Monday, February 17, 2014

On Being a Band

When you are searching for a band for an event, wedding, fundraiser you find yourself scouring through site after site of groups claiming to be “New York's finest musicians,”"a really fun band,” “non stop dancing,” “we have played New York's finest venues,” "personalized service,,” and, you know,  all of that stuff. It makes it hard to distinguish one organization from the next. Having said that, however, we use some of the same catch phrases in our own marketing. 

It is true, that we have played for Kings and dignitaries, at the Waldorf in New York, Castle Hill in Newport in New England and in many places in Europe, even Africa and Asia. Our players and singers have done Broadway shows, won Emmy awards, backed famous musicians at the Grammy's and on Letterman, played for rock stars and grandmas. We are among the really great bands that come out of the New York scene – a center of the entertainment business where musicians, entertainers, singers are abundant and operating at a very high level. 

We are first and foremost, however, a genuine band, not just a collection of talented individuals.

We have played together for many years.  We have chemistry and solid, smooth communication on stage. We support each other and the music and task at hand. To keep the crowd moving, we all pitch in with our parts, suggestions, little transitions made seamlessly from tune to tune, so the dancer never loses the groove. We depend on each other.  For example, the aforementioned transition might be handled by the drummer in one context, or led by Donna in another.  Dave on guitar may take the lead with his solo or a rhythm, taking the set to a higher level. The horn players are always at the ready with parts memorized or improvised on the spot, and background singers jump in with parts to fill out the music. Meanwhile the MD (musical director) is thinking steps ahead, making sure that all works smoothly together.

So, while we are a talented collection of individuals with great credentials (we will cover that in our next post), we are, first and foremost, a unit, a band… Straight Ahead, the band. 
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