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#10275 by RhythmMan
Sat Jul 14, 2007 4:00 pm
Been jamming with an unorganized group. They guys are good, but WAY unorganized.

One of them reads from a book, & sings & plays. If anyone else knows the song, they can join in. If not - you're out of luck; no one else had the chords in front of them, and people were guessing a lot. Some actually walked out after 1/2 hour, in the middle of a song.

I guess that's what a jam band is . . .

When I invite people over here to play, I print song lists and chord-sheets for them. If the songs have lyrics, I have extra copies for them. And - I have the songs on CD, so they can take them home & learn them. I think you can learn more songs, (and faster), that way.

Anyone nearby (Madison, CT) want to start something organized?
And - how organized are you?
#10410 by fisherman bob
Tue Jul 17, 2007 3:07 am
I can learn just about any song, only have to listen to it a few times, don't need chord charts. Been playing bass and singing lead for over 25 years. To really get organized you need to find very experienced musicians. If someone can't learn stuff at your pace it's too frustrating to play with them. Whatever level you're at you have to find people on a similar or better level in order to make it happen. Hopefully I'll be uploading some of our tunes on here for you to enjoy, we're coming out with a CD this year it looks like. Later...your friendly neighborhood bluesman fisherman bob...

#10420 by The KIDD
Tue Jul 17, 2007 11:01 am
Hey Gang,

I went to a jam last SUN where everyone was VERY (too) organized...The material was a mix of new country,R&B, classic rock, lots of female vocal...Everyone had music stands with internet lyrics and chord charts...Most of this stuff Id been playin for 30yrs and the newer country ,I had heard somewhat...They couldnt conceptionalize (man , thats a big word for me :roll: ) how I could play all these tunes and not need the charts :lol: ... TOO MUCH info is available today...Their RS brains were never being challenged to HEAR how the chord configurations came together and why...10yrs from now , they'll likely be just as "theory challenged"...The chick (great voice...jesus) had a capo on most of the time calling out chords on her tunes that had no charts yet and the poor lead guitar player was going nuts hearing her say C, Em, G capoed at the 4th fret :lol: ...I was overiding her tellin him E, G#m, B :lol: ....We had a great time actually....They were all good vocalists naturally but had to have their words in front of them...As long as I played bass , we were OK.. :lol: I guess maybe I take doing this 30yrs for a living for granted...
SOOOOO, I guess theres different meanings for "being organized"...


#10421 by Vocals & Bass
Tue Jul 17, 2007 1:24 pm
How so true John, Being organized. I have found also being prepaired [As you stated] is the point. The longer I play, The more I learn. I like to give CDs to the covers, etc. before getting together with a musician. Of course, As a 'fill in' musician with a band, I hear you Bro! Have to be prepaired, Cover up mistakes the best you can. Ive done the chord exchange on live stage, I guess it gets you through the show. Sometimes you may only have a two hour notice before you have to play. Be prepaired for the worst, & hope for the best.

#10426 by N1GHTM4R3GR33N
Tue Jul 17, 2007 5:17 pm
that sounds painful being organized would never happen with me.
#10448 by Jacquee Rae
Tue Jul 17, 2007 9:25 pm
As a control freak, It would frustrate me to have things disorganized, but I am learning that being completely together sometimes takes the fun out of things.

I recently auditioned for a band that told me to show up at a gig and we will give you a shot. No set list, songs anything. They kept trying to assure me that they would know songs that I sing bc they have been playing for 25+ years, well to make a long story as short as possible, the band was basically a fill except for the band leader or steel guitar player and the lead guitar player. The drummer, bass player, accoustic guitar player were all MIA. I knew one song from their set list. ONE!!! They improvised on another song and I sang to it bc the lead guitar player knew it and everyone else followed.

It went very well. They were so laid back that it helped me relax a little anyway. I am actually going to attend one of their practices next week, but my biggest concern is that I will get there and everything will be as disorganized!!!

BTW, they were using lead sheets with lyrics.

Maybe they will get me to loosen up a little who knows, only time will tell.

Just thought I would share.

#10482 by Irminsul
Wed Jul 18, 2007 7:05 pm
Jaquee I've seen all variations of that stuff. I think what dictates whether an unorganized jam or improv works or not is simply down to the ability of the other players.

Late in June, a jazz/ambient/experimental group here locally asked if I wanted to improv with them at our Utah Arts Festival. At first I was hesitant because number one, I am not a jazz musician, and two, their music is WAAAAAAAY out there if you know what I mean. Plus, we never even got a "run through" for me to get a handle on playing with them. So I really had my butt out there on a limb, so to speak. Well lo and behold, stage time came and I could not believe how we just melted together. It was smooth as butter. We had people coming up to us after the show thinking we had all been together for years *LAUGH*. But seriously, these guys (one gal) were so in the groove of what they do, they made it very easy for me. It was a joyous experience and I hope I can do it again.

#10563 by Jacquee Rae
Thu Jul 19, 2007 7:44 pm
Hey Irminsul!
Glad to hear we both had positive experiences out of it all. :)

#10570 by phboo
Thu Jul 19, 2007 9:00 pm
Organized musicians? Isn't that an oxymoron?

Usually musicians accomplish things in spite of themselves, rather than because of it. You work with what you have--if you try to force organization on them (even if it's needed) you'll find yourself pushed out of the band for being annoying.
#10616 by Dionysus
Sat Jul 21, 2007 3:23 am
You seem like a man with lots of integrity. You seem real organized with your charts and such? I have been teaching Bass and Guitar for 13 years I have found that beginners always need cheat sheets, don't sweat it man!

#10624 by RhythmMan
Sat Jul 21, 2007 2:05 pm
In my original post, I was talking about songs which you'd never heard before . . . not a clue as to how it goes . . .
I'm not talking about the standard songs with 3 - 4 chords . . .
I can almost always figure out the chords of a song by listening to it.
What I was getting at in my original post was that figuring out the chords in a song as it plays - sounds like you don't know the song, and are just learning it.
When the chorus comes around, someone always would hit the wrong chord, until they figured out the chorus.
And if you're watching the guy next to you, to see what he's playing - he may be guessing, too, and screw you up.
So - the song would basically sound real amateurish, until everyone figures out the patterns.
Everyone's always got it by the time the song is ending . . .
But - by then it's too late. And, the guys who just figured it out, - heck - they want to keep playing it, now that they know it . . .
Some of you may jam with songs that have 4 - 6 chords, but when it's a song you've never heard, with a dozen chords, and 2 - 3 different rhythms, and it's got a different intro, the verses, chorus, and 2 different bridges, not to mention a different ending - it can sound like crap if you only have 1 or 2 guys who know the song, and 6 who don't.
Lead players probably have it easier than rhythm players. They have a better chance of grabbing a right note. 5 - 6 notes to choose from, with every chord.
But sometimes a D7 might be interpreted as a D, or a D add F, or Dm, or D9, or BM, or a Bm7 or . . . .
It's fun playing in a jam band, don't get me wrong. And every so often, it sounds great. And there's a lot of smiles and all, and you make new contacts . . .
So - overall, it's a good time.
I prefer playing songs where everyone is always playing the same song, but it's fun, and it has it's moments . . . :)

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