This is a guest post by Jon Alan.
Having a garage band is the dream of many a young child who has a love for music and who wants to be a famous rock star one day. Kids of all ages spend time playing air guitar (mimicking strumming the strings and doing guitar player poses) or use their hairbrush as a microphone.
This can lead them to start what has popularly become known as a garage band. A garage band is just that: a band that plays in a garage either cover tunes (other people’s popular songs) or original tunes that they write themselves.
What You Need for a Garage Band
There are three vital instruments that are necessary for a true garage band. The first is a drummer who will keep the beat, a bass player who aids the drummer with keeping the beat and the guitar player who plays the melody of the songs.
Now, you may be thinking, “What about the singer?” Not all bands have a vocalist if they want to be instrumental in nature or any of the three musicians can double as the vocal aspect of the group. Of course, a great front man/woman is always an added bonus as they add another dimension to the group.
You can switch out the bass player for a keyboard player who would then play bass lines and melodies on the keyboard as the classic rock group the Doors did with amazing perfection.
Of course, everyone will need to have an instrument. When starting out, you don’t have to worry about spending a great deal of money on your instruments, you can buy good quality starter type instruments at your local music store or you can buy better gear by heading to your local pawn shop.
Being a musician isn’t all about bringing in money and girls, many bands find that the road is too rough and sell their equipment cheap to a pawn shop which is a boon for your garage band. You can also pick up some great amplifiers and a PA system at a pawn shop for when you’re playing live gigs.
Choosing Your Music Style
One of the things that you’ll need to do is figure out a style of music that your garage band will be focusing on. Hopefully, you’ve put together a group of like-minded individuals, so making this choice will not be difficult or if not, you may need to change band mates.
Some of the choices you have are alternative rock bands, heavy metal, soft or pop rock or an electronic rock band. There are obviously more choices than just those, but you get the point.
Practice, Practice, Practice
If you want to start gigging, or playing live venues, you have to practice. I don’t know one musician who has gone from playing a couple of times in the garage to signing a multimillion dollar contract. For that matter, there has never been a band that hasn’t practiced, yet has managed to book a gig.
So, be ready to spend some time, sweat and energy working out all your tunes and getting your band to have the sound that you want.
Jon Alan is long time guitar player who is now teaching the younger generation a love for music of all types and the joy of playing in front of appreciative crowds.