I'm Tony Miceli, and I'm a vibe player in Philadelphia, Pa. I play, teach and I run

Tuesday, October 11, 2005

Pompous ASS

Is that what I am? somebody complained on one of my earlier blogs and pretty much told me to shut up because i was whining about a club that treated musicians pretty poorly and because of people who had no clue as to what we were doing there.

Let's take a scenario, there's a band playing. They're really into it. They've written some great original stuff. Odd time meters, interesting changes. They're solos show how connected they are too each other. It's smokin. They're swinging, whatever. They get done playing and they feel really good about what they've just done and someone comes up to them and says "HEY YOU GUYS KNOW 'BAD BAD LEROY BROWN'". If those guys thought that person was a total asshole would they be pompous? If they wanted to strangle that person would they be elitist? Should they just play the tune and be happy someone has requested something.

OK this is an extreme and this is not what happened on the gig i was on. AND YES I PLAY IN A JAZZ band that does rock tunes. But it's different.

I remember playing Icarus (Ralph Towner) with a guitarist Steve Giordano. I thought we played a great version. Steve is a great guitarist. When we were done the owner came over and asked "Is that a medley?" Steve said "No". Club Owner said "That's all one song". Steve said yes. Club owner said "You guys can leave.". We laugh now, but that owner thought we were HORRIBLE. Were we horrible we wondered? Maybe we really suck and can't play. Maybe or music sounds bad.

I believe people like what they like and don't like what they don't like. Nothing you can do about that, it's nobodies fault, no one is to blame. Nothing personal. It is though very frustrating when you're thrown into a situation like that. When all you do is practice at your instrument for hours and hours and years and years and you feel you're at least at a certain level and nobody gets it.

I'm pretty much a nobody but I bust my ass and practice like many of the musicians that come to this site do. How many of the great musicians on this site that have to go out and do weddings come home after the gig and go 'wow, that was a great version of feelings!'. Or man those people were dancing there butts off, I felt so good playing New York New York for them. Or how about 'yeah that drummers a plummer full time, and yeah he rushes and drops beats, doesn't know forms of tunes, but we made some heavy music at that barmitzvah. ORRR 'when that lady was coming up to the band stand I was just praying she'd ask us to play 'Hot Hot Hot' and better than that she asked for a Lionel Richie medley. Man that's the shit!!!' Or 'that band leader is right, I should be a little less creative'.

Sooooo I walked into this restaraunt a few weeks ago and it was beautiful and i thought cool, we'll play nice music people will hang out and listen, we'll eat some great italian food, the vibes will sound great in here. Well they triple booked, double booked, shorted me money, asked me 'if that's all i play'. And then they charged me for a soda! I know, I shouldn't do the gig, yeah yeah yeah.

Played with a piano /singer who has a beautiful voice and realized nobody gave a shit.

Now I'm wondering if I'm being pompous. Maybe I am. But there's a couple problems. I need the money, I like playing with the piano player, I need the money.

So I guess I go shut up and put up. Which I pretty much did for the most part. I never complained on the gig and when the owner shorted me money, I just split. No scene.

So most musicians wouldn't wine to other musicians? They'd find the 'good' in it?

would I do the gig again? Let me look at my November......... YEP.



  • At 9:05 AM, Blogger evildixie said…

    you would do that gig again?

  • At 9:20 AM, Blogger Tony said…

    I gotta make a living. What the hell am I going to do. If work was slow I'd go back anywhere. Fortunately I filled my Fridays with a gig where the establisment is exactly the opposite of the other one!!! We'll see how long that lasts!

  • At 2:36 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    what are you doing up at 6 am

  • At 2:44 AM, Anonymous flower said…

    here's an unrelated but funny musician scenario: musicians are like flowers, they need someone to care for them because they are very sensitive and consumed with practicing.
    I tried to cook the other night because I felt like my boyfriend was working hard and he could use a break from cooking. So i found some bisquets and some hotdogs and thought I'd make pigs in a blanket (I normally would not make or eat that shit but what the hell it just presented itself). Anyway after I squished the bisquets on a round baking tray and sliced up the dogs and squished the dough around the dog, i put it in the oven and started to practice the piano. I smelled smoke and ran to the oven. To my chagrin, of course everything was burnt and that's why I don't cook.
    Does anyone agree with my theory that musicians are flowers in essence, and need a gardner type to care for them? Or can two musicians make a good couple?

  • At 8:23 AM, Blogger Tony said…

    i think it's better if one person is a musician and the other is stable. but then those kinds of setups don't work either, because then the stable person flips out over the musician and his lifestyle.

    because of the nature of the business it's just rough to hook up with someone.


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