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BHO's TOP 40 TIPS- PERFORMING ON STAGE

Posted by Dock Jekel on Saturday, June 13, 2009

1.    Be organized and rehearsed.
2.    Don't stop when you make a mistake, keep playing.
3.    NEVER talk about mistakes, or put yourselves down, NEVER.
4.    Have fun and include humor. If band members are laughing, the audience will too.
5.    "...leave 'em laughing, when you go..." --Joanie Mitchell
6.    If someone has to retune, or if the show stops, have a MINIMAL patter ready.
7.    Never argue with band-mates on-stage.
8.    Entertain the audience- make it fun for them too. 
9.    Keep the audience's attention focused on the stage. YOU are the show!
10. Between song lectures are boring- keep the show moving.
11. Try to involve the audience in the show-often this involves the audience's moving.
12. Start off with a song you know well, to make a good first impression and to get comfortable.
13. I would say End your show with your best upbeat piece.
14. Don't play two too serious or somber pieces in a row.
15. As much eye contact with the audience as possible, please.
16. Never play a lead part when someone else is singing.
17. The vocals are the most important part of a show.  
18. Some say, never wear a watch on stage. You look bored if you're wondering what time it is.
19. Stand if possible: your best singing comes when your diaphragm is free to move.
20. Be comfortable.
21. Make sure all the microphones are set at proper volumes; feedback KILLS a show.
22. Be careful what you say before a live mic-you'll be sharing! 
23. Check your instruments before you go onstage. Repairs and adjustments are b-o-r-i-n-gggg. 
24. Appearances help a lot. Costumes can help, especially for big money shows.
25. Accessories on one or two band members can accentuate a theme and add to the glamour.
26. A polished, good-looking instrument impresses folks, and makes the show special.
27. Show biz is about being special.
28. Sometimes NOT being special is what the show is about.
29. Have dress rehearsals: work it out before the day of the show.
30. Always start on time.
31. Check with the show organizers about time limits, and about encores.
32. Do take a bow, and say "Good night" or whatever is appropriate.
33. Do a post-show briefing with band mates at some point.
34. Have business cards on hand to pass out
35. Interact during songs...oh, nice lick....wow....you been practicing! We chatter a lot, interrupt each other, make jokes, some of which are sort of scripted etc.
36. Remember funny lines, practice them, and use them....but don't tell them to your band-mates beforehand. Let them also be surprised.
37. I find I perform with less energy when I'm sitting, although I can control the instrument better.
38. Involve the audience. Find someone in the audience and point them- example “she knows what I am talking about!
39. Remember that it ain't about the music; it's about being entertained. The people pay their money to see a show, not hear music. They can strap on their iPod for that.
40. Half the people in the audience aren't there for you, they are there to be with the person who wants to hear you. Play for them. --- John McEuen
 
SPECIAL THANKS to BHO members Dan Sparkman and Darryl K for their large contributions!



1 comment on “BHO's TOP 40 TIPS- PERFORMING ON STAGE”

frailin Says:
Sunday, June 14, 2009 @5:30:11 AM

Wow.  Typical of John McEuen, this is amazingly accurate and well-delivered.  Thanks for reposting this, Dock.

 

Craig

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