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Discussion Starter #1
OK, Sorry this will be long winded. I tried to get a gig at a local bar that features jazz. The guy didn't want to book me without a demo even though I've held down regular gigs in town for at least 10 years. The very next day, a drummer called me and said that a guy had cancelled at that very club and did I want to play with him that night. I did and the club owner liked my playing and said he would book me now without a demo. A week later [yesterday] the club owner called me and said a guy had cancelled for Friday [tonight] and could I put something together. I called the same guys that I played with before. Now the first time we played, we only had sax,drums and guitar.Tonight I'm adding a bass player. I just got wind that the guitar player has invited a guy we know to sit in on trumpet on MY gig without asking me. Ordinarily I might say "no" but here's the problem...the trumpet player has cancer and has been living in a hospice. He never sounded very good even at full strength and is a bit of an A hole to other musicians.Now he's really weak and I know he's gonna suck. I'm trying to sound good for the club owner because he is talking to me about a regular, once a week, gig.What do I do? At one of my previous gigs at another club, the owner told me to NEVER let that trumpet play in his establishment again because he sucks.That was BEFORE the trumpet player got sick and weak.I want to be a decent human being but I also want to establish a good relationship with this new club for the sake of me and my family.In other words, I need that regular gig.Suggestions? Thanks.
 

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If the guy is an @$$ go ahead and give it to him straight - tell him you don't want him to play because he has an attitude problem and you can't carry a sick player on a job interview.
 

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Carl H. said:
If the guy is an @$$ go ahead and give it to him straight - tell him you don't want him to play because he has an attitude problem and you can't carry a sick player on a job interview.
I 100% agree. If you're working and this is your livelihood, tell the guy that invited him to un-invite him. If it's your gig, you say who plays. Sorry the guy's sick, but I wouldn't risk losing the gig over him.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Yeah and here's another thing, the trumpet player used to come sit in at ALL my gigs but when he booked something, he hired a different sax player. However, we're talking about a fairly small town here and a small group of jazz guys so I don't want to **** off the local fan base either.Plus, I just heard about this thru the drummer and the guitar player hasn't called me about it even though I played a gig last night with him in a different band.Really, I just wanted to go down and play thru some Bird and Monk tunes without an politics.
 

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Y'see, we used to have a union. The contract always said how many players there were on a gig. You weren't allowed to "augment," because the union didn't want us giving something for nothing and putting guys out of work.

This issue wouldn't have even come up back in the good ol' days when we had a union.

You want a "right to work" environment and freedom from paying dues? This is the price you pay.

(End of rant.)
 

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Don't know where you guys are, but there is a union here. My teacher is a working pro in the union.
 

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You need to look at this as a business descision. Don't let someone sit in when it isn't the right business move. I've made the mistake of letting people sit in when I sholdn't have, its allways a drag and can pull the energy down in half a second. A person who is experienced will understand that it isnt a jam session-if they don't understand that, then you don't want them there anyways. That is sad that he is sick, but that has nothing to do with your job. good luck.
 

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I'd love to bring the union back. Personally, I love paying the dues and I don't get any gigs but, its the though that counts.

Anyway, call the guitar player and ask him what's up. Confirm that this is true first. Then, explain to him what's going on and that this would jeopardize yours and HIS possible gigs. Next, as him to back the trpt guy off th egig. If he's not comfortable with it then get another guitar player.

Lesson: 1) If you are not the leader then you ALWAYS need to get permission from the leader (and the rest of the band and the club owner) before letting a sit in happen.

2) If you are the leader you must get permission from the band and the club owner before allowing a sit in.

* These are possibly exemp if you are running a jam night.

The owner is paying you for YOUR services. Not his. He may even have heard the guy and is paying NOT to have his services. You don't know that until you ask.

PS - Your guitar player is WAY out of line on this one. I'd can him and get a new one asap if he thinks this is fair game.
 

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The fact that you even hesitate to chew out the guitar player and personally disinvite the sick gentleman indicates some latent "decency" tendency hidden in you! (That's a good thing in my book! :) ) Other than that, I can't add to what the rest have said and agree with most of it. Yeah, your heart goes out to the sick guy, but there's a load of protocol that was broken here to which you are being forced to deal with as the leader and da man on this gig. :thumbrig:
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Actually, Landrus nailed it. I've seen the guy [and some girl "singers" as well] totally kill any and all momentum.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
"You want a "right to work" environment and freedom from paying dues?" I don't recall ever saying that.
 

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Unless the guitar player & trumpet player are joined at the hip, or you absolutely need the guitar player, tell them both at the same time that there's no sitting in at a gig, just a fact, plain and simple. Be nice, but be matter-of-fact firm. :)
 

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Where I live there is an entity called "ABC" (Alcohol Beverage Commission) that also limits the number of musicians allowed on a venue's stage at the same time. You may try explaining to him that due to the local ordinance you are already maxed out legally and the owner doesn't want to put his license on the line. Worth a try since it is really nothing personal, just business.
 

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This is the kind of crap that made me not accept money for playing music for 20 years.
 

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I agree that my post seems cold and heartless. Small indoor venues that do not sell alcoholic beverages are very much concerned with so many musicians taking up space that could be used for more tables for paying customers (probably in consideration of profit margins, not to mention insurance reasons). Our thread host's local ordinances concerning this may be somewhat different. Some owners have expressed to me that this is what they must deal with. The good news is that the aforementioned Commission are not music critics. :cool:
 

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It's one gig out of your life. Explain it to the club owner and let the guy sit in before he dies for God's sake. If there's a sound system being used, mix him way low.
 

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DXCamp said:
I agree that my post seems cold and heartless. Small indoor venues that do not sell alcoholic beverages are very much concerned with so many musicians taking up space that could be used for more tables for paying customers (probably in consideration of profit margins, not to mention insurance reasons). Our thread host's local ordinances concerning this may be somewhat different. Some owners have expressed to me that this is what they must deal with. The good news is that the aforementioned Commission are not music critics. :cool:

Sorry DXCamp. My comment was about the situation, and the entire thread, not just yours.

I stopped playing for money for 20 years because I needed to remember why I became a musician.
 

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Morry said:
It's one gig out of your life. Explain it to the club owner and let the guy sit in before he dies for God's sake. If there's a sound system being used, mix him way low.
I completely disagree with this comment and I'm not being heartless. Do anything you can to express compassion for this poor guys plight, but you can't have someone you hired inviting anyone to play without your permission, particularly someone you don't get along with, especially if he sucks!!!! Would this happen in any one's day job!? Get real!!!! At the very least, if you have problems morally with my suggested approach, talk to the trumpet player and the guitarist and be honest. Tell them your concerns. Let them know it's your decision to make but take the time to listen to their point of view. What could possibly be more real than that?........daryl
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Well it's done and done. I walked in and the guy was sitting there and he looked pretty rough so I didn't have the heart to say anything. I hadn't seen Morry's post but that's exactly what I did...I talked to the owner and told him the deal and he was cool about it so it all worked out. There's no p.a. so I couldn't mix him but it was pretty faint anyway. The whole point though was that it wasn't just "one gig out of your life" because I'm trying to lay some groundwork here.Thanks to all for the support and suggestions.
 

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I'm really, really glad it worked out. It an itch with a b in front being the leader sometimes.
 
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