» «

how to kill your band

On September 24th covering , ,

I’ve noticed there are a lot of ways to destroy a band. I thought it would be helpful to compile a list of different ways to make a band fail, so people who are seeking failure can destroy their bands more efficiently. This is a first pass at an authoritative reference. Please add your own as a comment.

  1. Don’t talk about what you really want to accomplish. This way everyone can assume their goals are the only goals and they can rage at how stupid everyone else is for doing things that serve different goals.
  2. Get in a band with people you don’t actually like or respect, but who have something you need.
  3. Don’t let anyone make any decisions without everyone agreeing.
  4. When there are problems, just hope they’ll go away.
  5. Wait until you are making some real money — THEN talk about how it should be divided.
  6. Tell everyone the band is an egalitarian democracy, with everyone getting an equal say in things — never mind the band was really formed by two people who expect everyone to respect that it’s really “their” band.
  7. Pretend you don’t care about money, but expect to have total time, freedom and equipment to make art.
  8. Expect people to be totally committed to a band that they don’t have any ownership in.
  9. Haze the new guy.
  10. Sneer at people who have experience & knowledge you don’t have.
  11. Come to business meetings drunk/high.
  12. Act like the things you do are the important part and crap all over the people who do other things. If you line up the gigs, act like everyone is working for you. If someone else lines up the gigs, accuse them of being a suit. And so forth.
  13. You are a natural-born artist, so improving your musical chops and studying with an experienced teacher is beneath you.
  14. Never thank people who help you.
  15. If someone takes on responsibility within your band, go on a paranoid rampage about them being power-hungry.
  16. Listening to other artists and styles shows you’re not committed to your kind of music.
  17. Being considerate is for losers.
  18. Rehearsing is for hacks. Rehearsals are for playing through everything straight-through like it’s a performance.
  19. Never ask for help.
  20. Don’t bring up disagreements at band meetings. Fume about them and then later talk to the one or two people who agree with you, or better yet your romantic partner.
  21. Don’t take responsibility, but gripe about the transportation/ venues / hotels/ food/ audience/ studio etc.
  22. Explode when someone offers constructive criticism.
  23. Offer phony “constructive criticism” that is really just an attack on someone you are afraid is better than you or someone who you happen to be annoyed with at the moment.
  24. Nothing is your fault.
  25. They can fix it in post-production. Whatever it is.
  26. Only listen to people who think you’re great.
  27. Any idea that’s not yours sucks.
  28. Never give anybody a second chance.
  29. Humiliate people whenever you get the chance.
  30. Anybody who makes more money than you is a sellout. Anybody who makes less money than you is a loser.
  31. …. (to be continued)

3 Responses

Subscribe to the comments RSS feed of this post Comments feed

J Johnson

Sep 26 at 2:24


31. Let someone in your band out of sympathy because they’re your friend, but a horrible guitar player, and not have the heart to tell them they SUCK because they’re so excited and in complete denial of their incompetence.

32. Turn your amp up to drown out the other players, and refuse to turn it down.

33. Not stop playing loudly for a single fucking second when other members are trying to discuss things or tune their instruments.

34. Not tell the other members your true feelings about their riff, so they constantly play it.


Sep 26 at 9:22


Don’t use new technology like youtube, myspace, and facebook. You know who your fans are and they know know when your shows are.


Sep 26 at 9:24


36. Favor the old guy who is never around over the new guy who actually has talent and brings people to your shows.

Leave a Reply

Formatting: You can use these tags: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong> .