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Beginner Why do I let these things happen to me?

TimboSax

Deputy junior apprentice 2nd class
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So after a few years of not really doing anything with the sax other than the odd gig where I put down my guitar for a few songs and play madness, dexy's, etc., at a load of drunken punters (the best type of punter :) ), I have been talked into upping my game.

A week ago a guy I know from ancient jams contacted me to say he's put together a Floyd tribute band (there seems to be a certain age and then, pow, you have to do a Floyd tribute... ), and he'd heard me play sax so could I help out at their inaugural gig for a few songs. I tried to talk him out of it, gave him reasons why I wasn't good enough, wouldn't get it note perfect, will insist on using a penny whistle instead of the sax, have a tendency to flatulate with extensive blowing...all the usual excuses. Imagine my surprise when I then found myself saying yeah, why not, it'll be a laugh. For a gig in 5 weeks time, that involves me playing one solo on an alto which I've never really paid attention to and certainly haven't picked up in 4 years.

I've spent the last week puffin' away learning the solo for Money. Pretty much there now, next I have Shine on and Us and Them to come.

I'm not sure who to blame for all this, but once it's over and I've got my breath back and the little flashing red dots have gone away, I'll look in the mirror and find someone.
 
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TimboSax

TimboSax

Deputy junior apprentice 2nd class
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Always up for tips and help and that :)

I just recorded Money to send to my mate. Rough as a badger's rough bits, intonation's dodgy, a couple of squeaks, etc etc. He comes back saying "Brilliant, we'll have that!!!".

I'm seriously having to reconsider my opinion of his musical abilities...
 
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TimboSax

TimboSax

Deputy junior apprentice 2nd class
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Cambridgeshire
Being in a band is so much more than playing good. It's about how people get connected... To let the magic happen. It's not just about the notes or the dots .... In so many genres....
Ain't that the truth. The best band I was in had a vocalist who was all over the place in terms of pitch, but he was one hell of a front man, so live no-one really noticed and we went down a storm. Looking back at some of the recordings makes me cringe a bit, as you really notice the tuning problem...
 

Taz

Busking Oracle
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Rugby UK
Hey Timbo, nought wrong with a bit of Floyd, I’ve found that it depends on the venue as to whether the audience is really paying attention to what you're doing. Pub gig, fill your boots, play what you want and how you want to. Standing gig with a bar in the same room, take a little more care, try to get a little authenticity into your solos and finally a theatre gig, play with caution, play the right notes (mostly) at the right time and in tune as the audience will know your parts better than you do ;) Wherever you play, play with confidence and a soul full of fun!
 
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TimboSax

TimboSax

Deputy junior apprentice 2nd class
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761
Location
Cambridgeshire
Hey Timbo, nought wrong with a bit of Floyd, I’ve found that it depends on the venue as to whether the audience is really paying attention to what you're doing. Pub gig, fill your boots, play what you want and how you want to. Standing gig with a bar in the same room, take a little more care, try to get a little authenticity into your solos and finally a theatre gig, play with caution, play the right notes (mostly) at the right time and in tune as the audience will know your parts better than you do ;) Wherever you play, play with confidence and a soul full of fun!
Thanks Taz, this is a ticketed village hall event, so I'm thinking the buggers will be listening...:)

There are a few sections that I can't play (the runs in the middle of Money for example), but I'm pretty sure I can blag them. Confidence and fun aren't a problem, skill levels might be a bit of an issue :)
 

Taz

Busking Oracle
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3,633
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Rugby UK
I try to avoid getting the runs in the middle of a show! However, if you don’t play them exactly, you can still achieve a very passable version. I also avoid that pesky altissimo g (at least I think it’s a g)
Here’s a version of Money that I got completely wrong, I just forgot the whole thing but somehow managed to pull it back into some resemblance of the original :rofl:
View: https://youtu.be/S3zT-yjeajY
 
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TimboSax

TimboSax

Deputy junior apprentice 2nd class
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761
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Cambridgeshire
I've always said with my band - it doesn't matter if we muck something up, as long as we can keep going and keep it together. We had a drummer who would actually stop playing in the middle of a song if he made a mistake...he didn't last long.

Nice sounding band, I think ours might be a little more low rent :cool:
 
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TimboSax

TimboSax

Deputy junior apprentice 2nd class
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Cambridgeshire
Right, G-day is fast approaching, and tomorrow I have my first (and only) practice with the band before the gig on Friday (for which they've sold out of tickets, so it will be a full house). I've just got to get the muscle memory for the second bit of Shine On, and then I think I'm there (ish). I've been sending vids of progress to my mate, who keeps coming back with positive vibes, so it's either I'm doing something right, or the band has rather low standards :)

Problem is we've got some travelling to do in the afternoon, so I can only spare about an hour with the band. This is Floyd...each song is about a gazillion minutes long! I might have to say that we just play my bits, get that sorted and then make my excuses and bugger off.

Right, I've cleared the decks today, so I'm off for an extended toot :sax::banana:
 

Halfers

Finger Flapper
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1,523
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Hampshire
Right, G-day is fast approaching, and tomorrow I have my first (and only) practice with the band before the gig on Friday (for which they've sold out of tickets, so it will be a full house). I've just got to get the muscle memory for the second bit of Shine On, and then I think I'm there (ish). I've been sending vids of progress to my mate, who keeps coming back with positive vibes, so it's either I'm doing something right, or the band has rather low standards :)

Problem is we've got some travelling to do in the afternoon, so I can only spare about an hour with the band. This is Floyd...each song is about a gazillion minutes long! I might have to say that we just play my bits, get that sorted and then make my excuses and bugger off.

Right, I've cleared the decks today, so I'm off for an extended toot :sax::banana:
So there is video evidence...and it's not on here..?? Might be worth some more positive feedback!
 

MikeMorrell

Netherlands
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I'm not really into the whole 'tribute band' thing. Just of curiosity, is the aim to replicate as closely - as you're able - the exact notes and expression of an 'original' recording/performance?

The reason why I ask is this: as I remember - the 'originals' had some (deliberate and spontaneous) variations in their live performances. Audiences were disappointed if the 'live performance' was exactly the same as the 'recorded' performances in the studio. The deviations from the 'recorded' (studio) performance made it worthwhile coming to see the 'live' performance. The 'basics' stayed the same but improvisations/solos were often very different from (and much freer than) the studio recording.. Audiences came away with the impression that they had witnessed a unique, local performance of their favorite band. To a limited extent that might have been true.

So ... . if my memories are correct, you don't need to play exactly the same notes as on a recording. You just need to loosely play your stuff so that it somehow fits in with the song..

Miike
 

spike

Old Indian
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Half way up a hill
@MikeMorrell - I'll jump in on that.
I've been a "cover boy" for over 50 years.
There are numbers where the audience expects to hear you play the sax part note for note.
You'll notice it when you observe the reaction. You either did what they wanted to hear or not.
On the other hand there are sax solos in numbers that are not so strong so you can add your own interpretation to it.
Sometimes you simply have to wing it and wait for a reaction to know what to do best.
Let's face it - you can't play a watered down version of Urgent - it's gonna go down like a damp squib.

Bottom line is, some parrots can imitate perfectly.
We humans are supposed be superior intelligent beings.
So if we get our heads down and work at it we can even do the Pink Floyd ditty's.
It's fun - get on with it. I can assure you all the rewards are well worth the effort.
Practice, Patience, Perseverance.
 
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TimboSax

TimboSax

Deputy junior apprentice 2nd class
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761
Location
Cambridgeshire
That's a really good question Mike. Like you, I'm not really into tribute bands (ironic because, like Spike, who I agree with totally, I've spent most of my time in cover bands, in my case mainly playing guitar). Floyd tributes seem to be different though...and the top ones are note-perfect (I remember seeing the Aussie Floyd do the whole of Dark Side, and there were only 2 "mistakes" in the whole concert - and, yes, I'm sad enough to know the album well enough to have picked them out).. The thing is, Floyd fans seem to want perfection more than any other group of fans, everyone else is looking for a "feel".

In my cover bands,, we play a range of material, and often change things around to "improve" the song, or make it more our style, or just completely do a different take on it (at the moment we do a heavy variant of Gaga's Poker Face that will melt your face off, and really gets the crowd into it :). Horses for courses I suppose.

Anyhoo, I've tooted my little lips off today, and can now blag my way through Money, Us and them, and Shine on. Not note perfect, and those bloody ridiculous fast little runs can go and do one, but they are definitely recognisable.

As a bloke.

Playing a sax badly :)

Tomorrow we see if I can do it with the actual band...
 
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