I just got home from a cruise and spent some time visiting with the musicians on the ship. I asked them some questions that some of you may be interested in hearing.
The Ups and Downs Of Playing On A Cruise Ship- Part 2 | The Trumpet Blog
Playing On A Cruise Ship | The Trumpet Blog
Bb cornet: 2012 Getzen 3850 Custom (copper bell)
Bb trumpets: 1980 Bach Strad 37
Euphonium: Jupiter Capital Edition 460
Eastern Iowa Brass Band
"Practice, not procurement, is the secret." -- me
i spent a very long time on cruise ships/if you keep your head screwed on straight, make yourself a good listener, learn to be helpful and look after your mates, you have a chance at learning a lot in a short time. the job of playing is the least interesting most unimportant part of living with folks from all over the world in cramped quarters/the lines have worked hard to get rid of the more expensive staff, as the years went on i was one of the few americans-all in the bands or entertainment staff-on board. of 1100 crew, 17 were on u.s passports-and many of these were brits-canadian- aus-who had emigrated.
you will make friends for life, you will understand a lot of why we are so beloved and hated and thought strange everywhere else on the planet. you will have a chance to see how insulated and isolated america can be...you can begin to appreciate how blessed and lucky you are to live here
continuing the last post...culture shock is a great reason to cruise/
as a musician, you will have a 45 minute to 20 hour work week, depending on the acts and pre recorded shows. the musical part of the gig is cheese, pop, lowest common denominator schlock/the trumpety part can be a challenge, playing along to a click track recorded by rick baptist ain't that easy for beginners or even pretty good players/there will be many musicians to teach and learn from, ships are a great school, and you can find a locker (closet) deserted rope deck or dressing room to blow in pretty much any time. you will be able to wake up in a different country every few days, you can enjoy the magic of the sea-everchanging, endlessly beautiful, mesmerizing-that alone makes a tour well worth the aggravation of a drunken roomate or lame bandleader melt away. and thats the other half of cruising-it's a refuge for the ones who drink, who survive the day by being on time, presentable, quiet...and they stay forever, screwing the band up for years...but that is an education in survival too, and it's easier to learn on a gig that you don't mind walking off rather than one you really want to stay on but haven't learned how to handle yet...
cruising is another school, a year or two will teach you a lot about how small our world can be, how great peopl
cut out again/
how great people can be, and about you.
Check here a very good conversation about the ship gig scene. Just about to finish 7 1/2 months on a cruise ship - View topic: Trumpet Herald forum
Experience the Future
I went on a cruise this past summer, which was much fun. The one relevant observation I have is that much of the staff seemed to have alternate duties, except for maybe the headliners, IE guitar lounge singer also bus boy, DJ also cocktail pusher on deck, or bartender also arts and crafts entertainer. I think it is just a conservation of space issue. If I were in college, it would have been a blast to be on the crew, even if there were no shore leave, compared to other alternate low wage food service jobs.
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