Pro Tip #15: Do you perform? Or do you play?

Written by local Shawn Pawloski (Guitarist from Midlife Crisis)

There is a drastic difference. Some people climb up on that stage and strap on their instrument. They may get behind the drums. They strap on that awesome bass or get behind the mic. The very first song starts and it is the slowest song of all the sets. Next they stand lifeless barely moving through what may seem like an eternal 3 hour set of mediocre performance at best. You lost your chance to wow the crowd. Don’t get me wrong, I am not saying you got to climb the rafters or jump from the top of the mains to the stage. Wait. I have done that. (We can leave those antics for Slipknot) But to be completely honest. There is nothing less fun to watch than a motionless band of musicians.

Play. First and foremost learn your music. The last thing you should be thinking about on stage is what you are TRYING to play. If you are thinking, crap how does the bridge go again? You are wrong. This is where the whole rehearsal thing comes into play. You PRACTICE at home. This is where you put in the WORK. Everyone in the band is busy. I got 5 kids and their schedules also. If I can find time to hone my craft, you should to. Time is valuable. Your time is not more valuable than mine and vice versa. Time is the only thing you cannot get back so don’t waste each other’s time. REHERSAL. This is where you rough draft the show. Move stuff around. Notice lulls in the set list. This is where you practice your PERFORMANCE. This is the high gloss polishing. You don’t wax your hot rod before you wash it.

Perform. This is it. Your time to shine. There is a finite amount of times that we may get to grace what we all love. The stage. When you step up on that platform, you need to bring it. ALL of it. Every single time. This Is where your hard work and dedication shows. Everyone in the band looking at each other. That is the best nonverbal communication. All in unison like a well-oiled singer sewing machine. You move about the stage interacting with the crowd and each other. This is the moment you’ve been anticipating. You posted about it for weeks on social media. You hyped everyone up to come see you. And boom, you just opened up with Live “Lightning Crashes”. Bye Felicia, They are out, you’ve lost the room except for that one person that may love that song. I am not saying that’s a bad song, but song choices matter. Don’t let a song get on the list that may suck the life out of the room. This is your show and your band. WOW them for three sets. It may be the last time, make it count.

It’s not about perfection, it’s about connection.

Something Jason Harlow says.

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