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Hey everyone, back with another video! This is part of my "Real Talk Real Tips" series where I give legitimate advice. In this video I talk about the things it takes to be a professional OUTSIDE of playing the music. I only discussed a few topics, but I think they are very important to those looking to play this music on a pro level and be part of this community. Let me know what you think!

 

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Well done, all valid. You were kind on the personal appearance by leaving out don’t smell. Love the part about engaging on stage. Nothing like seeing live entertainment and the band members are not into it. The dead band syndrome, sucks the life right out of the room. No fun!
Good job Dave!
 

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Great stuff as always, Dave. Going to a new gig is a great opportunity to network with new musicians you may not have met before...I know it's old school, but I've landed a lot of extra work by handing out business cards in these situations.

On top of showing up early & ready to play...being prepared with a few pencils, stand light (spare batteries), etc. goes a long way as well.
 

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Distinguished SOTW Member, Forum Contributor 2009
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On time for me means 45 minutes ahead of start time. The leader will be wondering where you are from 30minutes before the gig until the gig.So unless you like to make the leader nervous show up early. I wear black on black usually for night gigs and nice casual for day gigs. You are so right about moving and being in the moment. I subbed for a guy years ago and all the bands asked me to replace that guy. Simply because he was a stick during the gig and had his case packed and ready to go 1 minute after the gig. And you are right , you have to be flexible. I play with many people who have little or no school info so I have to translate what they want musically into my playing. And you have to be a good hang. and you are spot on , when you get back to the people that hired you and thank them K
 

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Good stuff. I was feeling pretty good about myself for the first couple of minutes (I always show up on time, dress appropriately, etc.), but then you touch on some things I probably need to work on. For example, I do listen to recordings and look at charts when they are sent to me, but I could certainly spend more time on prep than I generally do. Thanks for reminding me of that one.
 

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Positive attitude to approaching everything, including a gig....make it a way of life! And positive attitudes are contagious, too. Nice post, Dave. (A corollary, smile- it's also contagious and....it makes people wonder what you're up to!).
 

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Positive attitude to approaching everything, including a gig....make it a way of life! And positive attitudes are contagious, too. Nice post, Dave. (A corollary, smile- it's also contagious and....it makes people wonder what you're up to!).
for real, these tips apply to everything
 

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Well done, all valid. You were kind on the personal appearance by leaving out don’t smell. Love the part about engaging on stage. Nothing like seeing live entertainment and the band members are not into it. The dead band syndrome, sucks the life right out of the room. No fun!
Good job Dave!
Thanks so much! Totally agree.

Great stuff as always, Dave. Going to a new gig is a great opportunity to network with new musicians you may not have met before...I know it's old school, but I've landed a lot of extra work by handing out business cards in these situations.

On top of showing up early & ready to play...being prepared with a few pencils, stand light (spare batteries), etc. goes a long way as well.
Love it! I always keep extra pencils, stand light, IEMs, etc. in my gig bag - better to have it and not need it than need it and not have it!

On time for me means 45 minutes ahead of start time. The leader will be wondering where you are from 30minutes before the gig until the gig.So unless you like to make the leader nervous show up early. I wear black on black usually for night gigs and nice casual for day gigs. You are so right about moving and being in the moment. I subbed for a guy years ago and all the bands asked me to replace that guy. Simply because he was a stick during the gig and had his case packed and ready to go 1 minute after the gig. And you are right , you have to be flexible. I play with many people who have little or no school info so I have to translate what they want musically into my playing. And you have to be a good hang. and you are spot on , when you get back to the people that hired you and thank them K
Thanks! I always like getting to gigs early then going for a walk or hanging out. Love finding local spots before shows!
 

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Forum Contributor 2016, Distinguished SOTW Member
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Distinguished SOTW Member, Forum Contributor 2014
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Excellent Video - I really liked the part about interacting with the other musicians during breaks. (Something that can be difficult for me personally)

I would also add bringing a high quality music stand if one is required and wind clips or something for outside shows.
 

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Distinguished SOTW Member, Forum Contributor 2017
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I subbed on a gig last year. The trumpet player was a sub also and I was shocked that he was up on stage texting between times he played. He was doing that most of the night. I was looking around at the rest of the band but no one seemed like they cared.
Drives me nuts in all facets of life! The guy or girl sitting at a green light head down and no clue, the retail clerk splitting their time between helping you and texting, etc...
 

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I subbed on a gig last year. The trumpet player was a sub also and I was shocked that he was up on stage texting between times he played. He was doing that most of the night. I was looking around at the rest of the band but no one seemed like they cared.
+1 for me as well. I've experienced this both with bands I'm playing in and bands I'm watching. It seems to me this is one of those things that elicits vastly different reactions from people of different generations. Millennials and Gen Zers seem to have no issue with this. Most are so addicted to these devices that someone pulling one out in the middle of a performance is no different to them than someone coughing or scratching a slight itch. Baby-boomers and Gen Xers often view this behavior as very disrespectful and distasteful.

Being a professor at a community college I spend a fair amount of time trying to explain to young people what being "professional" means and that just because a certain behavior or communication style is accepted by their generation it doesn't mean their boss, who's likely to be a Gen Xer or Baby-boomer, will view it the same way.

People who show up to rehearsals or gigs and haven't downloaded or printed and prepped their music despite having access to the music and set list days in advance because they always expect WiFi to be free and available everyplace is another issue that comes up far too often.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
People who show up to rehearsals or gigs and haven't downloaded or printed and prepped their music despite having access to the music and set list days in advance because they always expect WiFi to be free and available everyplace is another issue that comes up far too often.
This is where airdrop is so useful - whether they didn't get sent the music or something happened (just talking about receiving the charts, not their preparation) you can send it to them super quick and easy.
 

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Forum Contributor 2016, Distinguished SOTW Member
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+1 for me as well. I've experienced this both with bands I'm playing in and bands I'm watching. It seems to me this is one of those things that elicits vastly different reactions from people of different generations. Millennials and Gen Zers seem to have no issue with this. Most are so addicted to these devices that someone pulling one out in the middle of a performance is no different to them than someone coughing or scratching a slight itch. Baby-boomers and Gen Xers often view this behavior as very disrespectful and distasteful.

Being a professor at a community college I spend a fair amount of time trying to explain to young people what being "professional" means and that just because a certain behavior or communication style is accepted by their generation it doesn't mean their boss, who's likely to be a Gen Xer or Baby-boomer, will view it the same way.

People who show up to rehearsals or gigs and haven't downloaded or printed and prepped their music despite having access to the music and set list days in advance because they always expect WiFi to be free and available everyplace is another issue that comes up far too often.
I also get annoyed with Facebook Live videos of people on their gigs. I don't mind when someone in the audience is taking the video but when the player is filming himself and looking at the camera more than paying attention to the audience or the music it just irritates me. When you are on a gig getting paid, 100% of your attention should be on the music and the audience in my opinion.........
 

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Forum Contributor 2016, Distinguished SOTW Member
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I also get annoyed with Facebook Live videos of people on their gigs. I don't mind when someone in the audience is taking the video but when the player is filming himself and looking at the camera more than paying attention to the audience or the music it just irritates me. When you are on a gig getting paid, 100% of your attention should be on the music and the audience in my opinion.........
Although, now that I type this, I think I remember Dave doing this on a gig or two. It's not so much the filming and recording that bothers me but more when the player seems obsessed with looking at the camera and seeing how they look that annoys me..........
 

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As always, great video!
You do a great service for the saxophone community all the time, and so many of us are very appreciative of that.
 

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Yes, yes and yes! I try to show up early but I let the band set up, do their sound check etc. without interfering so I am usually last to be plugged in.
 

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Although, now that I type this, I think I remember Dave doing this on a gig or two. It's not so much the filming and recording that bothers me but more when the player seems obsessed with looking at the camera and seeing how they look that annoys me..........
Hahah! I have done a few livestreams...I just set it up and let it record though and focus on the gig. It's a great tool for increasing your brand! So many people message me saying they wish they could come to shows buy live far away, so the videos on my channel and live streams from gigs are a great way to reach your audience all around the globe!
 

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This is a nice video Dave, thanks for that. I wish my teachers back in the dark ages had talked about this stuff - emphasis was on musical skills alone, with a nice sauce of snobbiness on the side :)

I am not a big fan of Mindi Abair's music (not my style). However, I **AM** a big fan of her, she's very smart and very successful, and what's not to like about a beautiful woman playing saxophone? She wrote a book about these very things, and many more, called "How To Play Madison Square Garden". It's a little over the top, but chock full of solid advice on how to BE a musician.
 
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