Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Keeping it simple for an open stage

I played at a songwriters night last Thursday. I tried a few different things, that worked and others that didn't. Luckily it was a small friendly crowd so no tomatoes were thrown.

First off, I tried using two different guitars, one with a pick-up and the other without. Not only was the change distracting, I wasn't able to hear the one without a pick-up in the monitor. I guess it sounded fine to the audience, but it was really distracting on stage. Note to self, only one guitar unless I have a sound checkup front.

Second, I tried a two day old song. I also asked a friend to play lead on it, without hearing it. It didn't go over that well. Note to self, give a song more time before playing out and practice before playing it.

Third, there wasn't enough plugins on stage for my buddy to use his acoustic for the leads. He ended up using an electric that was on stage, which worked OK on one song, but not so well on the other. Note to self, leads are cool, but can be distracting if not prepared properly.

The big lesson I learned was to keep things simple during an open stage.


At 7:03 AM, Anonymous Don M said...

I agree. Keep it simple but make it look difficult. One of the oldest tricks in the book. I think many artists underestimate what it takes to be entertaining live.

Many artists sort of pretend that they are just jamming or act very informal onstage, but the reality is they take it very seriously, and most likely - even the most seeming-informal comments or songs were actually very calculated.

Just my .02 cents.



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