Playing or singing in front of an audience.

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54
votes
10answers
2k views

How do professional accompanying musicians (seem to) figure out songs instantly?

Sometimes, when I'm watching any TV show which has a live hired band for accompanying and they have a musician guest, the host will ask for them to sing something on spot (that wasn't really planned), ...
46
votes
19answers
9k views

How to play a song without making mistakes?

I have played keyboard quite a while and now I'm starting to practice some classical musics like Fur Elise. When I see a live performance of any musical instrument, there seems to be no error at all. ...
35
votes
16answers
7k views

What do you do when a string breaks or you drop your pick on stage?

One of my nightmares when I'm on stage is breaking a string or losing my pick. The former has happened to me before once, and also once right before I had to go on stage. Are there any tips my ...
35
votes
16answers
6k views

How can I overcome the fear of performing in front of an audience?

I have been learning how to play Spanish guitar for more than two years and half. Every time my friends ask me to play something, I get scared and my hands start to shake. How to break this fear? I ...
25
votes
6answers
3k views

How do jazz players communicate while playing?

When a jazz group is playing and improvising, how do they communicate so as not to produce cacophony? Somehow, one player's choices and intuition need to guide the other players so that they can ...
18
votes
5answers
2k views

How do you determine if you're ready to join a band?

I've been pondering joining a band for some time now, but I usually get stalled at deciding whether or not I should spend more time learning to play first. I don't want to go through potential ...
16
votes
4answers
1k views

Stage volume levels in rehearsal and performance

Two questions in one here. Often when rehearsing or at gigs, I'm asked to turn up my volume "'Cos we can't hear you!" when the band is already quite loud. Very rarely will the others turn down to ...
15
votes
6answers
1k views

How to prevent a string from breaking during a performance?

Especially for the guitar, but also for other relevant string instruments, I've had my string break while practicing. I feel like such things could happen at any moment, this made me wonder... How to ...
15
votes
4answers
295 views

How do I keep my concentration going to the end and not get distracted thinking about how well it's going?

Often when I am performing a piece of music and it's going really well - all that practice really paid off! - I start thinking, "wow, things are going really well. This sounds really good!" But as ...
14
votes
8answers
353 views

Keeping time when tired

When I'm playing late night gigs, I find that my drumming is generally a lot slower. The timing is consistent throughout the songs, but I just start them slower. When I'm playing early gigs or had a ...
14
votes
4answers
839 views

What exactly is the act of playing behind the beat?

I am a guitarist trying to improve my rhythmic feel and have been told to play a little more behind the beat. This is in a studio setting. How should I approach this to be more consistant in playing ...
14
votes
4answers
815 views

How do you successfully share another drummer's kit at a show?

The typical indie band showcase has 2 or 3 bands on a bill, and it usually makes logistic sense to share a backline (drums, bass amp, and maybe guitar amps). Some stage managers, or entire festivals, ...
13
votes
8answers
5k views

How to select a key-signature for a song

There are so many songs in pretty odd key-signatures like 4,5,6 sharps or flats. At least this is my impression when I listen to songs on the radio/net while trying to follow them on my piano/guitar. ...
13
votes
3answers
602 views

What is a reasonable price for a performance?

I am a musician myself, mainly playing piano and marimba. Up till now, I did not do much performing, mostly playing by myself or in front of family and close friends, as well as playing in an ...
13
votes
3answers
228 views

Is it acceptable to play the same note simultaneously on different strings on cello?

For a piece I am performing with a local school orchestra, a final open A is to undergo an "insane" crescendo to a Fortissississimo, which our conductor interprets as "as loud as possible." A fellow ...
13
votes
5answers
2k views

Tips for playing outdoors in cold weather?

A few years ago our church band had a gig playing early in the morning to a volunteer crew to get them pumped for the day ahead. It was about 7AM and in the 30s F. It's a good thing I was only playing ...
12
votes
9answers
368 views

Should I worry about painful fingertips?

I just started to learn playing the (electric only for now) guitar, and I love it! I've read on a few pages that it was normal for my fingertips (those that I use on the fret board) to hurt in the ...
11
votes
3answers
251 views

Why do I get more tired when I play on stage?

When I practice guitar on my own at home or with my band, I can play for ~1.5 to 2 hours without getting really tired. When I am on a stage and we play a gig, I get really tired on the first half ...
10
votes
5answers
462 views

Keeping rhythm when performing live without a drummer

I'm a member of a small band, and a common problem that arises when playing faster-paced music is keeping everyone in sync, rhythm wise. It goes without saying that one person falling out of time can ...
10
votes
2answers
996 views

How will a long break affect a singer's voice?

If a singer takes a long break from singing, be it many weeks, months, or years, how severely will it affect his ability to sing (vocal range, singing technique, etc)?
9
votes
7answers
6k views

How is electronic music performed live?

I produce electronic music like electro house/dubstep. I am releasing it on the internet for some time, and I think it's time to do a couple of live performances. How can I perform it live?
9
votes
2answers
166 views

Do classical and rock musicians train with different goals?

I expect most musicians aim to master the instrument they play. But articles & interviews I've read suggest that: Classical musicians: Place importance on precision and theoretical knowledge ...
8
votes
3answers
257 views

What are the challenges I might face when I switch from electronic drum-kit (Yamaha DD65) to an acoustic drum-set?

I currently play drums on a Yamaha DD65. Never played on an acoustic before. So I was wondering what kind of issues I might have when I switch. Is there anything I should keep in mind when I play on ...
8
votes
4answers
909 views

Practice before a gig - bored of material

I'm doing a gig soon, together with a friend. We will play songs written by myself, at a small local venue. The last couple of weeks, I've been practising a lot. I now know the songs flawlessly, ...
8
votes
2answers
719 views

Is it easier to play on a Grand Piano than an Upright Piano?

I was just wondering if it's easier to play on a Grand Piano comparing to an upright ? Like can someone play well on a grand if he's used to an upright... I also wanted to know if the keys weight on ...
8
votes
1answer
1k views

common mistakes made when singing

What are some of the most common mistakes made by people singing without the ability to get a vocal coach? Although I don't like my voice all that much, I would like to make it tolerable since its a ...
8
votes
3answers
358 views

Baroque Performance Tips

What are some recommendations for performing Baroque music? My studio professor seems to think that I can improvise in the Baroque style as easily as breathing -- which is sadly not true. The ...
7
votes
3answers
269 views

What are good tips for remaining composed during one's first public performance?

One's first public performance can be daunting in terms of the amount of anxiety involved. How should first time performers who have never been on stage (or performed in front of unknown people) deal ...
7
votes
1answer
5k views

Basics of stage presence for guitarists

Where do I start to develop a good stage presence as a guitarist? While guitar-specific stunts (like the guitar spin, etc) are good to know, but I'm more interested in knowing general rules for ...
7
votes
3answers
342 views

Playing keyboard at a wedding

I will be playing keyboard (mainly piano and organ) at a wedding in a couple weeks. Is there anything I should keep in mind (i.e proper etiquette, etc)? I've done a lot of concerts, so I'm used to ...
7
votes
2answers
177 views

Is there a pan flute type with fipples?

Has there ever been a pan flute with Fipples? If so what is this called? If not, what might be the easiest way to create such an instrument? NOTE: I asked in chat if this question was appropriate ...
7
votes
4answers
481 views

Can't feel meter when playing

I can't feel the meter when playing along very well, sometimes not at all. Note I can feel the "pulse" just fine. I have no problem tapping my foot to the beat in time but I can't feel where the one ...
6
votes
8answers
795 views

Dealing with different tunings on stage

I play guitar in an acoustic trio (vocalist, steelstring-guitar, double bass). Currently I use 7 different open tunings in the setlist. So I have to retune quite often, and we have to deal with the ...
6
votes
4answers
300 views

Overcoming “tracking nervousness” when recording a take?

I'm in that nasty position of becoming nervous when I hit the record button. I can be in my own little studio, no pressure whatsoever, playing perfectly, but as soon as I hit that record button, my ...
6
votes
3answers
2k views

Covering songs by other artists - does money change hands?

Many bands cover songs by other bands, unofficially at concerts, or usually on live recordings (for example, Kurt doing Man Who Sold the World by David Bowie, at an MTV unplugged concert. I always ...
6
votes
2answers
139 views

How to make a career out of music?

I have a full-time job but I am also very interested in making a part-time career out of music. The aim would be to continue learning as well as making some money out of this passion. So what would ...
6
votes
4answers
312 views

How can I rehearse and perform with PDF scores on screen instead of paper scores?

As a chorus and opera singer, I have gotten tired of lugging thick opera scores everywhere. Most of the music I sing is public-domain, and the scores are freely available in in PDF form. I am working ...
6
votes
1answer
465 views

Piano mordent with two notes

I'm trying to play Brahms' Hungarian dance №11 and there is a technical question. How do I play a mordent from the 4th measure? Whether both notes should be played with mordent or just the upper one? ...
6
votes
2answers
2k views

How should I mic a violin in a live concert?

Which are good mics and what are good positions of the microphone rel to the violin? Keeping in mind: confort for the player acoustic feedback sensitivity best quality tone from the instrument? ...
6
votes
2answers
132 views

Placement of vocal soloists with orchestra

A recent trip to a major symphony orchestra to see Beethoven's Missa solemnis led me to wonder. In every performance of this work I've seen, the soloists have been placed at the back of the stage, ...
6
votes
0answers
60 views

What is M-Base and how do I play it?

M-Base was a style of music played by Greg Osby and Steve Coleman. Steve Coleman over the years has been...cryptic about the principles of M-Base. What can you tell me about M-Base that will enable ...
5
votes
5answers
503 views

How to count big number of silence bars?

Playing in a jazz band there are often 5,6 or 8 silence bars. This is no problem as I can count it with my fingers. But how do you count bigger numbers of silence bars, e.g. 52, 112 or even more in ...
5
votes
5answers
432 views

Keeping a drummer in time with my keyboard

I'm a keyboard player in a party band, and I'd love to be able to use the kind of loop-delay sounds so common on modern processed recordings to fill out the sound. However, I face the immediate ...
5
votes
3answers
250 views

Is there a way to keep my guitar/bass cable from comming unpluged when I move?

My guitar/bass cable will sometimes accidentally unplug from my guitar/bass when I am playing at a practice or at a gig. It usually happens when I move around or step on my cable. Is there a way to ...
5
votes
3answers
375 views

Techniques to Improve Vocal Volume?

I am a singer who typically does acoustic guitar type performance, but I've been playing with full 'rock' bands for a little while now and am having a terrible time of getting 'loud' enough to cut ...
5
votes
1answer
259 views

Can a walking bass line be sufficient percussion for a (guitar) bass-brass-brass trio when playing blues?

We're experimenting as a Brass-Brass-Bass combo, and wondering what we can do to make the bass's job more interesting (besides throwing in more solos). Is it fairly easy to replace substantial ...
5
votes
4answers
8k views

How can I make my keyboard sound like a Hammond organ?

I have a keyboard. It can play the basic MIDI sounds. I would like it to have a Hammond organ sound. Since I'm not sure if I can upload new sounds to its MIDI bank, I'm looking for a way to 'effect' ...
5
votes
6answers
490 views

Should a new band seek every possible opportunity to play or just work towards a few big shows?

My band had its debut show a couple weeks ago. The guitarist and singer and I (bass) have been playing together for a year plus, and we started playing with a new drummer in July. I'm really excited ...
5
votes
1answer
167 views

Iannis Xenakis' Artistic Aesthetic and Public Perception

Did Iannis Xenakis write any music with intentions beyond absolute music? For example, music paired with other forms of art? For example, Terretektorh (diagram pictured below) illustrates that ...
5
votes
0answers
125 views

What are the most important pieces of equipment for a beginning DJ to have? [closed]

My girlfriend took some beginner and intermediate DJing courses this Fall. She doesn't have her own hardware yet—she's been using the school's equipment for all practicing. She's really into this, ...