mississippi
Red Prairie Dawn
Red Rocking Chair
Rose in the Mountain
Sally in the Garden/Julie Delaney
Train on the Island
Winder Slide

I've enjoyed getting tighter on specific arrangements, as well as challenging myself to work on my leads and bowing, to add different dynamics to various parts of different songs.

The uke guy's church is having outdoor services on Wed eves. This Wed we are playing 5 songs throughout the service, after which we'll hang out and play for another hour or so. Church is right off the town's main drag, so there should be some passersby. Should be a pleasant summer evening.

No aggressive plans for the group, but can imagine working into the senior center/open mic circuit. I'll let you know how it all works out.

flip18436572
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Re: Upcoming "gig"

Post by flip18436572 » Mon Jul 10, 2017 3:19 pm

Having fun and getting better!!! Can't ask for much more.

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seenoweevil
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Re: Upcoming "gig"

Post by seenoweevil » Wed Jul 19, 2017 5:31 pm

Sounds Awesome!!
my band schedule page:
http://www.leipersforkbluegrassgroup.com/id3.html" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

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Re: Upcoming "gig"

Post by Dinsdale » Wed Aug 16, 2017 8:36 pm

Well, after wowing the churchfolk, we are aiming at the old folks! Gonna hit the retirement home circuit, getting paid in coffee and cookies! This is gonna be BIG! :lol:

Seriously, really fun to have been playing with the same 5 folk w/ some regularity - as opposed to just jamming. Even my own jaded ears had to admit that we sounded damned decent yesterday. What I really like is that the tunes we play sound quite different than the versions we started with, so we're not just copying what someone else did.

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Dinsdale
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Re: Upcoming "gig"

Post by Dinsdale » Sun Sep 10, 2017 12:38 pm

Branching out - this p.m. I'm playing at a squaredance! In an actual barn! A buddy texted me that he was getting a band together for it and could really use a solid bassplayer. I responded asking if he wanted me to recommend someone! ;)

Actually, this guy is really well connected, so it was an honor to be asked. Playing pretty straightforward tunes, but I'm really looking forward to siply driving a solid beat for my bandmates and - most importantly - the caller and the dancers.

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Re: Upcoming "gig"

Post by seenoweevil » Sun Sep 10, 2017 6:14 pm

Man, that's great! I hope you'll post a video or two on here for us to check out(hint, hint!). I love to watch square dancing. I used to do some many pounds ago!
my band schedule page:
http://www.leipersforkbluegrassgroup.com/id3.html" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

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Re: Upcoming "gig"

Post by Dinsdale » Thu Sep 14, 2017 4:15 pm

It was a really good time. And a paying gig, no less. Folding money - in ADDITION to cupcakes! :lol:

The only vids available are just of the band, and nothing really to look at/hear. In fact, the camera was next to the guitar, and I can't hear my bass at all.

There were 4 of us - guitar and basss, w/ 2 fiddles in between. We were lined up in a row on a narrow stage. I couldn't hear the guitar or see his hands. The songs were pretty basic, but more than once the 2 fiddlers would get together and say, "Let's play Climbing those Golden Stairs." So I'd flip through my chord sheet and start playing - not realizing that they had changed their minds and decided instead to play "Dog Chased a Possum up the White Oak Tree"! So the first couple of times thru a song could be a tad rough. :lol:

The first half was better than the second. I think I might have gotten fatigued playing the songs for so long and at a pretty brisk pace. I mean, no one else probably noticed much, but I wasn't quite as on top of the beat - felt like I was lagging just a hair at times. But the 1st half was rock solid.

It was in a really neat old barn. Was great fun to see all the folk having such a great time. Banging into each other, getting lost, and laughing. And did I mention I got paid!

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Dinsdale
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Re: Upcoming "gig"

Post by Dinsdale » Sun Oct 01, 2017 4:31 pm

Man - this place is dead!

Gig at the old folks' place went well. Amazing how many mistakes I made in tunes I know so well! But nothing huge, and the audience didn't notice. I noticed that I was really solid while I intently paid attention to the other pickers. But then I'd remember I ought to look at the audience - andmaybe even smile occasionally - and would more often then not slip up. Maybe I'll eventually be able to walk and chew gum...

Only bowed on one song, but went pretty well. And my vocals on 2 songs were quite solid - surprised even myself! ;)

Couple of lessons. We need a "frontman" to introduce the songs (and fill time while the banjo tunes!) Also, we need to specify which tunes the one guy plays banjo vs mando on, so as to hit all of the banjo tunes in one key, before moving to another key...

Definitely plan on doing this more often. The folk were REALLY happy to have us there, and it definitely is a different feeling than playing in our houses. Everyone has busy schedules, so to start we're just thinking once a month or every other month, and maybe checking out bars/restaurants.

We compiled a songlist divided into "Reasonably Solid" and "Works in Progress." Easily have a couple of hours of material. Each time we get together, I'm keeping track of the tunes we play, to help us refine future sessions. Lotta fun!

Man, we're even discussing coming up with a name - which may be the most difficult part! :lol:

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Dinsdale
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Re: Upcoming "gig"

Post by Dinsdale » Sun Oct 01, 2017 4:41 pm

seenoweevil wrote:
Sun Sep 10, 2017 6:14 pm
Man, that's great! I hope you'll post a video or two on here for us to check out(hint, hint!). I love to watch square dancing. I used to do some many pounds ago!
Against my better judgment, here's something up on Youtube. I think there are a total of 4 labelled "Ladies Banjo Society of Illinois" (don't ask!) No real shots of the dancers, the sound is horrible, can't hear me at all (not that I was doing anything much), but you can see me craning my neck to see the guitarist's hands, or my chord sheet on the floor, or hunching to make Quasimodo proud to try to hear myself! :lol:

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Re: Upcoming "gig"

Post by flip18436572 » Tue Oct 03, 2017 4:22 pm

Dinsdale wrote:
Sun Oct 01, 2017 4:31 pm
Man - this place is dead!
You are very correct. I don't even play bluegrass anymore, because there are not people wanting to in the area. And only a few people post anymore. Good job on the gigs, and one of my problems is writing down the songs we decided to play or think about playing.

We played a 5 hour gig the other night and we only played one song twice and that was because they brought up extra money to hear it again. :-)

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