Have a booking in the diary that your bass player can’t make? Need a reliable dep that could confidently support you?
What do I offer?
I provide a friendly, reliable bass depping service to local cover, party/function bands and acts across the South of England. As well as supporting ad hoc dep gigs, my main aim is to align and partner with a number of quality bands, offering permanent dep support when required. For a band leader this means having the confidence to be able to call upon an ‘up to speed’ resource whenever a gig needs covering.
To represent your band as best as possible, my approach is very much focused towards two key areas: Firstly, being able to perform and engage fully with both the band and crowd to provide great experiences for the audience. Secondly, to ensure that I’m able to faithfully reproduce basslines and provide an authentic sound. Therefore a lot of my efforts happen well before the gig to ensure I’m well organised, prepared, with a focus on meticulously learning the material.
Having played and depped in numerous function/party bands, I’m well versed with most party band set lists, pulling from an extensive repertoire of music. However I would be keen to work with you initially to identify the gaps and the specifics of how your band cover the material. Where necessary I’m also able to offer the option of backing vocals.
On the day, I see myself as very much part of the team so would look to fully engage with the band and proactively contribute to all setup activities. As you would expect, I have quality gear that is fully PAT tested, able to travel and happy to dress in accordance with your needs as a band.
What’s my history?
As a self taught musician, I started out on keyboards and guitar and progressed to bass, playing in a number of local original bands. After being asked to stand in for a local function band I made the switch to covers and never looked back. Establishing myself as a bass player within a successful function band, I quickly took on more responsibility as the musical lead as well as taking an interest in the marketing side of the band. This developed into me taking on the band leader role for a number of successful acts including a 70s disco band, a Jam tribute and a number of function/party bands, playing public, private and corporate events across the South of England. Having the opportunity to build and grow a number of bands from nothing along with the experience of working directly with clients and agencies has given me the perfect insight into customer expectations and what needs to be delivered.
Whilst I’ve spent most of my time as a band leader, I’ve also depped with numerous locals bands and had the opportunity to perform regularly in a Bandaoke band with the challenge of covering over 400 songs! All of this has helped me build up a large repertoire of music, playing and performing a breadth of genres.
The challenge of playing with other musicians and experiencing more varied situations has been the main inspiration to move from being a band leader to focus more on the depping side. However the buzz for me still comes from working as a team, creating great music and watching audiences enjoying themselves. It’s a privileged position to be able to entertain like this so regardless of the music being played as long as people are enjoying it … so am I!
What’s my philosophy?
After working with dep musicians in the past as a band leader, I’ve gained a clear understanding of the role and what is required to support bands and their clients effectively.
I know from experience that having to draft in a dep to cover can be a time consuming and stressful process, especially when you are striving to present a professional band to clients at all time. Therefore my aim is to take away as much of the stress as possible and take responsibility to represent your band and brand in the right way.
Whilst I’ll be looking to work with you initially to understand what specifically you need, I’ll be very much self sufficient towards my preparation, which will minimise the impact to the band and give you confidence. Regardless of the gig, I’ll be striving to be the best I can on the day so will always put the work in to be prepared.
I know from my experiences how frustrating it can be when you get someone who either tries to busk it, turns up late and simply plugs in, those that do their thing without interacting with the band or have their head permanently in musical charts. My focus is very much towards working together with the band to ensure we deliver a quality performance and an overall great event. Therefore on the day I’d be proactive in working and interacting with the band to contribute to the organisation, in the same way you’d expect from any other band member.
Once onstage the focus will switch to actually performing alongside the band – engaging the audience and giving a seamless show.
How would I work with you?
When I start working with a band I’m keen to prepare in a way that not only gets me up to speed for the forthcoming gig but also put me in a position to be ready for any other possible follow up gigs.
So if it’s the first time working with your band I would start by getting an insight into the band and the role that you’d like me to play so that I can support you as best I can. This could include providing backing vocals where necessary.
Initially I would walk through the proposed set list with the band leader or bass player, focusing on the starts and ending and arrangement changes verses the original recording eg key changes, medleys etc. This would include any backing vocals you’d like me to cover. Any audio clips or charts you have would help but not essential.
At this stage I’ll transcribe and chart the music so songs can be learnt as quickly and accurately as possible. This will also support with the upskilling for any future opportunities. Whilst its not essential, I’d be happy to rehearse with the band beforehand if you'd like to run through a set. Prior to the gig you’ll need to advise around details of the gig and requirements around attire and anything specific related to stage performance.
To support any other future opportunities, I’ll look to audio record the gig on the day through a portable recorder and keep on file. For bands that would like to use me as an ongoing resource I’d be keen to keep in regular contact to make sure I’m up to speed with set changes etc.