Preparing for a SOLO Music Gig in Maine - Part 4 Practice & Banter

Hey there, if you are following this then you know I'm a banjo/guitar kinda guy. I've, got a solo music gig at the 4Points Barbecue in Winterport that will run for 3 hours (3 sets), made a song list, put together three preliminary set lists, selected keys for each number and decided which song will be played on either the guitar or banjo.

… oh, and I almost forgot, I also created a poster … in photoshop to post on-line, print and put up in a few locations. More on the poster in another blog.

Hal's First Solo Music Poster for 4Points BBQ

… then it was time to practice the sets - in order - and get a feel for the flow of songs, combining one or more when possible for a strong musical flow, and thinking about the in-between banter. This also helped me to re-arrange numbers here and there, making sure there was a lot of variety for the listeners. And, at the same time it allowed me to determine which songs the audience might want to sing along with, and or what numbers I would ask folks (and especially NEVAH band members) to join me on-stage playing an instrument and singing which adds tremendously to a musical event. 

From my training as a theatrical prestidigitator I've learned, from numerous sources, that the best improve is generally rehearsed, to a certain degree. Therefore, when you are talking in-between songs, I feel its a good idea to know where you are going, or have an idea of what you want to say. However, it's also important to be able to listen to and watch your audience to gauge your response. Very tricky, and requires a lot of practice, a lot of performing. 

In looking at my songs I came up with a few "lines" to ease the flow from number to number and I chose which songs I'd like to ask certain band members to help me with … that is if they were going to be at the gig. Which they were … in full support and encouragement - terrific friends.

NEVAH Wanted Poster

So I rehearsed like crazy, which also strengthened my voice to be able to sing for three hours. Something I realized right away when I started practicing and thought I would lose or strain my voice. I practiced and thought about some in-between bits. Familiarized myself with my sets …

… and, to put a little more pressure on-myself I decided to write an original song about the venue.

NEXT: Part 5 - Practicing the instruments, refining my playing … and writing a song - just for the gig. +