On stage ... concentration,stress, meditation...

(10 posts)

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  1. chollus
    Member

    Hi guys i would like to know how about the way you deal with stress before stage, concentration on stage, your state of mind.... how you manage to be in the best situation to play a good music?????

    Magical rainbow ponies
  2. eSkills
    Member

    I find that trying to force anything creative out of myself really never works, if I instead try to just play what I am hearing and let it come to me - I will be much better off. At the moment I am playing standards at a nearby café/bar every other sunday, and it has happened more than once that I haven't really felt up to it. However when there is an audience I often naturally get kinda eager and nervous, and when I have managed to channel this energy to the right places - I have ended up playing pretty good considering the circumstances. Another danger with getting really psyched, is that you can sometimes end up really overplaying everything and kinda forget about important things like listening.

    The best tip I can give is probably just to be conscious about your mentality and how it affects your playing. Like with everything else, it's about practice and just getting used to those settings - by playing a lot.

    Also remember this: When playing improvised music it will NEVER "happen" every single time you play a gig. That's just a fact of life. Learn to accept this fact and try to have fun, that's what it should be about anyway.

  3. Basile865
    Member

    I think belief in the people you share the stage with and the material really helps. If you know you're up there with a strong team and you actually enjoy the material it all melts into place once you get going. That and tons of practice. Also built in sort've pre worked out melodies or hooks can be a safety zone if all else fails. Mostly its having a strong team and loving the material. If you love it it shows and works itself out once you start playing I think.

  4. JorgeRubiales
    Member

    I subscribe what Basile said. I think it's important not to have to worry if your equipment fails.

    In this topic, I wil NEVER play a song that's not done thousands of time rehearsing with the whole band, EVER. Every tune I'll play has to be internalized to the point I don't have to think about the tune. That leaves you a great deal of freedom to play.

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  5. chollus
    Member

    yeah guys i know what you mean...i like when i m on stage telling me it's a game, a funny game, i play, i try some stuff, i lost, i won but it must be something simple not a dramatic moment... and often less is more...
    my goal would be to be on stage like i am at home...

  6. eSkills
    Member

    Jorge: Are you a a professional touring musician? Because if you can find time to internalize every tune you play to the degree you'r describing here, I very much admire your practice regiment!

    PS: I'm not trying to be a smartass or anything, just interested in how you can make this approach work in the life of a working musician.

  7. Sandemose
    Member

    I remember starting a similar thread on the old forum, like 5 years ago or so about being nervous on stage. I remember Kurt writing that he never listens to the announcer (or what its called) just before he gets on stage, and that his best advice was like, start looking at people or something in the room for a moment. Also, look at your friends you share stage with. I really liked those advices...

    Best, Sandemose

  8. JorgeRubiales
    Member

    Hi eSkills, no I'm not a professional touring musician, but I study two degrees in conservatory in this moment, and have another one in Music Education, so I guess I'm kind of semi-pro lol.

    Well, reading my post again, I might have put it too strong, but I believe firmly in not putting a show "to the extreme" (songs that haven't been rehearsed well, or that you know someone in the band has a serious problem "getting it"...). I don't tour outside my city, but I really want to make my gigs the best possible show.

    And, on topic, I think a similar approach helps tremendously with stage fright. I'm a VERY stressfull and vervous guy, but when I play something I know head to toes, I don't care if there is no one seeing me, or a thousand people (well, maybe people with guns would put me nervous, you never know what would happen if they don't like your solo lol).

  9. silverwater
    Member

    @ Sandemouse:

    Funny you mentioned bit about Kurt saying he doesn't listen to the announcer. I remember seeing him at the Regatta Bar in Boston and getting a little ticked when the announcer pronounced his "RAWsenwinkel"...

  10. silverwater
    Member

    Anyways, more to the point of the topic of the thread, probably the best thing for stage fright is to spend as much time as possible in front of an audience. I can remember both hands literally shaking on stage when I was at college, but it got easier by the time I graduated. But that kind of performing was actually so much more nerve-racking than anything I've done since. At school recital halls, you're on a stage with everyone quiet and looking and listening to your every movement and sound, while most professional playing (for your average professional) is in clubs/bars/restaurants, where people aren't always paying attention to everything you do. That helps to loosen you up.

    I don't know if you're a student or not Chollus, but if you are, let me just say that it's no big deal to be nervous at student performances. Also, you should do some open mic/open jam sessions. I'm always nervous as hell at those things, but that kind of thing only makes other gigs less intense.

    There are also some breathing exercises you can do to calm your mind. And drinking a beer works for a lot of people.


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