New to the conversation? Check out my greatest hits!


The Art of Band Negotiating

So creativity is correlated with psychosis, schizotypy and various other mental illnesses. It makes sense. It takes a very different type of person to say "You know what? This reality sucks. I'm going to make a new one!" That's why good, powerful, original music has such an impact. It should take the wind out of your lungs and leave you thinking, "Where the hell did that come from?"


It also means working with creative people just *might* be a *little bit* of a challenge. Ideas, egos, and emotions are constantly battling for their place in the ethereal concept of the music. (I thought of this riff last night after a breakup and it's PERFECT and why won't you guys put this in the song WHY) Conflict is inevitable. It eats bands all the time. It'll eat yours too, if you're not careful.

Here's how to avoid murdering your band members:

-Separate egos and the music
 When you come in with an awesome idea that you've poured blood and sweat into, it's hard not to become emotionally attached to the idea. (If you weren't attached to an idea, why the hell would you want to make it a song?) But what happens when someone tells you, metaphorically, that you've got an ugly-ass baby? You cut that vato! Don't take your idea's rejection personally, it's just a chunk of music. There's always more ideas.

-Be firm, but not a dick
  If something *really* doesn't feel right with the music, stick with it. You should love your music. But don't stonewall, make sure you say

-Why doesn't this part fit?
  Be specific about what doesn't fit. Rhythm? Scale? Context? Personality? If it's close but not quite, this will help you figure out how to fiddle around with the section to get it to blend with the rest of the song.

-Creating vs. Honing
  There's two distinct stages in the creative process, know which one you're in. It's important not to criticize any new riffs or melodies when you're Creating, just let them come in waves and bursts. If you begin to shoot down ideas before they're formed you will end up second guessing yourself, miss your best ideas, and come up with mediocre dreck that you worked on forever but still can't care about. Only after an idea has taken root can you effectively switch into Honing where you weed out good ideas from bad. Wait until then to criticize.

-Freak out on the good stuff!
  If you LOVE a part, don't just say, "That'll work." If it's that powerful, get animated and say something like "I WANT TO MAKE BABIES WITH THAT RIFF." Make sure your band members know how good their good stuff is. Good music should make you freak out.

-Fuck it, lets get tacos.
  If it gets to be vicious, get out of the practice room pronto. Taco Beuno has mediated every major dispute we've had.

No comments:

Post a Comment