I’m sure a good portion of our readership are in bands, and I’ll bet 99% of those are guilty of at least some of the below. A venue called The Creepy Crawl in St. Louis has the following posted on their website [via The Lefsetz Letter], and every single bit of it is so, so true. Enjoy.
Top 39 Annoying Things That Bands Do
1. Bands that feel compelled to bang on their drums and guitars in an annoying display of lack of talent before the doors open. Usually this occurs when we are trying to talk to someone on the phone or give instructions to employees. There is a place for this type of behavior, its called your basement.
2. Out of town bands that show up and say “We decided to bring another band with us, don’t worry, they just need gas money and pizza.”
3. Out of town bands that watch you order their pizzas with “the works” and after they arrive tell you “Oh, we’re all vegetarians, can we get buy-outs instead?”
4. Local bands with managers.
5. Local bands that have a girlfriend as their manager (Can you say annoying pain in the ass?). This usually marks the beginning of the end for most bands at the Creepy.
6. Bands that bring their own “personal” sound-tech. After seeing him try to operate the soundboard for 5 minutes the house soundman concludes that this guy has absolutely no clue how to operate a PA. Accordingly, the band sounds like total shit.
7. Bands that have more roadies than band members.
8. Bands that spell their names with a strange spelling twist e.g., junkeez, katz etc. After meeting the band, however, we are left with the impression that they didn’t intentionally try and spell their name with a twist but rather they probably just don’t know how to spell.
9. The out of town band that was lucky to get the gig, brought absolutely nobody, bitched all night long about their time slot, when told they had 1 song left in their set play 4 more anyway who when being paid out $50 in gas money asks “Is this the best you can do?”
10. Bands that arrive and state that they talked to someone at the club and were told they get to play 3rd at 10:30 and can play for an hour. When asked the name of the person they talked to they suddenly forget their name but are sure they talked to “someone”.
11. Bands who all arrive at the same time but no one is willing to play first. Subsequently the show doesn’t start until 11:30 and everyone has 10 minute sets.
12. Top 3 signs that the band will bring no one to the show – 1) 2 Weeks before the show they say “We’re gonna pack your place!” – 2) 1 Week before the show they ask – “What’s your capacity?” – 3) Upon arriving at the gig they ask “So how many people do YOU usually get on a Wednesday night?”
13. Bands who draw is so bad that even their guests don’t show up.
14. Bands who have no guests because they have no friends.
15. Bands who bring absolutely no one to their first gig and then call back incessantly to ask for another show and can’t understand why they haven’t gotten asked back. That’s fine, we don’t have to eat this month and we really dig watching you guys rock out to our empty club. Bands who fit this category don’t need to bother calling back because the booking guy will always be away when you call.
16. Bands who after drawing no one at the end of the night apologize by saying, “geez, after you booked us we booked ourselves to play at the Hi-Pointe last night and we told all our friends to go to that show, that’s probably why no one came tonight. BTW, when do you think we can play here again?” (Note: see above for our response).
17. Bands who pester you to book their bands “side-project”. Side-project is another name for self-indulgent crap so embarrassingly bad they can’t dignify it with a name and gives them a cover why none of their friends will come see them “perform”. (Would you go see your friend masturbate if they asked you to come watch?). Note to bands: think of your side-project as a project never to get booked again.
18. Bands who show up wearing “All Access” laminates around their neck. (Note to these bands: We honor these laminates for the bathroom and parking lot areas only.) I wanted to be an astronaut when I grew up but you don’t see me walking around wearing a spacesuit at the club. We’re convinced these people are recovering air guitar addicts from the 80’s.
19. Bands who right before their set ask to play without a PA so it won’t be deducted from their pay. (This has actually happened before). Sure, we’ll just ask the sound guy to go home for a 1/2 hour.
20. Bands that want to play in front or the side of the stage.
21. Bands that suck and then ask if you’ll swap them out a shirt. You know, our shirts actually cost us money and I really doubt anyone at the club wants to wear your shirt. How about if we swap stickers and call it even?
22. Band members that ask 10 times throughout the night for a water or soda (usually in a nasally whining voice). Typically this occurs when your in the middle of doing something important like counting down the drawer or dealing with actual paying customers. They usually like to precede their requests with a “Do you think its possible I could get a….” etc. etc. We feel like responding “Do you think it’s possible you could shut the fuck up and go away?”.
23. Parents of bands… this could be a whole top 39 list on its own… Parents who either a) insist on standing next to the owner all night and talking his ear off about how great their 14 year old kids band is (who BTW sound like they had never picked up an instrument in their lives before they started “playing” that night) b) insist on standing next to the the soundperson all night and making stupid suggestions on how to improve the sound of their kids band to the soundperson all throughout their set c) going to the bar while they wait for their kids band to play, consuming way too much, and then going to stand next to the owner and talk his ear off about how he used to jam in a band that was huge 25 years ago but now their kids band is going is going to hit mega-stardom any day now and makeup for his missed…. oh right, this is only supposed to be a paragraph.
24. Bands that leave gear behind. This happens at least several times each week and then we get the deluge of frantic phone calls in the following days about have you seen this or that piece of equipment and on the phone act like we should know where their stuff is. Its amazing how something that is so important to them the next day gets so carelessly left behind the night before. We’re the Creepy Crawl, not Bob’s Nightclub and Repository of Leftover Band Shit. Keep track of your shit and take it with you when you leave!
25. Bands that send us emails that say: “We’re XXX from XXX. We wanted to play your club on XXX date. How about if you book us a show, put a bunch of good drawing locals on that bring a lot of beer drinkers and then you guys can make a lot of money and we can put on a great show in front of a big crowd and get paid. That way we all win!” Here’s an idea, why don’t we book a show with a bunch of good drawing locals that bring beer drinkers, we make a lot of money from the show and you can keep your sorry asses the fuck in XXX? (Really, we’re not making this stuff up, we actually get these emails).
26. Bands who when you tell them they have 1 more song left because they’re running late into their set decide to play a 45 minute opus full of self-absorbed guitar solos which in the course of playing covers in its entirety side 2 of Pink Floyds’ Dark Side of The Moon.
27. Bands that pester you constantly to open for a particular touring band because they swear they worship their musical footprints and are the heaven endorsed guiding light of their musical lives. On the day of the show and after you told them sorry but the show was already filled up they don’t even bother to come to the show. However, someone at the show reports hearing they decided to catch the Story of The Year show at the Pageant that night.
28. Bands that can’t play longer than a 15 minute set.
29. Bands that can’t draw two people but keep telling you that they can play as long a set as you like. “We can play an hour, an hour and a half, two hours if you want.” That’s kind of a like a doctor rushing to the scene of a car accident and asking the victims “If you need me to help prolong your bleeding I can do that.”
30. Bands that bitch and beg to play a longer 45-50 minute set. They do this knowing everyone else only gets a 1/2 hour slot. We finally relent and rework the whole show to accommodate them and they still wind up playing the same rush-through-it-because-we’re-dipfucks 23 minute set they play every other night they play. Apparently they live in a different time dimension than everyone else on the planet. They thank you profusely at the end of the set for letting them “headline” for their fans but we make sure they buy us and everyone around us shots at full price.
31. Bands that give big lectures on stage about how important it is to support “the scene” but at the end of their set want to get paid ASAP and don’t want to wait until the other bands get done.
32. Bands that give long-winded lectures about respect… how we need to respect each other, the world we all live in, ourselves, God, our fellow man, other “artists”, Picasso, Left-handed midgets, respect this, respect that etc etc… What are these guys in the Mafia? The next morning you discover the parking spot they were parked in the night before is completely covered with empty water bottles, soda cans and Taco Bell.
33. Bands that are booked for a show but email every 12 hours to tell you they have changed their name and to please update your advertising. Call yourself Bobby & the Blowjobs for all we care, pick a name and STICK WITH IT!
34. Pathetic reasons why bands cancel. Bands that cancel 10 DAYS ahead of time because they have to go to a funeral! We feel so sad for these bands. Geez, I didn’t know your grandpa was being stored on ice for 10 FUCKING DAYS! Who is he, Walt Disney??? If your going to friggin lie, try and come up with something half-way believable please.
35. Shows where the 4 local bands collectively can’t outdraw the one out of town band you threw on the bill for gas money but through their own initiative and hustle actually manage to outdraw the 4 local bands (this BS actually happens!) We feel sorry and embarrassed for the out of town band who usually when getting paid out their gas money ask us quietly “whats up with the locals, who don’t they have anybody come see them?” and we tell them as loudly as we can “BECAUSE THEY ARE PATHETIC & RETARDED LOSERS”. Invariably (and we do mean invariably) their has to be the one local band who shoves the out of town band on the way to the door guy, lives 20 minutes away and brought a negative number of people, (they sucked so bad they ran off our happy hour crowd early) ask how much did they make and we tell them zero “BECAUSE THE BAND FROM 1/2 A CONTINENT AWAY OUTDREW YOUR PATHETIC AND RETARDED ASS”. Actually we don’t say that because we’re so pathetically nice, we usually say ” you guys rocked, let us know when you want to play again!”.
36 – 38: Bands that don’t correctly understand the definition of these terms –
CORRECT UNDERSTANDING: If a band has a load-in time of say 6:30 from that time they may attempt to enter the premises and inquire about loading in of their gear. If they by chance happen to arrive early they can occupy themselves with other activities to fill in the time, such as: visit the library, worship at a local church or synagogue or beating up the homeless guy living in the dumpster.
INCORRECT UNDERSTANDING: If a band has a load-in time of say 6:30 they arrive at 1:45 in the afternoon and knock incessantly on the back door. Usually they knock while the owner is in the basement knee-deep in standing shit working with a plumber to fix a leaking drain pipe. After trudging all the way upstairs to find 5 snot nosed kids asking if they can load-in now (and hang out all day!) they are politely told to fuck off and come back at 6:30.
CORRECT UNDERSTANDING: This is a person who actively works to promote a show. They promote by distributing flyers, plugging the show wherever they can and try to get as many people as possible to come to the show. If they have an out of town band booked on the show they take financial responsibility to ensure they get paid and are taken care of in whatever way they need. They also take charge in organizing the show and making sure all the bands know when they are scheduled to play and how the money works for getting paid.
INCORRECT UNDERSTANDING: This is a person who after asking repeatedly to put on a show does the following 1) fails to promote show in any way 2) fails to communicate any show details like lineup or order of the bands to the club (or the bands themselves) 3) makes themselves very scarce at the show , assuming they show up (they sometimes make a pathetic phone call just before doors to say they’ve just contracted a rare disease called pussyitis and to please take care of the out of town band). If they do show up and when questioned about things like band order, who’s taking care of the bands etc. only respond with a blank stare.
CORRECT UNDERSTANDING: Gas Money is a term used to designate an amount of money to get a touring band to their next show. It sometimes includes a little more than that so they buy themselves some fast-food on their way or if they are lucky enough to cover a room at a Motel 6. Generally gas money would be considered anything from $30 to $75 and depends on how well the show goes.
INCORRECT UNDERSTANDING: $200 is not gas money. $200 is we’re partying all night on the East Side and getting privates at Roxy’s for everyone in the band.
CORRECT UNDERSTANDING: This is a band that is engaged on a “tour”. They come to the Creepy Crawl while on their tour and often come from far away places such as the far corners of the country, Canada, Europe or Asia. They are on the road for extended periods of time, sometimes for several months at a time, in a van or bus and experience many new places along their journey. These bands are always entitled to at least gas money or more.
INCORRECT UNDERSTANDING: Driving up from Festus does not make you a touring band.
CORRECT UNDERSTANDING: A “following” is a collection of fans that attend the performances of a particular band. This is what bands try to develop to get ahead in the business and grow over time and is a measure of their general popularity. The larger a bands following generally means they will be booked more often and on better nights at the Creepy Crawl
INCORRECT UNDERSTANDING: A “following” does not mean all the people that attended The Queens of The Stone Age show you opened for to cover the last minute cancellation of a contractual local opener counts as your bands following (perhaps the rush to the bar by the entire club and club staff when you started playing was an indicator). And, yes, this means the Jager girls at the club that night probably didn’t come to see you and probably won’t be following you to your next show.
39. Bands that read this list and then send us emails like this one:
“dont take this the wrong way i am just a guitar player but ur annoying list was some what funny, but it makes u guys seem like a bunch of pricks u would not have ur joint with out the annoying bands. i frequent ur place when my friends play but if u dont treat the bands that deserve respect with respect they will not play shows and tell others and so on and so forth just a little concernced.”
… This is just a small sample of annoying things that bands do that we came up with at the Creepy. We could go on and on with this….