As a musician, few experiences can match the excitement and artistic fulfillment of playing with other people. However, starting a band is not as simple as just gathering a group of your friends in a garage. Building an ensemble takes time, planning, and equipment. On your quest for rock stardom, start with these essentials.
This may go without saying, but a band isn’t a band without people. When selecting musicians to play with, talent is obviously important, but it shouldn’t be your only consideration. Pay attention to rapport. Who do you click with, both musically and personally? If you fill your band with people you really get along with, it’s much more likely to stand the test of time.
Rock bands need a wide array of equipment. Beyond just the instruments themselves, you need everything from microphones to PA systems to mixing boards to electric guitar amps for gigs. Obviously, you need to operate within your own budget, but do whatever you can to invest in quality. Good equipment will not only sound better, it will also probably last longer than something that is cheaper but less well made.
One of the most important considerations for a nascent musical group is what you want your sound to be. What types of music interest you, and what can you bring to those genres? If you neglect to answer these questions, your band is unlikely to ever achieve any kind of cohesion. If you don’t immediately know what the sound of your band should be, don’t worry. Play around with your bandmates, and you should eventually find it together.
You have your band’s sound figured out. Now comes the hard part: Writing your own songs. Different bands do this is different ways. Some write as a group, while others play songs that individual members write themselves. There is no one right way to do this. Try multiple approaches and see what works for you and your bandmates. Once you figure out a method for yourselves, the song writing process will get, if never exactly easy, easier.
Musical success doesn’t happen overnight. It requires time, a bit of luck, and a lifetime of practice. The only way to improve as both an ensemble and individual musicians is to practice like it’s your job. Think of your favorite band. Every concert you’ve seen them play represents hundreds of hours of practice and rehearsal time. The rock star life is one of glamor, but it’s also one of deep commitment and discipline.
Starting a band is not easy, but if you follow these essentials, you can make it well worth the effort.