The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #26894   Message #329154
Posted By: The Shambles
28-Oct-00 - 09:41 AM
Thread Name: Weird open mike etiquette
Subject: RE: Weird open mike etiquette
"And you know, I learned something important through this open mike and through this thread: I've often heard that "it's about the music, not the musicians" but it didn't really click with me what that meant till now."

Marion I suppose that is why there are so many jams/sessions/singarounds or whatever. There is an attraction of such things for me. For it is possible, in these settings to create wonderful musical moments, usually very briefly but sometimes worth all the "clashing egos". There is a difference between a rehearsed performance and the excitement of making it up as you go along in public, with the adjustment needed to your playing/singing, to make the most of others inputs. Your place sounds like a halfway house and I think that you have the key to the best way to deal with it on future visits.

I always say (not entirely seriously), that it is the music that is important and that musicians are just a necessary evil. We are only human though and will always be tempted to put our personal needs before the music.

Just to stir the pot a little. It could possibly be argued that to sing solo acapella at informal gatherings is a prime example of placing the musician before the music and the ultimate thrill for the 'control freak'?

I say that not to insult but as something to think on. I will give an example: I was with a group of people mostly unknown to one another were playing tunes, with a few songs in a bar at a festival. A singer who had been present in the bar, for some time but had not joined in with any of the singing, walked up and said "how about a song?" They then sang a solo acapella song (no chorus), during which the group could not contribute and sat and listened. When they had finished the song, the singer stayed elsewhere in the bar but made no further contribution to the music being played and the songs being sung. I am sure they would have sung another song later had they been invited, but given the nature of the gathering, an invitation to contribute was not necessary.

I feel that if a guitar player had played a solo virtuoso performance, in such a setting, they would have been much criticised? Probably deserved, in my view. The singer did not appear to be so criticised but did receive a generous round of applause………….