Opening for Someone Important -- How to Make Good Impression?

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I've got a gig coming up in a couple months opening for a group with an "important" avant-garde/noise drummer, and I'm trying to strategize what material to play. In terms of "good impression," it's less about making professional connections with the "headliner" and more about musicianship and the audience. Do I play stuff that is closer to the headliner's aesthetic, or do I play stuff that fits within the aesthetic of the entire bill but isn't as "badass"?

sarahell, Wednesday, 22 July 2015 22:03 (four years ago) link

can't say I've ever been particularly good in this particular scenario fwiw but I would say the latter

Οὖτις, Wednesday, 22 July 2015 22:04 (four years ago) link

part of my anxiety has to do with being a woman drummer and my desire to prove that I can "go hard" like the dudes

sarahell, Wednesday, 22 July 2015 22:10 (four years ago) link

In my experience, whenever I try to tailor my sets (whether it's as a band or DJing), it is always misjudged, and the best thing to do is play whatever *you* think is the best thing you do. Obviously if you have a range of things you like equally then that advice means nothing, but the general principle of "don't overthink it" stands.

The wanting to prove yourself as a woman thing is harder, though, and probably I would want to do the same thing as you.

emil.y, Thursday, 23 July 2015 01:55 (four years ago) link

Success on your own terms always better than success on someone else's terms

Οὖτις, Thursday, 23 July 2015 02:07 (four years ago) link

I once hustled my band a gig opening for *important cult figure singer-songwriter dude*, and as we're setting up to go on, the dude's manager comes to us and is like "I need you guys to tone things down a notch, I don't want you blowing everyone's eardrums out before ___'s set." I guess this was on account of us being a full band and him being one guy with guitar (although not exactly a hushed tones kind of singer). Our band wound up split on the issue and it turned into a big argument. In the end we cut our loudest songs and I really regretted it.

five six and (man alive), Thursday, 23 July 2015 02:13 (four years ago) link

one year passes...

i never saw this thread! you (s) mentioned this gig in that other thread and now i want to hear what you played!!

weird woman in a bar (La Lechera), Tuesday, 14 March 2017 15:59 (two years ago) link

I played this set/piece twice -- at this gig, where the electronics were too loud, and then again six months later, where the drums were too loud. Maybe if I go back and tweak the recordings a bit the balance will be decent enough to serve as okay documentation

sarahell, Tuesday, 14 March 2017 19:15 (two years ago) link

I have nothing to add, but this is such a super interesting premise for a thread, and I wish it'd gotten more discussion! I'm not a musician but it's weird how even as an academic I find myself thinking about similar things for the composition of a panel and its anticipated audience.

tales of a scorched-earth nothing (Doctor Casino), Tuesday, 14 March 2017 19:20 (two years ago) link

^this is so hard, I don't think I've ever gotten the balance right

(live drums vs electronics)

change display name (Jordan), Tuesday, 14 March 2017 19:22 (two years ago) link

xp - I have to be on a panel tomorrow evening, and I suggested changes to the speaker order so that I wouldn't be positioned awkwardly in terms of my topic!

sarahell, Tuesday, 14 March 2017 19:29 (two years ago) link

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