SMBs top musician

mickb2112

Striker
I know we have quite a few talented people on here but who has come closest to the 'big time' (or even got there). Has anyone ever played on a chart record? Played in front of 2000 people?

I played with Prefab Sprout a couple of times in their early days but it was just helping out in rehearsals and I was never good enough to be any more involved (I think they were mainly after my amp😁).
Does playing at the Royal Albert Hall with the school brass band count or cutting an album with the producer of Prefab Sprout, Spartan Warrior, Mythra & the Toy Dolls? 😎 :D
There's a guy who used to frequent the board who was the guitarist for a group that were pretty big on the pop scene iirc. Can't remember the name of the band. I think they were kind of folky and possibly named after the female lead singer.

As for my meagre claims to fame...

I edited the hi-hat parts on the "England Win The World Cup" version of "Is This The Way To Amarillo".

I co-wrote a few electronic tracks with the assistant engineer to producer Youth (formerly of Killing Joke) with a guy called Brother Culture on vocals who was pretty big on the reggae scene.

I once wrote a song while living in Keith Flint's house, and one of my housemates - Harry Collier from the band Kubb - liked the song and offered to play bass on it, which he then did.

I was the recording engineer on a couple of rehearsal sessions for TV show Just The Two Of Us featuring Marti Pellow and some soap actress or something. (Producing a CD for them to take home and practice to for the proper TV show performance). He bought me a £50 bottle of whiskey for coming in to work on my days off. Nice feller!

I was once paid £360 to be a session guitarist for a single hour-and-a-half gig for a fairly in-demand club house/soul covers band. I later did a gig with their "sister band" (most of the same backing group, different lead singer) in front of about 10,000 people at an outdoor festival. Shite money for the latter one in comparison, but what an experience!

Once while working for EMI as a techie, one of the Absolute brothers who did a load of pop stuff for people like the Spice Girls, came into the maintenance room and asked me if I was "in practice" on guitar. (I often played guitar in there to test gear I was fixing, and he'd obviously heard me playing and knew I was pretty handy :) ) I said "so-so, depends what you need.... I could probably pull off Clapton standard but maybe not Steve Vai right now...". He then said "ah doesn't matter" and left. I sometimes kick myself for not just saying "YES!" and wonder what might have come from it.
Oh no.....you should have just said yes and winged it. I feel your pain.
Agree with you and Harry.People on the other side of music,the engineers ,the 100 notes a second guitarists ,the nearly bands try to put some kind of fact behind it but some tunes just have that something else .
If you scatted Wonderwall the melody and shape of it is telling you its got that something ,then even average lyrics will finish it off.As it happens the lyrics on that are half decent .
I Like my music as odd and different as it gets but you still have to hold your hands up to some well crafted pop music .
Totally agree. Some of the greatest music ever, are simple Pop songs. One of my favourite bands, KISS, are not technically great and they`ll admit this themselves but they can`t half knock out a canny tune with a big hook and put on a cracking, entertaining show.
No chance mate. We would never expect it either. We're at the point where we are fully booked over a year in advance now and starting to play the really big events so that is what success looks like to us.

We would have to make some changes to make the leap to ticketed events, which is the next step up and would mean we would be a touring band, which we can't do with the other lads having young kids.
At least your playing music, doing something that you love. That`s success in my book.
Highlights for me:

Having our song on the film "The Tournament" with Roberty Carlyle / Ving Rhames and listed on the IMDB listing: The Tournament (2009) - IMDb

Having a CD released and available in HMV (definitely a bucket list moment for me)

Being played on Bruce Dickinson's BBC Radio Rock Show and him saying "we're destined for bigger things", which was nice of him.

Playing the O2 Academy in Newcastle quite often supporting touring bands, and filling venues like Trillians and The Cluny ourselves.

Playing one of the Evolution festivals on Newcastle Quayside, roughly around 2005 which was a brilliant experience.

Going on small tours, my bands always had great local support but not as much elsewhere (these bands were mainly from pre-social media/youtube) so harder to spread the word but made some friends for life in other bands we were touring with.

One band in particular came close on a few occaisons to getting signed and had some major labels sniffing around for a few years, we'd play quite a few A&R events and showcases, we were always told we had the songs for a great album and go away and write a killer break through single but as hard as we tried it was unsuccessful and the band collapsed.

I have some great stories and memories but just wish I made it, even if only for a few years but other bands always seemed to make it instead of us. Recently got back in a covers band, playing for the first time in 10 years and absolutely loving it.
What`s your band called??
 
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Kent_Mackem

Striker
I can strum out a few chords on a guitar. I’d soon get the nickname The Chord Butcher though. So I tend just just play it when alone.

Got to Grade 5 on piano as a kid before giving it up. I can still sight read simple things like Christmas Carols but I never get time to practise.
 

mux

Striker
I can strum out a few chords on a guitar. I’d soon get the nickname The Chord Butcher though. So I tend just just play it when alone.

Got to Grade 5 on piano as a kid before giving it up. I can still sight read simple things like Christmas Carols but I never get time to practise.
Get back into it KM. With things like piano you will be amazed how quickly your hands remember. I was level 7 (just on keyboard) when I was 11 years old and stopped playing for 25 years until last year. I'm flying again now. Its only keyboard like so not as complicated as piano but the point remains, you pick the skill back up so fast.
 

JohnKay

Winger
Sure if you do a quick Google, you’ll find the details. Strange little fella. Dab hand on those decks though.
Had a google and feel like a right twat now like, hadn't heard anything about this so a bit shocked but disgusted at the same time. Dirty bastard.
Sorry for even asking if you could be him marra, it was the few tunes released that got me thinking.
 

Gelan

Winger
Get back into it KM. With things like piano you will be amazed how quickly your hands remember. I was level 7 (just on keyboard) when I was 11 years old and stopped playing for 25 years until last year. I'm flying again now. Its only keyboard like so not as complicated as piano but the point remains, you pick the skill back up so fast.
Just to add that I learnt piano from virtual scratch through lockdown...I can't read music either, don't know what grade I am as I'm probably not using the right fingers, but I'm confident enough to play live...you're never too old to make music.

I play a lot of instruments badly...does that count? :eek:
 
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mux

Striker
Just to add that I learnt piano from virtual scratch through lockdown...I can't read music either, don't know what grade I am as I'm probably not using the right fingers, but I'm confident enough to play live...you're never too old to make music.

I play a lot of instruments badly...does that count? :eek:
It makes you a master musician Gelly lad :)
 

FatCat2402

Goalkeeper
Just to add that I learnt piano from virtual scratch through lockdown...I can't read music either, don't know what grade I am as I'm probably not using the right fingers, but I'm confident enough to play live...you're never too old to make music.

I play a lot of instruments badly...does that count? :eek:

I'm the same. I'm a decent Euphonium and Tuba player, but I just make it up on guitar, bass, banjo, piano etc

I've played at the Albert hall, Royal Festival Hall, Sage....blagged to get on stage with Neil Finn, Newcastle City Hall, Liberty Island, Fanueil hall in Boston, MASS and loads of other places, but I'm just fortunate that whilst not being brilliant I've been with bands and orchestras that have very good.

I have a lovely home recording studio in my spare room, which is so self indulgent, but great fun
 

Darlo1973

Striker
This is why you may understand the technicalities of music but don't hear the music because anyone who doesn't even rate Oasis (that includes me) can hear that it has that little spark or fairy dust that takes it way way above the run of the mill song.

Amy Macdonald This is the Life is a nice simple upbeat folky pop song but just has something that very few people attain. No idea if she has any other decent tunes but the song isn't that complicated but it hits the spot. I'll do my research she's on at Kendal Calling.

Hope you she enjoyed your research. I'm a big fan of Amy Macdonald. One of those artists who is bigger in Europe (especially Germany/Austria) than she is in the UK
 

RedOrDead

Goalkeeper
No chance mate. We would never expect it either. We're at the point where we are fully booked over a year in advance now and starting to play the really big events so that is what success looks like to us.

We would have to make some changes to make the leap to ticketed events, which is the next step up and would mean we would be a touring band, which we can't do with the other lads having young kids.
What’s A & R?
 

RedOrDead

Goalkeeper
I’m in awe of musicians. It’s an incredible skill going back to the date dot. How people create original music is beyond my imagination. Or even how people who do covers remember the words and notes of dozens of songs.
 

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