Forming a Band for Beginners

Do you appreciate music? Do you play an instrument? Do you want to form a band? Well, if the answer is yes, you are in the right place! This article is going to provide you with the steps on how to form your own band! Forming your own band is a great way to break out of your shell of playing alone in your bedroom and start sharing your music with others. Stop playing for your pets and start playing for your peers; your music belongs on the stage! Forming a band will require motivation, confidence, talent, and networking skills, just to name a few. Following these steps will give you a great place to start. One of the greatest feelings is playing music in front of a live audience. Play for yourself, play for your family and friends, play for strangers, because we all come together through music. Here are the seven steps which I believe will help you turn your dream into a reality!


Step 1: Recruit Band Members – When starting out, you need to find other people you would like to play music with. Reach out to friends, friends of friends, put out advertisements, etc. Whichever way you can find people to play will work. This is arguably the most important step– if you have nobody to play with, you won’t have a band.


Step 2: Finding Your Sound – Once you have found your bandmates, figure out what kind of music you are looking to play. Are you looking to play one genre? Or are you looking to play a broad variety of music? This should be something you have a general idea of while recruiting band members in step one, so that you and your bandmates may have similar interests. If you are going to be a cover band, I would suggest learning a large variety of different kinds of music. This is to better prepare you for different kinds of gigs in various environments. If you are going to perform original songs, then hats off to you, it’s great to be original!


Step 3: Start Learning Some Songs! – After you figure out the kind of music you would like to play, pick some songs and start learning them! To start out, you can have each band member pick 1-2 two songs for the band to learn. Once you have those songs learned, rehearsed and feel confident playing, start learning more to build up your catalog. Try to have at least 30 songs under your belt, ready to play at a moment’s notice; you never know when someone might request one! You should pick a nice balance of songs that are crowd pleasers, meaning songs that the crowd will know and will dance to, along with some songs that you really like, even if they are lesser known. The general ratio of crowd pleasers to self pleasers is 2:1. Some reliable songs to get you started would be “Sweet Child O’ Mine” by Guns n’ Roses, “Mr. Brightside” by The Killers, “All the Small Things” by Blink-182, “You Shook Me All Night Long” by AC/DC.


Step 4: Find a Rehearsal Space – Whether it be your garage, basement, backyard, pool house, school, church, etc., you need a place to rehearse with your band. You can pretty much rehearse anywhere, as long as you have space, electricity, good acoustics, and most importantly… undisturbed neighbors! If you don’t have any space in your house, you can ask around to your school, church, or you can rent studio space. Once again, whatever works for your band will suffice. 


Step 5: Build a Brand – To help your chances of getting gigs, build a brand behind your band. Try saying that five times fast! Think of a catchy band name, gather a following on social media, upload promotional videos/recordings on your website, hand out flyers, make stickers, make T-Shirts, etc. Even record a demo of your music to show what your band can do. These steps are crucial to launching your band’s image. Build up an array of signature stage moves or borrow some of the classics. Your image is everything and remember, you are putting on a show.


Step 6: Get Gigs! – This is the moment you have been waiting for, playing your first gig! Have a bundle of promotional material like recordings and videos available to present to venue owners. This will give them a taste of what your band is capable of, and will instill faith in the venue. If it is your first gig, and do not have any footage of your band playing on stage, record yourselves at rehearsal; it is enough to get you started and then you can build up from there. Build connections between you and the venue owners so that it becomes easier to get gigs in the future. You have to reach out and put yourself out there, otherwise you can’t proceed past that point.


Step 7: Have Fun With It! – The most important part of playing music is having fun with it! Don’t take yourself too seriously while playing and make the most of every moment. Invite your friends and family to come watch you play and engage with the crowd; this makes the overall experience more enjoyable for everyone. If you get too critical of every little thing, you may overlook the enjoyment that is found in the craft. Put in the time and effort in learning the music, practice your stage presence, get gigs, make sure your equipment is properly set up and functioning, but most of all enjoy every opportunity you get. Break everything up into one step at a time, and everything will fall into place.


I hope you find use in this article and that it supplies you with the fundamental knowledge needed to start your own band. Playing music is one of the greatest feelings and live music can add so much to an atmosphere. It is never too late to form a band and if you’ve never played out before, come see what you’re missing!