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Music: You should start a band

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Music: You should start a band

It’s the best way to learn everything around the actual playing of instruments.

Music exists to be performed. There’s probably some avant garde school of philosophers who would disagree, but while it might be interesting to read all those semi-quavers and what-not on the page, there’s nothing like actually getting up in front of an audience and belting out some tunes.

So. You should start a band. Here are some reasons why (aside from an adoring horde of groupies staring up from the front row with shining eyes).

Testing your ideas

Whether you’re writing lyrics, working out basslines or lifting samples from old melodies, being in a group means presenting your ideas to your bandmates. Which means testing, revising and improving them until they’re as good as they can possibly be. And that’s when you face the biggest test: playing in front of an audience.

A reason to rehearse

But before that, you have to practise. When you’re a solo performer, it’s only yourself there for motivation. But in a band, you have other people relying on you to learn your part. There’s no feeling like getting together and mastering a song as a unit.

All the associated activities

But it isn’t all about the music, is it? If you’re actually going to perform, there are heaps of other skills to master. Making flyers, booking venues, convincing people to come, moving equipment, fielding requests from everyone you’ve ever met to be on the door… Basically, you’re forced to learn lots of skills that come in handy in other areas.

It’s fun

For starters, you get to come up with a cool name for your group. Secondly, playing to a crowd is even better than playing to your dog in the garage. There’s a unique thrill to being up there on stage, entertaining other humans. And in 20 years’ time, you’ll be able to casually drop how you once supported whichever major act started out at your local venue.

(Or, you know, someone else will be saying that about you and your hitmaker mates.)

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