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frigiliana
11-22-2016, 12:29 AM
Our group played a outdoor ukulele gig at weekend to turn the Christmas lights on in our village , it didn't go well we shared the PA equipment and weren't able to do our usual sound check , i couldn't feel my fingers (very cold )so all in all very disappointing but it has knocked my confidence just wondered if anybody else has had a similar experience and if you bounced back quick ?

Pete F
11-22-2016, 12:55 AM
I've not experienced what you describe, but then I probably wouldn't opt to play in front of a general audience. I think ukulele is really only appreciated by other uke players. The large group strumming sessions we have in the UK are great fun, but unless you play, I don't think the enjoyment and achievement translates to the general public. We still associate ukulele with comedy here in the UK - people normally burst out laughing when you mention that you play the uke - that's my experience and they've not even heard me play yet - can understand if they had of course! ;)
Sorry to be outspoken :) carry on playing with like minded people and enjoy what you do

DownUpDave
11-22-2016, 01:11 AM
I will respectfully but completely disagree with Pete F. I have been part of a couple large scale performances, one in a park and one in a waterfront band shell. Both were very warmly and enthusiastically received. Our uke group annually performs at a beer fest, other acoustic and electric acts are on the card and we never get laughed at. Maybe in England it is different but not here in Canada.

To answer your question yes I have tanked, yes it hurts. You just need to learn what lessons the "issues" provided and move on. We forget how many times we crashed and fell as children trying to learn how to ride a bike. We just kept picking ourselves up and getting back on.

Pirate Jim
11-22-2016, 01:12 AM
I once got a call from the drummer of the band I was in saying he'd landed us our biggest gig yet but it was that night. He wasn't wrong - it was in a decent rock club in a nearby city but I had literally just restrung my guitar so the new strings were very much still stretching and settling. I was going out of tune by halfway through each song and the review we had written up on us said something like "great singer/songwriter band let down by horribly out of tune guitar". That didn't do wonders for my confidence and I ended up getting a backup guitar so I'd always have one with settled strings just in case!

If you read interviews of huge superstar musicians even they have gigs where they just didn't feel it or feel it went well for whatever reason. It's all part and parcel of it - pick yourself up, dust yourself off and crack on! Make the next one in a suitably heated environment and I'm sure you'll feel much better after!

jimavery
11-22-2016, 01:40 AM
The important thing is to learn from any mistakes. :rolleyes:

Al Davison
11-22-2016, 01:46 AM
If you have played a few shows in your life then, it's highly likely that you've had a bad one. It happens.
One band I was in had our first good sized show and our lead guitarist broke a string early in the set. Nobody had a backup guitar.
We scrambled for 10 minutes trying to find a string. Then, it turns out that he had one of those weird guitars with a bridge that required an Allen wrench to change a string. Nobody had that wrench.
Our show was stopped for almost an hour! About half the crowd left but the other half stuck around and got drunker and drunker (as did a few members of our band). Finally, we were able to play again and it was just awful.
That band went on to play many more really great shows to large and enthusiastic crowds so, we were able to laugh it off later. And, we also made sure we had backup guitars on stage for everyone. ;)
You learn. You get over it. You go play great shows!

frigiliana
11-22-2016, 01:48 AM
Thanks for all the kind replies will use all your advise and as you say crack on , i've realised that i must have either bad circulation or something my hands were freezing and when i shook hands at the end gig everybody's hands seemed warm as toast , i can't play with these cut off mittens so i'm going to pass on the next outside gig if it's in winter .

Rllink
11-22-2016, 03:20 AM
I agree whole heartedly with DownUpDave. People love to listen to ukulele players. But yes, I've had some rough performances. It doesn't really shake my confidence though. I mean, I just tell myself that I learned a lot, and that I'll just be better next time because of it. You learn by experience. There is no benefit to letting it get you down, and for sure don't get a big complex over it. I always want to get back out there as quick as I can and redeem myself.

BluesPreacher
11-22-2016, 04:44 AM
Yea, in various situations and in various ways I've laid plenty of eggs in my music performance career (if one can call it that). Like was said above, it hurts. And it sucks. But I have to say I've probably learned more from my "egg laying" and mistakes than from anything else.

You showed up, you tried, and you met up with others who can encourage and support you. Win!

Uncle Rod Higuchi
11-22-2016, 08:08 AM
everything we do for others is a gift, and we don't always get the response we expect.

so don't let that stop you from giving to others. Some will appreciate it and we'll feel
good about that. Others will be ho-hum and we might get defensive or uncomfortable,
even sheepish :)

Again, don't let that stop you, especially if your next audience is totally different from
the last one. Moving from audience to audience means every performance is new and
different. If you were playing before the same people over and over... that's a horse
of another color :)

my 2 cents :)

keep uke'in',

acmespaceship
11-22-2016, 12:29 PM
The thing is, audiences want to enjoy the show. They are on your side. If you talk to anyone out there who attended, I bet you'll hear some disappointment they couldn't hear you because of the lousy PA. Maybe some sympathy about how hard it must be to play in the cold. Perhaps they are less than impressed with your musical talents. But there's nobody out there thinking "those rotten uke players have ruined my day, I sure do hate them now."

No matter how bad the show, they have all forgotten about it. Unless it was a true epic disaster, in which case wear it like a badge of honor and tell the story around campfires.

One thing to take from this: You can't play ukulele at outdoor events without a good sound system. The people running these things are used to rock bands and often have no idea what they're doing for a uke group. You have to stand up to them for the sake of the audience. I have threatened to cancel shows and walk away if there's no sound check, and miraculously enough the crew always seems to find a way to make a sound check happen.

We can land a man on the Moon and send a camera to Pluto but we can't get microphones to work. Plan accordingly.

kohanmike
11-22-2016, 08:07 PM
I've fumbled my way through a few performances, but I've come to place in myself that I shrug it off and just work at doing better the next time. I also find that the general public enjoys ukulele music. The group to which I belong, The CC Strummers, performers for audiences of 200-300 with over 50 uke players and we get great response.

PhilUSAFRet
11-23-2016, 01:24 AM
[QUOTE=DownUpDave;1913499]I will respectfully but completely disagree with Pete F. I have been part of a couple large scale performances, one in a park and one in a waterfront band shell. Both were very warmly and enthusiastically received. Our uke group annually performs at a beer fest, other acoustic and electric acts are on the card and we never get laughed at. Maybe in England it is different but not here in Canada.

Certainly wasn't true at the Ukulele Orchestra of Great Britain performance at our local center for the performing arts.

Rllink
11-23-2016, 05:06 AM
With a lot of things that I do, I prefer to be a participant and not a spectator. I think that just getting up in front of everyone and laying it on the line puts one above the crowd.

greenie44
11-23-2016, 05:59 AM
Although I have not done that many live uke gigs, I have done hundreds (maybe thousands) of presentations in front of fairly large audiences. Before each one I repeat this -

This presentation will probably fall somewhere between my best and worst. And, if not, it's a new story to tell.

That about covers it.

WestyShane
11-23-2016, 10:05 AM
I think that just getting up in front of everyone and laying it on the line puts one above the crowd.

Yeah, I agree. I've only recently gained the confidence and skill to feel comfortable playing in front of a couple friends standing around a campfire - and I haven't even had the opportunity to do THAT yet!

My hat is off to anyone who is comfortable enough to even step onto a stage in front strangers let alone perform as a virtuoso.

Tootler
11-23-2016, 10:50 AM
I've not experienced what you describe, but then I probably wouldn't opt to play in front of a general audience. I think ukulele is really only appreciated by other uke players. The large group strumming sessions we have in the UK are great fun, but unless you play, I don't think the enjoyment and achievement translates to the general public. We still associate ukulele with comedy here in the UK - people normally burst out laughing when you mention that you play the uke - that's my experience and they've not even heard me play yet - can understand if they had of course! ;)
Sorry to be outspoken :) carry on playing with like minded people and enjoy what you do

I live in the UK and that's not my experience. There's a local uke club that does regular gigs and has an enthusiastic following. I've seen them and they're pretty good. I play open mics regularly and my playing the ukulele is accepted. I don't get the "Do you play 'when I'm cleaning windows' request these days. There are a few others who play ukulele at the events I play at and while we're in a minority we don't get looked down on. On one occasion when I was on my way into the pub where a local folk club meets I was asked by two young lads coming out:

"Is that a ukulele"
"Yes"
"Cool"

I think that says that the ukulele is being more widely accepted here in the UK.

Nickie
11-24-2016, 03:30 PM
I agree whole heartedly with DownUpDave. People love to listen to ukulele players. But yes, I've had some rough performances. It doesn't really shake my confidence though. I mean, I just tell myself that I learned a lot, and that I'll just be better next time because of it. You learn by experience. There is no benefit to letting it get you down, and for sure don't get a big complex over it. I always want to get back out there as quick as I can and redeem myself.

Exactly!
My cluster f---- experiences onstage were mostly from those confounded battery charged pickups, taking the wind right out of my sails. Latley I've found that when I perform with my 2 cohorts, I'm almost fearless. No more battery pickups for me, and no more performing alone.