What To Do When Auditioning For A Band
Some of you may be interested in joining a band to test and show off your skills. So here are some pointers I've put together to prep your for auditioning for a band.
When Should I Audition For A Band?
I always tell people to start auditioning for bands as soon as possible. There are definitely going to be musicians out there at your level. If you can't find any, try some open mics in the area. There are lots of open mics that are very receptive to new musicians. You never know who you will meet there or who might be interested in your talents.
Learn As Much As You Can About The Band
When auditioning, find out as much as you can about the band you are auditioning for. Do they like to same style of music you do? What is their image and style? Does it gel with your image and style? Where do they rehearse and how often? How long have they been together? Have they recorded in the studio, if not, do they have the intention of doing that? If you can, find out when they are playing next and go see their show. That will tell you loads about the project and will show good faith on your part. Remember, music is about building relationships.
Find Out What's Expected Of You Ahead Of Time
Always arrive at your audition prepared. Find out what list of songs they want you to learn. Make sure you know the songs inside and out. The most impressive auditions I've had are with people who have come in, sat down, hit every note, embelishment, or beat, and had no notes to help them. Show the band you are prepared. It goes a long way and means a lot. Bands do not like it when you waste their time, so take the time and be prepared. Also, find out what equipment you need to bring.
I never have the same practice schedule every day. Some days I will work on ear training, songwriting, transcribing music, other days I will work on repitoire, chord vocabulary, scales, and arpeggios, and even another day I might work on improvisation, fretboard memorization or music theory.I am not saying arrive an hour early and knock on the door. Things happen. There could be a traffic jam, the weather could be bad, whatever. Do not makes excuses, especially on your first day. First impressions are hard to break. Plan to arrive 15 minutes early in case you take a wrong turn. It will also give you time to warm-up, relax and get mentally focused on what you need to do. My philosophy is, if you are on time, you are late. Always show up early. 90% of this business is just showing up.
If you are auditioning for a folk band, you probably do not want to show up in leather with black and white make-up on. You should also not show up with dirty or soiled clothing (trust me I've seen it all). Be professional. Perception is reality. You may have never auditioned before, but if you look the part, people will think your are an old pro. Wear some nice jeans and a nice shirt. Pretend you are going on stage and performing. I do not wear my PJs on stage. I plan everything. You should have what you are wearing planned out the night before.