Band Initiation: A Rite of Passage

Don't Get Caught

You may ask yourself, do I have what it takes to be in a band? Am I really that good? Will people really come to see my show?

The truth is, you need a band to go on stage, otherwise you might want to stick to the street corners, unless you can sing really good…. then you could do karoke.

A band is more than just a group of friends with a mission. It’s a calling, a lifestyle and the embodiment of all things rock AND roll. To get into a band, you must pass an ultimate friendship test that will stress your intrapersonal friendships to the max. If you can survive, you band may be good, even great. Here’s a list of some cool ways that I have been initated into different bands throughout the years.

1. King of Beers

Everyone in the band has to buy their own 12 pack, cans or bottles, it doesn’t matter. No borrowing money from other band mates, a king has to be able to get his own finances. Then, as an initate, you have to buy 2 fifths of the bands favorite alcohol, using money borrowed from friends of the band. This includes roadies, groupies and band-aids. How you get this money is up to you, but suggested ways are an empty guitar case in the band room, making a poster/flyer supporting your donation or creating some form of band memoribilia to sell for the band.

Now here’s how the game works. You, yourself has to finish all 12 of your beers by the end of the night. No cheating!! The first fifth is donated to the previous champ for his “wenches” but I’ll explain those in a minute. The second fifth is for you and your “wenches”.

The Wench system breaks down like this, there’s 1 queen or head wench (could be a girlfriend, wife, etc) and three princesses (groupies) that the king is responsible for. There is no taking the queen!! Any violation of this rule will get you removed from the band. You can trade whores… opps I mean groupies, (princesses! there got it.) but they can only drink from their kings chalice (the fifth).

To win the game, you have to drink all of your 12 beers and then put the empty carton on your head (your crown), extra points are awarded for the number of  whores (Princesses!). If you fail to finish all 12 beers or all of your Wenches leave the party then you are disqualifed and have lost your chance to be in the band.

2. The Mighty Shaming

This method is usually applied to bassists or newbies who are trying to get into a band that has been playing for a while. The key here is to make your new member do everything a band and their crew is supposed to do. Carrying the heavy equipment, providing guitar picks to senior members, wrapping up cables and doing pretty much everything a roadie does by themselves until they learn the ropes of the band. This also includes going to Taco Bell at 2 in the morning, Beer runs and cleaning up after the afterparties. In order to use this one correctly, a time limit must be enforced. Usual time limits range between 1 week and 3 monthes before you have put your time in as band bitch.

3. The Set Challenge

The new member of the band has a set of 7 songs, they play all seven songs unless they are booed out America’s Got Talent Style. The initate must have 5 songs that all of the band members liked or it’s hitting the road in search of another band (this is also called try-outs)

4. Groupie Fest!!!

Some bands require that you have a set number of groupies before you even join the band. This kind of iniation requires you to bring all of your groupies to a band practice/gig/afterparty so that you and your band can look like a bunch of high-rollers. The bare minimum being 3 groupies.

As long as you keep your groupies (Fanbase!!! got it again 🙂 then you can stay in the band. Just try not to get an STD.

5. The Dark Arts

I’ve never really been a band that had this kind of iniation but I figured I’d mention. The Dark Art iniation is one where you basically sell your soul to the Dark Lord in exchange for rock and roll talent. Rituals include: Drinking Blood, sacrificing something to Satan, or being a fan of Type O Negative. You must dye your hair black, look unusually pale and burn all your Norman Greenbaulm albums to the tune of Stairway to Heaven backwords while chanting 6-6-6 for this iniation to work properly.


Jam Session 2

This is just a little jam session I put together. I didn’t mix it down or anything, but I figured it was OK for a garage quality sound. Effects in this one are just distortion and wah really but it turned out pretty good. I’m thinking about doing some stuff with more reverb and maybe some phasers or compressors, and I might figure out a way to get Delay into some of my stuff. Delay is kind of tough though unless you got a band to play accompany guitar, it’s really more of a lead. I’m sure I’ll figure something out though.

For the video, I used Windows Movie maker, which is pretty easy to use and I like it because it’s free. I tried to add two effects to the video, but appeartly you can only do one, even if you mix the first vid, then apply the effect to the already worked movie. Pretty dissapointing, but what do you want for free right?!

I might get a trial of Vegas or some Muvee software for the next video, and I’ve been learning how to use the green screen, so I’m looking forward to more. It’s pretty fun. 🙂

Metal Sparrows

Metal Sparrows, the first guitar piece from LeftofDeth’s album Guitars on Fire.

“Basically, I just wanted a heavy sounding sound, something with a lot of grit with a cool introduction, so I made this song. Maybe I’ll use it with a drum or bass line in the future but I don’t really have any sort of “Specific” plans other than to just put this on the blog. I just think it’s cool, it’s kind of dark and has a lot of attitude but isn’t over the top and depressing. Just heavy, that’s what I was going for. ” ~ Jeremy Danger

Jam Session 1 From the Garage Album “Guitars on Fire”

This is my first attempt at mixing stuff for Left of Deth. I’m sure as time progresses I’ll get better at the whole thing but I just wanted to make something that would sound cool and have that Live feel to it. There’s actually quite a few different guitar tricks that I used here. Double stops and half-step chopping and some over-wah are just a few of the thingst that I wanted to incorporate into the song. One of these days, I AM going to figure out how to record my electric drums into the whole mix but that quest is far from over at this point.

Bands that Have influenced me The Most and Why

1. Faith No More– Because A. They got 3,000 people to my website because they kick ass. B. Because they rock so fucking hard. and C. They are Epic!

2. Jimi Hendrix– Because he was crazy on the Axe.

3. Clapton- Because he could play some mean blues.

4. All the Members of Black Sabbath, Past and Present-Because of their mystical story telling ability and kick ass guitar playing.

5. The Foo Fighters because they are still rocking good music today.

6. Iron Maiden– Extreme Technical Guitar Skills and great story telling ability.

7. Jimmy Page– Because he can play some mean guitar.

8. KISS& Alice Cooper– Because of their great stage prescence.

9. EVH– Because of his awesome guitar ability.

10. Sublime, Bush, The Beatles, Jack White, Primus, Hootie, because of their cool attitudes.

There’s lots more but that’s the Top Ten.