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...and party every day
2004-07-31 - 11:29 a.m.

I play guitar and sing in a band named Brake for Winslow.

We're a covers / originals band that plays in Richmond, and we generally have a good time, and people like to come see us when we play out somewhere. And therein lies the problem.

For a terribly long period of time (since February 7, actually), we have not had a gig. This sucks on many levels:

Level 1) I constantly have friends asking when is our next gig. When I tell them that we don't have anything lined up, it is a reminder to me that we have not played out for a really long time.

Level 2) Practice space. Although we have a wonderful deal with a friend of mine for inexpensive (yet spacious) practice space, it's still kind of another sore reminder every month when I pay rent out-of-pocket. Last year we were able to pay for our practice space with the money we made from our gigs. We weren't making enough to buy new cars or start expensive coke habits, but at least practice space rental was not out-of-pocket.

Level 3) Morale. Because I'm an artist, and I have an unexplainable deep need for acceptance, I need to have that crowd. Seeing my bandmates each week is great, but I sure would like to see a crowd again. So, morale is flagging

Level 4) I have not been able to run up a "free" beer tab at a gig.

So, this past week at practice, I let the guys know that for about the past six weeks I have been debating about leaving the band. It sucked to have to say it, but I've always held the philosophy that I will hold onto anything until it is no longer fun or healthy for me. Granted, this has made me into a bit of a packrat, but I still contend that it's a good plan.

As a band, we are not very typical. No one has an ego about being better than the other bandmates, every one likes one another as human beings, and we actually show up to practice. If you have never been in a band, believe me when I say that you almost never have a band situation where at least one of those things is not an issue.

And that is what makes this a difficult decision. As part of my philosophy, I want to hold onto things that are fun. And the band members are a lot of fun. Every week after practice, we head out for a few beers, and laugh and joke and have a great time. Every last one of these guys is funny, genuine, and loyal. And you don't piss away things like that.

As it stands, I'm still hanging in there, and I promised the guys that I'm not going to come to practice in two weeks without my gear and say that I quit. If / when I do decide to quit, I'll stick it out with them until they can get a new singer / guitarist. But I'm hoping that time won't come soon.

WE NEED A GIG! So, if you are living in Richmond, Virginia, and you are reading this, and you know of a place where Brake for Winslow can rock, please contact us! We'll work cheap! We usually do! But we need to get out, to play in front of a crowd, to feel that energy from a collection of slightly-drunk, swaying patrons!

We want to Rock and Roll all night!

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