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  • How important is music during breaks?

    for anyone in a cover band/bar band:

    this discussion came up not too long ago between me and another musician.

    How important is music you play through the PA while the band is on break?

    I say very important. The band's show starts at 10pm and goes to the end of the night (usually 2pm) that includes the breaks you take. Keep the party going even while you are off stage by spinning a mix CD with some decent music similar to what you are playing that night.

    the other person I was discussing this with took the oposite approach. he says, the music played in between should not be anything like what you are playing and should be "lighter stuff." the patrons should be getting a break from music. He even said that sometimes you shouldn't even play music during a break.

    what do you guys think?
    Ostrich Hat
    www.ostrichhat.com

  • #2
    People come to hear music, so I say you should play it during breaks. Keep it light and simple (in comparison to your material), and low in volume so they can converse and relax. I would not use any "blockbusters" that might prompt dancing. Nothing more embarassing than watching a crowd that stayed seated during your set get up and rock the floor when the break music comes on!
    Id rather be told the ugly truth than handed a pretty lie.

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    • #3
      you also want to enhance how your band sounds, so don't play muzak of other bands doing better versions of the songs you are playing....or really hot musicians etc - nothing worse than being blown off the stage by piped music

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      • #4
        As a DJ turned drummer I can tell you that your set break music is more important than many band members think. IMO essentially you want to play music that's similar to yours, that is slightly less hot and not quite as loud. You need to keep the energy in the room and you want to play to your crowd (i.e. why would you play hip-hop set break stuff if your a rock band with a rock crowd).

        I don't think there's anything wrong if people dance to your break music but I would try to keep the hotter songs from being played when it's time to come back on. You don't want to clear the dance floor with you first song of the set!

        Our lead singer (and band leader) can get really wacky with the break music. Again, as a former club DJ, I'm always VERY aware of how every song (including the band's) is affecting the energy in the room. One of the greatest feelings as a performer (DJ or musician) is to be able to manipulate peoples actions through music without them knowing it.

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        • #5
          I would say very important - especially as you can sell yourselves as "Band and DJ" and charge a little extra for the DJ functions! We get our clients to submit requests to us but usuallu after the first set I play a lot of Disco & 80s stuff. After the second set I then wind it up a little to spinning out the latest stuff such as Dance etc. But it really depends on the guests - if the majority are in their 50s then Dance stuff won't go down too well ). So yeah one has to read the crowd!

          As for the volume - well usually after the first set the buffet is announced so it's a good idea to keep the volume down whilst people are eating and chatting. But this really does depend on if you're performing in a room seperate to where they can eat.

          Of course I gig at weddings and corporate dos so Disco in between the sets and after is a must. For pubs n clubs - which I haven't done for years - I'd leave it up to them.
          :eek:

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          • #6
            Originally posted by Mixxit View Post
            As a DJ turned drummer I can tell you that your set break music is more important than many band members think. IMO essentially you want to play music that's similar to yours, that is slightly less hot and not quite as loud. You need to keep the energy in the room and you want to play to your crowd (i.e. why would you play hip-hop set break stuff if your a rock band with a rock crowd).

            I don't think there's anything wrong if people dance to your break music but I would try to keep the hotter songs from being played when it's time to come back on. You don't want to clear the dance floor with you first song of the set!

            Our lead singer (and band leader) can get really wacky with the break music. Again, as a former club DJ, I'm always VERY aware of how every song (including the band's) is affecting the energy in the room. One of the greatest feelings as a performer (DJ or musician) is to be able to manipulate peoples actions through music without them knowing it.
            I couldn't agree more!

            >applause<

            E
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            • #7
              It beats crickets.
              Drumkat Turbo 4.5, Emulator X3, Superior 2.1, Roland Fantom XR, DTXtreme III, SPD-20 etc.......

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              • #8
                Originally posted by jrcel View Post
                It beats crickets.


                Yes... yes it does.

                E
                - your source for electronic cigs. Use coupon code "" for 10% off every order!!!

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                • #9
                  I stand corrected, those look delicious,mmmmmmmmm. Does anyone else watch Bizarre Foods?
                  Drumkat Turbo 4.5, Emulator X3, Superior 2.1, Roland Fantom XR, DTXtreme III, SPD-20 etc.......

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Mixxit View Post
                    As a DJ turned drummer I can tell you that your set break music is more important than many band members think. IMO essentially you want to play music that's similar to yours, that is slightly less hot and not quite as loud. You need to keep the energy in the room and you want to play to your crowd (i.e. why would you play hip-hop set break stuff if your a rock band with a rock crowd).

                    I don't think there's anything wrong if people dance to your break music but I would try to keep the hotter songs from being played when it's time to come back on. You don't want to clear the dance floor with you first song of the set!

                    Our lead singer (and band leader) can get really wacky with the break music. Again, as a former club DJ, I'm always VERY aware of how every song (including the band's) is affecting the energy in the room. One of the greatest feelings as a performer (DJ or musician) is to be able to manipulate peoples actions through music without them knowing it.
                    I also agree. What you said is exactly how I feel about the whole thing. Some may see differently but like I said. The whole time the band is there, it's part of the show. We are pretty much a dance rock band to begin with so everything we do is up beat. We like to keep it that way during the break. Sure we bring the volume down but...
                    Ostrich Hat
                    www.ostrichhat.com

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                    • #11
                      I play in a classic rock band that does lots of corporate/society gigs and few club/bar gigs. People dance to our music, but they get up in droves for "Electric Slide", "Cuban Shuffle", "I Will Survive" dj crap on the breaks. The leader also does dj work, so the music starts on our last live note. I've played V-drums in this band since 2001 and the formula always works. If we do a club/bar gig, we leave the breaks up to the house.

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Mixxit View Post

                        I don't think there's anything wrong if people dance to your break music but I would try to keep the hotter songs from being played when it's time to come back on. You don't want to clear the dance floor with you first song of the set!
                        Couldnt agree more. Music is needed all the time, space kills a night and if worried about people dancing to the break music and not to yours, then there is a big problem with either your band or your material. Make sure the music is not copied between the band and the interval music being played and also lower the interval musics volume, this lets there be more of an impact when the band comes back on. I played a bar that had the break music way louder than the band and when the band came back on, it just sounded really weak and thats not a good thing. The main part/act of a night should always stand out.

                        I would also point out how important it is to make sure people know that the band will be back on and how long the break is for and the same again if its the end of the show. You will be amazed how many people can leave thinking its the end of a show when its really only a break.



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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Mr Stixx View Post
                          I would also point out how important it is to make sure people know that the band will be back on and how long the break is for and the same again if its the end of the show. You will be amazed how many people can leave thinking its the end of a show when its really only a break.
                          And then again I couldn't even begin to count the number of times that an announcement like that WAS made, but done by somebody that you couldn't understand or make out 'cause there was too much other noise in the background or was made in some other way that just didn't stand out and get people's attention.

                          Mr Stixx, you sure DID phrase it right by saying "to make sure people KNOW" instead of just making sure something was announced. Unfortunately I don't think the part of MAKING SURE THEY KNOW is realized a lot of times by the band or club workers.

                          If people are paying more attention to drinking and socializing and "working on what's goin' to happen AFTER they leave that club", they're probably not going to pay attention to some announcement that's done in just a lame or nonstandout way. You gotta do it in a way that makes sure the message REACHES them but that keeps them feeling welcome and comfortable with activities during the break and eager to stay for more to come AFTER the break.


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                          • #14
                            Too right 3Cup. When I was working in Lanzarote, we use to say about the breaks in different languages to try and cover the different people that were there but as you say, its incredible the amount of people that will leave when the entertainment stops.

                            I also agree about the band not being aware of the attention or lack of, that the audience has for the band. It may be that you are hired by a bar or wedding party or so on but regardless of who organised the night, you have to act like a HOST as well as an act, making sure people ARE enjoying themselves and are aware of whats going on. Ive seen too many acts that have the go on, play, get off attitude and it sucks.

                            Again we get back to it not being how good you are, what licks or skills you have but the simple fact or whether you can entertain, if your not getting the attention to make anouncements, your not entertaining them enough. It may seem as though this is leaving the topic but its not really. Yes music is important during a break but its more important the audience know why its being played and whats going on (and when) after.



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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Mr Stixx View Post
                              Too right 3Cup. When I was working in Lanzarote, we use to say about the breaks in different languages to try and cover the different people that were there but as you say, its incredible the amount of people that will leave when the entertainment stops.

                              I also agree about the band not being aware of the attention or lack of, that the audience has for the band. It may be that you are hired by a bar or wedding party or so on but regardless of who organised the night, you have to act like a HOST as well as an act, making sure people ARE enjoying themselves and are aware of whats going on. Ive seen too many acts that have the go on, play, get off attitude and it sucks.

                              Again we get back to it not being how good you are, what licks or skills you have but the simple fact or whether you can entertain, if your not getting the attention to make anouncements, your not entertaining them enough. It may seem as though this is leaving the topic but its not really. Yes music is important during a break but its more important the audience know why its being played and whats going on (and when) after.
                              Word.

                              There's a biggie difference between a GIG that's at a club or party or some event like that where people are pretty much otherwise occupied, and a CONCERT where you ARE the event.


                              Mostly you're the focus and center of attention at a CONCERT, but just something consciously or unconsciously happening in the BACKGROUND of other events.


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