Week Before Gig Preparation

Suggestions for how to prepare your live band the final week before your gig.

In Stereo At 2002 Winter Olympics   Having a big gig on the calender is the main goal of every live band. If you’re lucky, you’ve had plenty of time to prepare for your gig,  you’ve got all the songs learned and your show is completely rehearsed. There are a few things I like to be on top of my game the week before a big gig.

   The first thing I do is spend time alone practicing any parts that I have trouble with. This includes complicated guitar solos, tricky lyrics or anything that gives me rhythmic problems. I like to just put a little more polish and sparkle on my playing the final week before a big gig so I put in some extra time playing with a metronome as well. I try not to overdo it but the extra practice really settles my nerves.

   I also like to do an equipment check to make sure all my instruments, amplifiers, microphones and cords are in good working order. If anything needs to be fixed or replaced, the week before your gig is your last chance to do it. I do a check on the P.A. and lighting systems as well to make sure all cords and connections are in good working order.

   I like to have a final band practice the week before a gig. We usually have just one rehearsal the week of a gig because by this time all the problems in songs are usually ironed out and having too many practices the week of a gig can kill your energy. We’ll run through whatever music is the trickiest to play but then we usually just have fun enjoying hearing ourselves play some good music. This final practice is usually fun and easy although there will be times when you’re rough and out of sync. That’s not a problem if you’ve had some good recent practices. It usually means you’re going to have a great gig so don’t sweat a rough final practice.

   Finally, I get the songlist all finalized and make sure there are enough copies for everyone. I like to pack all my gear up the night before the gig so I don’t have to rush around packing things the day of the gig. That way I can just haul equipment and set up on gig day. It’s a simple gig week routine but that’s the way I like it. I also enjoy spending some time with the family or just hanging out having fun. It’s good to relax before all the work on gig day.

Author: Live Musician Central

My name is Matt Rushton. I have been playing in bands for 27 years. I've been playing professionally for 21 years. I have opened for Sheryl Crow, Barenaked Ladies, Joan Jett, Little River Band, and Quiet Riot.

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