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Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by john7401, Jun 16, 2010.
Wait, you gotta be good?
Nah. You just gotta know people.
This is not strictly true. It is when you get paid 'reasonable' money. If not, you are just undercutting someone who is trying to make a living. I have never busked. I play for reasonable money or for no money at all. It's just the code I've lived by in the industry.
Flugelgirl, would you reconsider, if you were the headliner soloist that all came to hear ? Especially so, if you were backed up by such as Andre Reiu's orchestra (but even then all the female members of the orchestra wear gowns) and IMO look great. After all, it's just stage wardrobe! Even if I were to wear tux tails on stage, it's most unlikely I'd leave the venue wearing the same.
Still, I've taken my wife out quite a few times, and worn a tux with black or white jacket, the last time when she wore a fancy fancy pants suit.
Well those days I had more than a dollar in my pocket, unlike now when I count my coins to see if they total such.
If you blow bubbles, you can wear anything!!! (or nothing)
Aahhh - now we're talking about different worlds entirely! I've spent my career on the Jazz and Commercial side of the house, and in the Military. One of the easiest things about the Navy is they tell you what to wear for the gig. In the Jazz and Commercial world, even as a featured soloist it's been a good -looking suit, maybe with a skirt. I've found that there are plenty of times where, if I want to be taken a little more seriously as a professional I have to be sure to dress like one, as well as stick a little closer to what the guys are wearing. I also have to be very concious of how many tattoos I can show for a specific gig!
I think that in part it depends on which direction you want to go with it - if you want to be a military bandsman, you have to be solid, but you don't have to be fantastic.
Otherwise, it's really a thing where you notice you are consistently better than most, if not all, of the other trumpet players in your circle, even when your circumstances upgrade that circle. That stopped for me when I hit the military band program and came crashing into the reality that I was a decent player, but didn't have the capacity to rise to the level necessary to be competitive for true, audition-only gigs.
As I see it, it's an ability to marry 3 or 4 things:
1.) It never hurts to have a solid pedigree listed on your resume of where you went to college and who you studied with
2.) You have to be able to play - that's kind of a given
3.) You have to be a solid person - you have to be reliable and you can't be an arrogant jerk.
4.) You have to get to where you know some people who can provide the right kinds of opportunities
There is also a bit of luck too. I'm not a great player - never have been, never will be - but I can always manage to find paid work for myself. I've never really had an issue either getting or keeping a gig. Part of it is that I knew people who opened up some opportunities, and the other part is that I'm not a flake. Most band leaders would rather have a solid player who is reliable than an absolutely dynamite player who is a flake.
Oh, OK you had me worried there.
Just a thought, but it's strange how much this seems to matter sometimes. There have been times when the folks I've played with could have cared less where I studied (and some people assumed I had studied with someone of note) and at other times, doors were completely closed due to an assumption that because I hadn't studied with a collegiate level teacher then I couldn't possible be a solid enough player.
Been there ... done that (USAF) where they tell you what to wear for every task you'll be assigned to. Likewise, had a career otherwise that was at times in the sharpest uniform I could present, and at other times with the appearance of a homeless vagrant or whatever between the two.
Now, if I were playing, and along with others, I too would dress in a manner that blended, and to that when I would solo sounding TAPS I would also dress in a manner as would blend in appearance to the mourners who attend.
It would be hypothetical, but if I were to play a solo on the stage at the recent Farmer's Festival I attended, while one might suppose I'd wear a crumpled and worn John Deere ball cap as other performer's did, I'm not known in the area to wear such nor am I a farmer, so I'd wear just pretty much as I'm wearing this moment only adding that I'd put on a pair of socks and shoes.
Still, I see your point as to the genre you play, which I'll also presume the type of venue where you more often play such. Commercial wise, you'd commit a big faux pas to wear a gown while playing at a wedding, but I've seen a female wear a white tux jacket somewhat as tailored to a Navy uniform and a black skirt with it. I think now you would accept such dress code in such a scenario, especially when the bucks you would earn were sufficient to include a "clothing allowance".