Hooray! My band had its first gig on Saturday night!
I’ve been a bit lax in updating this blog, my apologies..part of it has been laziness. But a big part has been my nerves leading up to the gig. For the last week it’s all I’ve thought about, and I felt weird about making that public. I like to sit on my nerves and pretend they aren’t that bad, then they don’t seem so real…I’m really a bit of a stresser before performances.
The gig went pretty okay though. Everyone in the band was really happy with how we went. I was probably the least happy, but that’s because I’m pretty demanding and picky with my work. One thing I think we will have to work on is our pace; I think that with the adrenalin and nerves pumping, we played most of the songs way too fast. This resulted in me having to work extra hard on the bass to keep up, and sometimes not being able to sing as comfortably because the pace was rushed. Also, I made a really dumb mistake in the last song and started it in the wrong key…argh!! But these mistakes aside, I did have fun. People cheered, and we had some great feedback. (Some just really nice and praise-y, and some good constructive criticism) Best of all, there were some wonderful moments where I felt really at home on stage and was able to “let go” and have a blast. When you are in the moment, feeling the music, there is nothing better!
It was also excellent to meet some other local bands and start mingling with them. The bands we played with were The Androgyny, Bat Nouveau and Cute Machines. We especially owe The Androgyny a lot, as they took a chance on us, and allowed us to open their single launch, even though they had only heard our crappy demo recordings so far. The Androgyny is an all-female rock trio. They were all so nice and encouraging to us. It’s really cool to meet other female musicians, it’s unfortunately a little rarer to meet female musos than male ones. They did a great job, and were very polished at performing live.
I guess, apart from slowing down when playing live, something I need to work on is talking to the audience. It’s one thing that always makes me nervy. I am never sure what to say, exactly. I mostly try to encourage people to have a good night. Maybe it’s not ‘what’ you say, but ‘how’ you say it…perhaps I need to practice being a bit more outgoing and loud..?
There’s a fine line between being yourself and being a good entertainer. The challenge with music, I think, is that you are very much ‘being yourself’. You write songs from a personal place, and you are just being yourself on stage (as opposed to, say, an actor, who is definitely playing a role). (..Notwithstanding people who have ‘personas’, eg. Kiss, Alice Cooper, Marilyn Manson, etc) I don’t have any supercool face makeup or an alias, I am just Bec. But maybe I need to bring out the entertainer!Bec. Not quite sure how to do that yet, but hopefully it’s something I’ll learn with further gigs down the road.
I’m looking forward to later this week – now that the gig is done, we are ready to start practicing regularly with our new guitarist, Ged. (Our stand-in, Andy, did an amazing job at this gig, though! He’s the one in the white ninja shirt). We are going to get right into writing new material, as well. I think with all the practice, we got a bit sick of our current crop of songs. I can’t wait to write some more experimental and atmospheric songs. Something I also want to focus on is ‘staying in the same place’ in some new songs. I feel like a lot of our songs have sudden changes and wind up going somewhere unexpected. Sometimes this is good, and effective, but sometimes I think it can be slightly jarring. I’m a big fan of traditional structures, and also the kind of song that stays in the same key/”place”, but builds and builds to a crescendo at the end (for example, the song “Hurt Me” by The Jezabels). I can’t wait to get into this! Recording is also now on the cards; we are going to discuss this ASAP and I hope to have some done in the next couple of months.
So, some exciting things are ahead!
Thanks again for reading – here are a couple more pics from the gig.
Love & light!