Skipping Jams

Jerryc41

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I find myself accepting almost any excuse I can come up with for skipping local jams. One is seven miles away and runs for two hours. The other is thirty miles away and runs for ninety minutes, and it's more enjoyable.

For some reason, I get the idea in my head to stay home, and I don't regret my decision a day or two later. Some days, I'm enthused about going, and I enjoy it, but today, I decided to stay home. It's not that I'm complaining about the jams. I just decide to stay home. Am I alone in this?
 
I go to one largely because my friend runs some of the sessions and we can catch up. Otherwise, what they do is not what I do when playing ukulele. Ours is two hours long, which is too long, especially since they find the need to pack in as many songs as possible.

So you are not alone. Go if you want and don't if you choose not to. Either choice is okay.
 
You are not alone.

I have to drive 60-90 minutes, one way, to attend a jam. Nothing local.

Gets old after a few trips and costs money with fuel and tolls.
 
When we had an active club, and when I attended, it was half playing and half socializing. After a couple of years, and after I found another uker at my level, I gradually stopped attending the club sessions. They were fun, though, and I think fondly back at those times.
 
I go to one largely because my friend runs some of the sessions and we can catch up. Otherwise, what they do is not what I do when playing ukulele. Ours is two hours long, which is too long, especially since they find the need to pack in as many songs as possible.

So you are not alone. Go if you want and don't if you choose not to. Either choice is okay.
Thanks! The longer group tends to play every song (from the Yellow book) two or three times. It's not we're rehearsing for a performance.
 
I go for the socializing. Getting out of the house. And my playing is at a level that I need to play with others to hone my skills and remember how to play with others. I always leave feeling good.

The club has lost a lot of people. Not just from COVID and age. The good players got tired of playing the same songs over and over. Open mic nights let them show off their skills. But many of them perform in groups and the club just didn't give them what they need.

Yes, I too have skipped jams. But when I go back I realize that I missed the camaraderie and interaction with my friends and fellow ukers.

Make an effort to add a new song every meeting, or try songs that have parts. with a few people play one and others a different on and it all combines to a whole. Fun songs and classics. Keep it fresh. People resist change. So keep familiar songs. Whatever motivates and keeps people making the effort to return.

PS: I like grape jelly with my Chunky Skippy. Jams are a little too much for my sandwich.
 
My wife LOVES to go and enjoys it immensely. I find the hour drive and two hours strumming in time with everyone else tedious and no fun. I've played in bands for many many years so its not that it's just I want to play the way I enjoy playing with a little swag and not so structured.

Just my 2 cents...
 
I'm an introvert so when the infrequent jam I attend comes around there's a part of me that wants to go and another part of me that would welcome an excuse not to go. (Like most social opportunities for me.) Were it not for my wife who goes mainly for the social interaction I would probably skip more but I enjoy myself when I do go and they usually last 1-1/2 to 2 hours. We've never played out of The Daily Ukulele and repetition of songs is rare, we bring new songs each time we meet. We get a pretty good variety of music but it's frustrating when people bring stuff they printed out in the last second without having tried to play it and it's not until the group tries to play it that we find out it just doesn't work. I'm not a fan of the music that about 1/2 to 3/4 of the people bring and I'd imagine that the reception is probably about the same for stuff I bring but at least what I bring has been tested, works well and is fun to sing, play or both. I just discovered a weekly jam that is closer to me than the one I have been attending and I may check that out. I think it would be ideal if I could find 1-3 others who were like minded music-wise and skill-wise to get together to play with.
 
I'm an introvert so when the infrequent jam I attend comes around there's a part of me that wants to go and another part of me that would welcome an excuse not to go. (Like most social opportunities for me.) Were it not for my wife who goes mainly for the social interaction I would probably skip more but I enjoy myself when I do go and they usually last 1-1/2 to 2 hours. We've never played out of The Daily Ukulele and repetition of songs is rare, we bring new songs each time we meet. We get a pretty good variety of music but it's frustrating when people bring stuff they printed out in the last second without having tried to play it and it's not until the group tries to play it that we find out it just doesn't work. I'm not a fan of the music that about 1/2 to 3/4 of the people bring and I'd imagine that the reception is probably about the same for stuff I bring but at least what I bring has been tested, works well and is fun to sing, play or both. I just discovered a weekly jam that is closer to me than the one I have been attending and I may check that out. I think it would be ideal if I could find 1-3 others who were like minded music-wise and skill-wise to get together to play with.
One group goes around the table with each one picking a song from one of Jim Beloff's books. I could do without that. I've always been afraid that someone would say, "Oh, I don't want to play that one. Let's play this, instead." Silly, right? Well, it actually happened to me. In seven years attending jams with two groups, that's the only time that has happened, and it happened to me. 🙄
 
When I do go, I prefer playing to talking, whether it's socializing or arguing over how long a rest in a song should be.
 
When I do go, I prefer playing to talking, whether it's socializing or arguing over how long a rest in a song should be.
I agree 100%. The last thing I want to do at a jam is debate the arrangement. Let the one who leads the song do it their way and just go with it. If you feel that strongly about it, you can lead the next one.
 
I don’t do “jams” but I do have band practice, and maybe a gig every week.
We love hanging out with each other and call ourselves the “bandfam”.
We all will be getting together tonight to watch the “super bowl “…89495CEF-089A-4A39-8DB7-2816D54FC8DC.jpeg
 
One group goes around the table with each one picking a song from one of Jim Beloff's books. I could do without that. I've always been afraid that someone would say, "Oh, I don't want to play that one. Let's play this, instead." Silly, right? Well, it actually happened to me. In seven years attending jams with two groups, that's the only time that has happened, and it happened to me. 🙄
I'm surprised that someone would do that but thankfully it only happened the one time. Usually the best rule of thumb with a group of gathered people like this is to go along to get along. In our group, a certain person always seems to bring current pop songs and 95%+ of the time I don't know them and would never choose to sing them on my own. Early on I would mention to my wife that I didn't know the song but after a while I stopped saying it out loud when I realized that it might be interpreted as negative or disapproving. Another person seems to like bringing obscure songs which no one else knows so when they lead the song, they are the only one singing. That might be all right if the song was cool or fun to play but more often than not it isn't. Another person is capable of singing because I've heard them but that doesn't seem to extend to when they lead a song. When they lead a song they often sing and/or play it wrong and it kind of drives me nuts but thankfully the group just goes with it and says nothing so we've never had debates on how something should be played. I'm sure not everyone likes what I bring to the table but I always keep the group in mind and pick something that is fun to sing and play even if they may not like it. It always feels good when you get a genuine positive reaction to a song knowing that they will probably start singing and playing that song on their own at home.
 
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I'm an introvert too. Last jam and Irish session I went to was the week prior to the pandemic lock down. I've been thinking about going to one, but stuff just seems to get in the way........
 
I've found that each jam/session has its own protocol that may or may not suite you. I started a session that plays the same songs just about every time. This was to get away from the "one and done" that kept some of the incorrect or wrong key for us to sing song sheets. Also to improve sharing, soloing, and approach. I've found that in small groups you can hear individuals playing. If it is a large group, I like a food/social break to get to know new people and old friends.
ALERT! on 02/29/2024 we will play totally new songs that we will revisit 02/29/2028.
 
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I don’t do “jams” but I do have band practice, and maybe a gig every week.
We love hanging out with each other and call ourselves the “bandfam”.
We all will be getting together tonight to watch the “super bowl “…View attachment 166132
That looks like a really cool bunch of people. Lucky you!
 
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