musical extortion
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Old 15-03-2017, 04:10 AM   #1
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musical extortion

Would love to get some thoughts on a situation I'm in at the moment.

So I have played music with my dear friend since we were kids. Played in a fairly successful band together in the late 90's to 2005. Then took a break from playing together outside of one of shows by the aforementioned band until forming an instrumental duo in 2011. We spent a couple years working on that and recorded a great record that we didn't put out. (yet).

In 2013 we both joined a Yacht Rock cover band with the idea that we could actually make a few bucks playing. It worked. That band went over really well and was a good earner. On big nights like new year's the band would make upwards of $12,000.00 for a gig. (unfortunately there were 7 people to split).

In 2016, the band leader abruptly pulled the plug on the whole thing due to his own personal issues. At the time I was upset because of the work put in and it finally paying off to some extent.

After some time, I realized it was a blessing. I've never been the type to play in a cover band. Way to much work, zero creativity. Thinking, thank fuck this is over. I can concentrate on doing something that really brings me some satisfaction.

I get the weird instrumental duo back together. We get our shit together for a show. It goes great.

Then I get this email from my long time musical partner trying to get the cover band back together for one show to end it proper.

For me, this is an absolute tonne of work. Relearning things, putting a rig together etc..

I'm the only person that says no. I'm actually just happy to be back being myself and creating....

So I get an email from my best friend/long time collaborator saying that my decision makes him not want to do our duo together or continue to play together.

I'm thinking huge WTF. I'm being extorted to participate in this BS for one show, or lose making the music that is making me happy. My thoughts are that it isn't ok.

AM I out to lunch here or does this whole ultimatum seem ridiculous?

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Old 15-03-2017, 04:24 AM   #2
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Re: musical extortion

It's hard to say. I don't mean to be rude, but we're only getting your side of the conversation. Without knowing both of you and hearing both sides of the story I'd have a hard time saying anything about the situation, as it's obviously a personal one.

I guess the question is why he feels like bowing out of the duo because of you not participating in the reunion. Does he need the money badly? Is he going to get kicked out of his house if he doesn't get the windfall? Does he feel like you're just being selfish in not wanting to play? Have you explained to him why it will be difficult for you to get everything together? That you're really focused on moving forward? This sounds like the kind of thing that often boils down to lack of or miscommunication. Does he feel like you participating in the reunion is equal to him participating in the duo? If that's the case then he doesn't sound very committed to making new music if he's only doing it as a favor to you.

In general I'd say yes, ultimatums are ridiculous and not something that normal, well adjusted people do to others. Lording over other people when just explaining the situation be sufficient isn't usually productive in the long term. If there's not more to the story and the guy's just being a dick then I'd say good riddance, you probably don't want to work with him anyway. If he does it now and you agree, who's to say he won't do it again?
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Old 15-03-2017, 04:41 AM   #3
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Re: musical extortion

No he doesn't need the money badly. It was some nice bonus cash but really we both have day jobs and the cash from that band was just some gravy. Perhaps he does feel like I'm being selfish in saying no. I've explained how the work to ready myself for it is just not worth it to me. Regarding the duo, I've always considered it our equal partnership, doing just what suits us. Hardly my vanity project. lol. That would be something else entirely. That's why I found this so shocking.

The cover band was super popular locally so maybe he's craving that scene. However that is totally not his character.

I'm not going to do the show. Was just pretty hurt by the response.
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Old 15-03-2017, 04:56 AM   #4
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Re: musical extortion

Yeah, it sounds like he's not as into the duo project as you thought. That's a crummy situation. I've certainly been there - people grow apart in their interests, try to keep it going for old times sake. It's never worked out for me. It mostly sucks that it seems to have put a real division in your friendship.

I think you're right not to do the show. If you're not interested and is going to take time, funds and effort away from what you want to be doing, there's not much left to say. It's a shame he can't see that and respect your decision.
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Old 15-03-2017, 05:09 AM   #5
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Re: musical extortion

Thanks.
Thing is I feel like I'd do it just for him. Which is super depressing to even say. Thinking about that, Just makes it all worse. Then what does that say about everything else we do musically? Not much.

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Old 15-03-2017, 05:51 AM   #6
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Re: musical extortion

I think that for whatever function you filled in that band, they could be giving a fresh new face a chance. My 2 cents.

You will have always contributed to those compositions, but another instrumentalist could be sharing the limelight.

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Old 15-03-2017, 05:52 AM   #7
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Re: musical extortion

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Originally Posted by PROton42 View Post
I think that for whatever function you filled in that band, they could be giving a fresh new face a chance. My 2 cents.
I think they are way too lazy for that. lol
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Old 15-03-2017, 05:53 AM   #8
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Re: musical extortion

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I think they are way too lazy for that. lol
Hey, I understand. I'm also a Canadian.

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Old 15-03-2017, 06:01 AM   #9
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Re: musical extortion

They only want to do one more show. This is all over one last horrah
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Old 15-03-2017, 09:06 AM   #10
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Re: musical extortion

Heh, so they can't get what they want from you and resort to blackmail. Not a good look.

Bow out gracefully, no need to do the gig but maybe thank them for the good memories and wish them the best. No need to lash out, even if their behaviour is disappointing.

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Old 15-03-2017, 06:25 PM   #11
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Re: musical extortion

you cant just drop everything to do what he wants
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Old 15-03-2017, 06:58 PM   #12
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Re: musical extortion

Quote:
Originally Posted by envelope3 View Post
Would love to get some thoughts on a situation I'm in at the moment.

So I have played music with my dear friend since we were kids. Played in a fairly successful band together in the late 90's to 2005. Then took a break from playing together outside of one of shows by the aforementioned band until forming an instrumental duo in 2011. We spent a couple years working on that and recorded a great record that we didn't put out. (yet).

In 2013 we both joined a Yacht Rock cover band with the idea that we could actually make a few bucks playing. It worked. That band went over really well and was a good earner. On big nights like new year's the band would make upwards of $12,000.00 for a gig. (unfortunately there were 7 people to split).

In 2016, the band leader abruptly pulled the plug on the whole thing due to his own personal issues. At the time I was upset because of the work put in and it finally paying off to some extent.

After some time, I realized it was a blessing. I've never been the type to play in a cover band. Way to much work, zero creativity. Thinking, thank fuck this is over. I can concentrate on doing something that really brings me some satisfaction.

I get the weird instrumental duo back together. We get our shit together for a show. It goes great.

Then I get this email from my long time musical partner trying to get the cover band back together for one show to end it proper.

For me, this is an absolute tonne of work. Relearning things, putting a rig together etc..

I'm the only person that says no. I'm actually just happy to be back being myself and creating....

So I get an email from my best friend/long time collaborator saying that my decision makes him not want to do our duo together or continue to play together.

I'm thinking huge WTF. I'm being extorted to participate in this BS for one show, or lose making the music that is making me happy. My thoughts are that it isn't ok.

AM I out to lunch here or does this whole ultimatum seem ridiculous?
Sounds a bit shitty to me.
Forget that guy, collab with someone else.
You don't need a best friend who gives you ultimatums like that.

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Giving it one hunder percent.
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Old 15-03-2017, 07:00 PM   #13
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Re: musical extortion

If you really want to piss him off, make sure you go to watch their last show.

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Old 15-03-2017, 11:00 PM   #14
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Re: musical extortion

Start another yacht rock cover band with all new members and start playing shows everywhere in the area. That'll teach em! (in a year or two)
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Old 16-03-2017, 02:01 AM   #15
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Re: musical extortion

Quote:
Originally Posted by Numerical View Post
Start another yacht rock cover band with all new members and start playing shows everywhere in the area. That'll teach em! (in a year or two)
Lol.
As much fun as I had in that band at the time. I can say I'll never play in a cover band again. It's not for me.

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Old 16-03-2017, 03:26 PM   #16
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Re: musical extortion

Challenge the other guy to a duel..

The recommended method is to approach him, square up, and slap him in the face with a glove.

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