Forming a band

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Nuvola music.svg Subject classification: this is a music resource.

< School:Music and Dance

First decisions[edit]

  • Decide to be the leader, and choose whomever you want to work with. Make sure it is someone who you find easy to get along with.
  • Set a meeting time.
  • Don't be afraid to ask for advice of someone more professional.
  • Work up 6 songs and find an open mic or jam session where you can test out your chops.

Who wants to play what ?[edit]

(categorizing your band)


Once you've decided to form a band, you should establish what genre of music you aim to play (i.e. rock, blues, jazz, etc.). This must be known in order to select the instrumentation best needed for your band. In most cases, a band will consist of the following :

  • One (1) percussionist or drummer
  • One (1) bass guitar
  • One or more chord/harmonic instrument(s) (such as piano or guitar)
  • One or more lead instrument(s) responsible for the melodies (such as a vocalist or a horn)

Advantages of a bigger band :

  • Fuller sound
  • Will be able to play richer and more complex music arrangements

Inconvenients of a bigger band :

  • More schedules to coordinate
  • Greater needs in terms of rehearsal space and equipment
  • Less individual share in paid gig situations

Finding band members[edit]

The best way to find band members is through personal contacts and word-of-mouth. In a nutshell...networking. In this way, you can size up a candidate band mate's personality, level of musicianship, and interest. Some ways to get started are to :

  • Contact musician friends/relatives
  • Post wanted ads in classified papers or online sites (i.e. Craigslist)
  • Attend open mic or jam sessions at coffee shops, restaurants, music stores, etc.
  • Join a community college ensemble (will require the ability to read music and may require an audition)

Naming your band[edit]

Bands need names. You could always just take the name of the band leader, or "Frontman." If you decide to do that, one option is to add a nickname for the rest of the band, Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers, for example.

The other option is to create a nickname for the whole band. This can be virtually anything. It could be a plural noun, implying that each person in the band is one of them (e.g. The Eagles, The Rolling Stones). It could be a phrase, an adjective, a verb, or anything else. It is helpful to have a funny story behind the name.

A rare occurance is to use a list of the major band members as a name, such as Crosby, Stills, Nash, and Young. This usually only works when each individual is already well-known.