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Thread: Remember your first...?

  1. #1

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    I was just thinking the other day about my very first live gig on kit. Oh boy, what a mess.
    It was in front of 500 screaming high school kids for their end of year dance. I had "learnt" (use the term loosely) all 3 sets worth of 80's covers 2 weeks prior to the show and was nervous as all hell. Talk about being under-prepared.
    Long story short....I dropped all of my sticks at least 3 times, one of my cymbal stands fell off the riser and nearly took out the guitarist, and I was so nervous prior to the first set that I was actually physically sick!! I thought this is it....my one and only gig. Time to get back to the farm and start milking cows again!!
    But by the end of the show, I had calmed down and started having fun and was even ready to do another set or two!! lol

    Anyone else want to share their first gig stories...?
    Tama Rockstar & Paiste User and Abuser......

  2. #2

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    Mine was similar. It was a fill-in gig (although now I'm a member in the band). I had to learn 8 originals without ever hearing them before, and I only had two 2-hour practices with the group before the gig. To make it worse, there were no recordings of these originals so I couldn't listen to them or practice them at home.

    Well, I thought the gig was an utter failure. The drum kit supplied for the night belonged to a very short person, so the kit had holy tom angles Batman. The "throne" was a dining chair. I only had 5 minutes to set up my gear (double pedals and cymbals), so I didn't have time to adjust everything. Half the mics were also on their own stands, rather than clipped to the rims of the drums. So, I was sitting really low down, with holy tom angles Batman, I dropped my sticks twice, and I couldn't hear much at all through my monitor. I asked the sound guy a few times to turn up my kick drum and the vocals in my mix, but to no avail. I also forgot the structures of the songs, so I was basically improvising my way through this metal gig without charts. Had to rely on eye contact. Worst/best 45 minutes ever. Now I look back on it, it was hilarious. The other bands members thought it was a success, though, and I was accepted into the band.

    Last edited by xweasel; 05-10-2011 at 02:44 AM.
    - Zack

  3. #3

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    Spessie!! Yeah mate, can totally relate..a high school one for me too. I had been friends with one of my best mates, John, who played bass, and we used to jam together all the time, as he lived 6 doors away from me. Anyway, there was a group of dudes that we couldn't stand, and three guys from that lot, Kieran, Wayne and Paul.....(who fancied himself as a singer....more later :P), well, because they had been learning Beatles tunes like Twist And Shout, wanted to enter the school's talent day...but they needed a rhythm section. And not to pin medals on ourselves, but Johnny and myself were pretty much regarded as the best ones, as he was playing the school musicals there, and I was acing it in the drum group.....sooooo.

    So there's the situation....these three berks and us. How's this? I tell them, come over to rehearse at my place....doorbell rings, Mum answers the door, that Paul guy? Walks right in without introducing himself or saying hi...height of arrogance......I could have sooooooo smacked him on the upside of the face for that insult...John was thinking the same thing. So we rehearsed once everyone was in, and quite frankly the vocals left a lot to be desired. But me and John were just thinking it was wiser not to make a fuss. So anyway, had a number of rehearsals going over "Twist And Shout", the guys realising that they still weren't always coming exactly in time with the big drum build up going into the choruses. Eventually, we iron that out before the big day.

    Okay, so what happens? There we are on the stage behind the curtains, discussing the cues for the song and so forth. Curtain goes up, and we all see the 700+ odd faces of the whole school. Me and John are totally relaxed, same with Wayne and Paul, shaking his head and mullet thinking he's all Mr Rockstar and crap (John's shooting glances at me whilst mouthing that great Aussie bogan insult..."waaaankaaaa"...cracking me up). But Kieran, doing rhythm, comes into the buildup one line too damn early!! So quick split-second panic between Johnny and myself, we launch into the chorus, generating a look from the other guys.....but we finish the song correctly, complete with the drum-fill right at the end. Audience goes nuts anyway.

    Thing is, the talk in the school grounds was "Hey you're the drummer dude....alriiight. When are you guys gonna get rid of that idiot on vocals, guy can't sing for shhhh"....ould end story right there, lol!

    :P
    Last edited by Drumbledore; 05-10-2011 at 03:43 AM.
    "...it's the Paradigm Of The Cosmos!" Stewart Copeland on Youtube

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  4. #4

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    My first gig was a battle of the bands at high school. Same band im currently in now. The lead guitarists (at the time, no longer in the band) and the drummers (also no longer in the band) girlfriends got into a fight. So the guitarist kicked the drummer out. So the band asked if i wantd to play for em. so i said sure, but i had no drumset at the time. and the previous drummer took his cymbals. luckily the guitarist had a drumset, but no cymbals! lol. If memory serves me, i found 100 dollars in 20's laying on the ground, wadded up at the bus stop, so used those to buy some cymbals, and we practiced and played, and it was successful for the most part. Ahhh...good times

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  5. #5

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    cool story guys

    ok my turn i was the drummer of the symphonie and at the end of the year we have a dance so they want to make a battle of the band except i was the only drummer in the school or the only one who want to play

    so they're was 3 band that i have to play with + the symphonie
    the 3 band was jalous of each other
    i have to keep secret of the song we were doing for each band and 2 band have the same song (black magic woman ) easier for me
    the teacher know's but she don't say nothing she could do we don't do this song etc ....
    so at the practice in the afternoon the war explode between the 2 bands and a big fight start 3 again't 3 i was with the other band on the stage at that time ,at the end of the fight they were broken nose ,teeth,glasses,black eyes, blood etc ... for the show for the night every one as a very clean pant and shirt but all they're face was bruise all over it but they were proud to be in a band

    they all say that a was a person that they can trust now
    all the school knows the storie
    i was the one who the chicks goes after for the dance
    i always have to go get girl to dance before that night
    what a dream night it was the last like that

    R.i.P. FRANK YOU WILL BE REMEMBER AS A GENTLEMAN

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  6. #6

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    Quote Originally Posted by xweasel View Post
    ".... holy tom angles Batman...."
    Quote of the day!!
    Last edited by Drumbledore; 05-10-2011 at 04:24 AM.
    "...it's the Paradigm Of The Cosmos!" Stewart Copeland on Youtube

    668: The Number Of The Guy Next Door To The Beast.

    "A random act of kindness; it keeps my heart in shape!" - Late8

  7. #7

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    My first gig was probably a church gig on trumpet - the first paid gig I did was to play a processional and recessional with trumpet and organ at a wedding. Nothing really fancy there - it was one of those things where I was working with an exceptional organist, everything was well rehearsed, and went off without a hitch.

    My first gig on drums though....that's a bit different. I was 33 at the time and my wife and I invited one of her colleagues and her husband over for dinner. I knew he was getting ready to plant a new church so I asked how everything was going getting ready for his launch service, just 2 weeks away. He said that everything was going great, but he couldn't find a drummer for his praise band - did I know anyone? I didn't really, but my wife told him that I was a rudimental snare drummer (Fife and Drum style) and that I could probably do it if I could find some drums.

    I borrowed a kit and some cymbals from a friend of mine, started working on the 5 songs they wanted to do for the first service, and made it official at an audition of sorts about a week later. (I'd always messed around with drums so I could do basic beats and fills)

    I don't remember how I played - probably ok. The idea was that i was going to fill in until they could find another drummer. 3 weeks later I bought my own gear and I've been a praise team drummer ever since, although I've long since left that original church.

    Funny thing - the drums I borrowed from my friend? DWs with Paiste signature cymbals! I had no clue what I was playing at the time.

  8. #8

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    I remember my first gig. 14 years ago. I was in 10th grade. Playing bass for about 10 months. I was bad. We played the "May Fair" at our school. Covered Blink 182 ! haha.

    My first gig on drums was about 5 years ago at a bar. Went decent.

  9. #9

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    Yep! Used to be an Eagles Club in the little town I grew up in. This would've been late 1974. First gig with some guys I went to school with was there playing for a bunch of older folks. All they kept requesting was "Wipe Out" which is probably the reason today that I hate even hearing it!!

    sk
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  10. #10

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    I don't remember my first "performance"......I had played drums when I was young in the school band....and played in church for years when I was a teenager. I never had any stage fright ever - even when I was three (my mom tells me these stories). So I don't remember them.

    I do remember my first gig with a "working" classic rock band that played every Friday and Saturday. I was 18....and the rest of the guys were all in their early 30's.

    We played in a bar in Pennsylvania somewhere.....and the first song was TAKE IT EASY by The Eagles. I was really pumped up....and rushed the tempo quite a bit. After we ended the song....the bass player turned and said...."Dude....have a beer will ya?"

    Of course....I was underage at the time.....but did have a few beers after our first set and settled down.

    I'll never forget getting paid. I made $75 for the one night. We played the next night.....and I made another $75. I made in two nights what it would take me all week with a full- time job I had at a local record store making a little over minimum wage which was $3.35 an hour back then.

    Even with an extra few hour of overtime factored in.....I still couldn't make that much in one whole 45+ hour work week.

    That's when I knew.
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  11. #11

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    Quote Originally Posted by EddieV View Post
    ...making a little over minimum wage which was $3.35 an hour back then.
    Heheh - you are aging yourself - I remember when minimum wage was $3.35 and I was thrilled when it got bumped to $3.50!

  12. #12

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    My 1st gig was a company Christmas about 28 years ago. We had a 7 piece band. By the time we took the stage, most of the employees were drunk. The company president rented 6 limos to shuttle home those who were too drunk drive and it was a hosted open bar and the drinks flowed. I was bit nervous to say the least but I enjoyed watching people dance and have fun to the groove I was laying down and after the party I was hooked on playing out!

  13. #13

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    I'm loving these stories guys. Anyone else?
    Tama Rockstar & Paiste User and Abuser......

  14. #14

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    My first gig was the talent show at my high school during senior year. We wound up writing an original song for the show. It was about the librarian who would always kick us out of the computer lab. We grabbed a big throne (not drum related, royalty related), and brought it up on stage and made her come out of the crowd, sit in the throne, and listen to the song. Needless to say, it was all in good fun, and she thought the whole thing was hilarious.
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  15. #15

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    My first gig was at a family friend's Christmas party. At the time I was 13 or 14, but the band that was playing was a bunch of dudes in their 50s doing rock n roll covers of Christmas carols. Their drummer wasn't able to make it so they asked me if I could fill in. They only let me know about a week before the actual gig, and I had a grand total of one practice with them. Needless to say I basically had to improvise through the whole thing, but it was easier because the basic structure of the songs were familiar since they were Christmas carols like Frosty the snowman etc.

    My first gig with a band I was actually part of only happened about a year ago. We played at this annual outdoor carnival/festival thing that they have at my school near the end of each school year.
    Peace, Love, and Rock N Roll

    Matt

  16. #16

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    This is great guys and I don't want it to be just about drums. I'd love to hear about guitar or anything else as well.

    My first solo gig as a front bar acoustic guitarist/singer was only a few years ago. I remember I had about 4 weeks to get 4 sets of covers together and rehearse the hell out of them. My mantra was if I get to the point of knowing the tracks inside and out - I can't fail.
    Well, I didn't fail but I was more nervous than I had ever been before.
    When you're in a band you have other dudes to bounce off of and if you make a mistake the other guys can cover you and keep the song going. But when you're a solo artist the buck stops with you. You have to be ready to play.
    My first gig was pretty low key with a crowd of about 20 peeps and the most noticeable was a big bloke wearing a bikie gang vest with MC patches on it. He sat there right in front of me watching the whole first set. When I finished the first set he came up to me and said in a low husky voice..."You're bloody good mate. Now, can u do me a favour?" (this is the point I thought I was going to get told to shut the hell up), but then he suprised me by saying, "Play me some Credence".
    Needless to say I didn't have any prepared, but I thought i'd better give it a crack otherwise i'll be wearing concrete shoes in the very near future. I promptly whipped out Have You Ever Seen The Rain? cause it was the only track of theirs I knew all the words to. Lucky I did, cause he loved it and preceded to buy me drinks all afternoon.
    After that, I was home and hosed and never looked back. Good times.
    Tama Rockstar & Paiste User and Abuser......

  17. #17

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    The first time that I ever performed in front of a large crowd was when I was in seminary in Kentucky 11 years ago. There was a group out of Louisville, Kentucky that had been inviting soldiers from Fort Knox to be a part of a night of fun and spiritual focus since the Vietnam War, and as part of my seminary training, I became involved. There was a song that was taught to the soldiers each week, and one night we had a full house of about 400 soldiers when I was approached to lead the song because the regular song leader was sick. So there I was, never having sung solo in front of anyone before in my whole life, and I am called out to lead the song, but first I had to sing it solo in front of 400 soldiers. I was soooo nervous, but it actually went pretty well. Then I started to lead the soldiers in the song, and I actually turned it into a round. I started singing in front of one group, then I ran over to get in front of the next group to start them, then off to the third group. Then running back to the first group to keep it going, and so on. It turned out to be an absolute blast, and I thought after that night that I would never be nervous in front of a big crowd again - right up until I played guitar and sang for a crowd of 80 at my current church. Right then I realized it was much easier to sing in front of strangers than in front of people you know. It has gotten easier with time though, and I look forward to the day I can play drums in front of a crowd, even though I am sure I'll be nervous.
    Quoting gonefishin: Just have some bacon with ya when you go pick her up..........youre an instant chick magnet.


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  18. #18

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    I was 14. My guitarist and I did a duo thing at a local talent show. We played We Will Rock you, and Crazy train. It was not well received.
    "The chances of being attacked and killed by a terrorist are less than the chances of being attacked and killed by your own heart"
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  19. #19

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    Quote Originally Posted by pastor_bob View Post
    The first time that I ever performed in front of a large crowd was when I was in seminary in Kentucky 11 years ago. There was a group out of Louisville, Kentucky that had been inviting soldiers from Fort Knox to be a part of a night of fun and spiritual focus since the Vietnam War, and as part of my seminary training, I became involved. There was a song that was taught to the soldiers each week, and one night we had a full house of about 400 soldiers when I was approached to lead the song because the regular song leader was sick. So there I was, never having sung solo in front of anyone before in my whole life, and I am called out to lead the song, but first I had to sing it solo in front of 400 soldiers. I was soooo nervous, but it actually went pretty well. Then I started to lead the soldiers in the song, and I actually turned it into a round. I started singing in front of one group, then I ran over to get in front of the next group to start them, then off to the third group. Then running back to the first group to keep it going, and so on. It turned out to be an absolute blast, and I thought after that night that I would never be nervous in front of a big crowd again - right up until I played guitar and sang for a crowd of 80 at my current church. Right then I realized it was much easier to sing in front of strangers than in front of people you know. It has gotten easier with time though, and I look forward to the day I can play drums in front of a crowd, even though I am sure I'll be nervous.
    Nice one PB. I bet you have a wonderful singing voice mate.
    I'm imagining a big booming baritone maybe?
    Tama Rockstar & Paiste User and Abuser......

  20. #20

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    Quote Originally Posted by spesman View Post
    Nice one PB. I bet you have a wonderful singing voice mate.
    I'm imagining a big booming baritone maybe?
    Ha. As I have gotten older my voice has gone more toward baritone. I used to have a nice tenor voice. I do notice that the tone of my voice varies depending on sleep, hydration, and pollen count.
    Quoting gonefishin: Just have some bacon with ya when you go pick her up..........youre an instant chick magnet.


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  21. #21

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    Quote Originally Posted by pastor_bob View Post
    pollen count.
    This is the big one for me. I have more top end without a low pollen count - but more lower end when it's high.

    I need the top end more than the bottom end from a harmony point of view....but I enjoy the lower end of the range when I'm singing lead. I just wish I felt better when I could sing lower.

    Twice this year....I've had to sing with tonsilittus caused by allergies, once, my throat was actually bleeding.




    Nevermind.....this is getting gross.
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  22. #22

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    Quote Originally Posted by pastor_bob View Post
    Ha. As I have gotten older my voice has gone more toward baritone. I used to have a nice tenor voice. I do notice that the tone of my voice varies depending on sleep, hydration, and pollen count.
    PB.....and my voice is bass enough to make the Russian Red Army Choir, lol......yeah I do a pretty good impression, singing "Polushka Polye" :P. I think that's from all the years of coffee and cigarettes. Seriously though, I used to sing in church choir until my voice broke, I had a fairly good tenor voice. Maybe that's why as a drummer, I find it easy to get inside a singer's head and support the song.
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  23. #23

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    My first gig on drums was at a teen dance back in 64'...we had a 4 piece band and I was 16 at the time and nervous as a long tailed cat in a roof full of rocking chairs. At that time, I owned 3 pair of sticks...when the gig was finished, I owned one pair of playable sticks. During the first break...girls swamped us, all giggling and touching and well, you know how that all goes...Right then I decided that being on stage was the place I needed to be...when we got paid at the end of the gig...I think we ended up with about 15 bucks a piece and I remember working all day long, hauling bales of hay and only made 5 bucks for the entire day. And one thing that I experienced that first time that I still to this day experience...the "Thrill" and the "High" you get from being on stage, the entire band is in the groove...everyone is playing off each other and the crowd is "INTO IT" right along with you...It just doesnt get any better than that. And we all know that high. No drug can get you there.
    Man, being a Drummer is the "coolest" job you can have in a band...unless you are fortunate enough to be a "Singing Drummer" in a band.
    You all do agree...right??
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  24. #24

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    Quote Originally Posted by EddieV View Post
    This is the big one for me. I have more top end without a low pollen count - but more lower end when it's high.

    I need the top end more than the bottom end from a harmony point of view....but I enjoy the lower end of the range when I'm singing lead. I just wish I felt better when I could sing lower.

    Twice this year....I've had to sing with tonsilittus caused by allergies, once, my throat was actually bleeding.




    Nevermind.....this is getting gross.
    NeilMeds Sinus Rinse.....I use it twice a day to help with my chronic allergies and now it's under control and no post nasal drip due to the rinsing! Try it out and you might get your top end of your vocal range back! Before the rinsing I was so miserable I had to get a tube inserted into my ear drum to help with the drainage...now that's GROSS!

  25. #25

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    getting a real kick out of these first out stories.

    for me as with so many others it was at a highschool rockshow thing with my band called IO (named after a moon of jupiter) dont ask me, erics idea, real geek, god love em.

    anyhew we played territorial pissing, owner of a lonely heart, and head like a hole(me on octopad), and to top it of jesus jones right here right now, classic one hit wonder.

    well to make a long storey short our bass player wore a red bowtie and attempted to perform a bow solo, not pretty.
    a jealous competitor pulled the plug on us midway through head like a hole.
    and lastly my bass BD pedal broke halfway through our last song, and my crash cybal flew of the stand into my lap! oh and we also had not one but two mediocre singers, one of which thrashed around on his back in a what appeared to be a seizure midway through owner of a lonely heart! all in all, not to pretty but hell goodtimes!

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