October 10 -Enter Yoko
The band has their usual practice. Due to a week filled with activity, the songs that were slotted to be learned for the practice have not been learned by the members. This will probably be the last time they practice in John’s basement, so Dave decides to record the session. They go over the list. They brush up a few loose ends. Possibly due to the tape recorder running, the band does not sound as good as past sessions. In the middle of the practice, the band cuts into a loose version of Jimi Hendrix’s “Purple Haze.” As a goof, Kevin busts into a “chipmunk version” of the Little Texas tune, “What Might’ve Been.” It was the band’s first taste of pressure (tape recording the session).
The band ends the actual playing part of the practice at 9:00. A few band issues are discussed (handling of money-band funds). Jesse’s wife Lucinda (5 months pregnant) comes to the basement with John’s wife Rhonda. Lucinda would then spew opinion on the following topics:
Having a female in the band will only cause arguments.
Rhonda and her could do background vocals, and keyboards (note both females).
Adding a keyboardist isn’t needed and will cut into the profit for each member.
She LET Jesse be in the band to make money, and we need to do it soon.
The pressure of the band and it’s perfectionist attitude (using a metronome) is causing Jesse stress.
We need to have a name now cause she’s lining up bookings for us.
We should have all of our friends come to hear us when we perform at a jam night (the band wishes to use jam night as a test drive only).
We need to learn new songs and not screw off during practice (Jimi Hendrix was sighted) we only practice 3 hours a week.
Where we should play out first (parties, bars, jam nights).
How we should build our reputation
We’re good enough to play out now, and we should quit playing the same songs.
John, Dave, and Kevin explain how we are merely thinking of adding a female keyboardist who sings and plays the steel guitar. Dave would rather try her out than go through life wondering what it would’ve been like to have her in the band. Dave points out that the group has spent 10 minutes arguing over something that hasn’t and may never happened. Even if the keyboardist in question possessed the proper attitude, talent, musical talent, and personality, she may not want to join us. Rhonda leaves upon hearing enough of the band’s point.
Different accusations are made towards John about his perfectionist ways. John gets upset as he has spent 20 years in bands, and knows how to build a reputation. John knows that we will not immediately play the “big rooms.” If we blow our first impressions in the small rooms, we may never get into the big rooms. This is consistent with the band’s philosophy of being a better than the average band. John also tries to explain that we will not stay in the basement until things are perfect. Currently, we do not have enough songs to play out. The band does not wish to throw a bunch of songs together to and end up being mediocre.
Kevin backs up everything that John and Dave said. He also points the analogy that Dave used to explain trying out a keyboardist. “It’s like that girl in High School you could’ve banged but didn’t. You go through life wondering what it would’ve been like.” This does not sit well with Lucinda as she yells, “Great so everyone wants to bang her.” Kevin is upset because of the fact that he feels the band has done enough by furnishing the drummer with a set. This conversation seems to display an amount of ungratefulness.
John is upset as he has been called “negative,” and “stupid.” John has a complete understanding of where the band is going. He agrees (as does everyone) we need to learn more new songs.
Jesse has tried to end the discussion many times in an effort to go get something to eat. He’s tried to crack jokes to keep things light. One can’t help but think he must be a bit embarrassed.
Dave is upset as he leaves at 11:15 and will not get home until 12:00. In general, the band’s first fight had nothing to do with the band. It came from an outside source. Dave apologizes for the use of the metronome and explains how we were trying to get the tempo right for a certain song. It no way was a negative reflection on Jesse’s abilities. Dave wants to shout, “Look Yoko…” so bad he can taste it.
A mediocre practice ends on a very sour note.