Being in a band. Every true dude’s dream. To follow in the footsteps of legends like Springsteen, Van Halen and Bruce Springsteen. But becoming a rock star isn’t easy, and unless you’re blessed with the godlike tongue prowess of Gene Simmons, it’s a rough road. If you really want to make it, just follow these simple steps to gut busting, leather pants-wearing glory.
Step 1: Assemble Your Band
This step can take some time. You and a friend will probably start in a basement with a keyboard and a drumset doing awful covers of pop punk songs and actively encouraging your parents to go all Casey Anthony on you. Don't stop now, you’re on the right track. When your friend gets a girlfriend, or inevitably realizes the futility of trying to be a successful musician, he’ll get on with his life. So throw some word art on a flier and head to Kinko's because it’s finally time to seek out your bandmates. Here are some key attributes you’re going to want to look for right off the bat.
There are two schools of bass playing, and only two. They are “houseplant” and “sixth grader on meth”. The first guy to answer your ad will be enthusiastic about jamming and seems like someone who you could really be friends with. Don’t let him within a mile of your fucking band. Does he look like he’s spent the last six years with the curtains drawn in his bedroom perfecting the bassline to Master of Puppets? Does he jump around like an idiot and make you want to strangle him to death with your bare hands? No? Then he is not the bassist you’re looking for. Also, it is preferable if your bassist actually knows bass, but it isn’t really required. Everyone knows the bass is the guitar’s fat sister.
When meeting with potential guitarists, always say you want to meet at noon. If any candidates show up before three turn them away right then and there. A guitarist’s biggest responsibility is being late to everything. By 4:30, your white knight on a glimmering silver stallion will appear. He will be high, and he will be drunk, because he knows his role. He did not drive to your house, because he doesn’t own a car. Or have a license. If he does own a car, it is definitely "in the shop". Set up a rating system, say a scale from Billy Ray Cyrus to Hendrix. If he falls anywhere below Cobain then turn him away, he is not worthy to melt faces alongside you. When you’ve finally found him, stay close to this man, for he is your one way ticket to Vaginaville.
"MUST HAVE VAN" should be part of your ad, and should be the major deciding factor for who gets the gig. Bonus points if there is an airbrushed mural on the side panel. Be very clear that when you meet them they should have a picture of their drumset. Why? Because every dude knows that more drums equals more rock. Anyone with fewer than 12 pieces should be ridiculed. The drummer’s personality is very important. He should be a driven, competent individual with a tendency for extreme violence and some pretty serious substance abuse problems. At any bar you play, he should be blackout drunk and actively trying to start a fight with the bouncer for not knowing the name of your shitty band when you walked through the door. You should be able to see yourself as someone who can back him up in future fights and make sure he doesn’t die choking on his own vomit. Also, no fatties. Everyone knows real drummers take their shirts off.
If anyone applying has even the smallest shred of decency or humility, tell those nerds to fuck right off. You're not looking for some Mother Teresa, you're looking to snag a Grade-A Douchebag. In conversation, every topic will inevitably return to him, his abs, or his hair. Whatever you do, do not discourage this. A singer’s skill is directly tied to how often his ego reaches climax. You will know you’ve found your frontman when he tells you he has to leave early because he’s got “places to see and people to do.” Bonus points if he winks.
Step 2: Naming Your Band
Sadly, this is a group discussion. Even if you’ve dreamed of having a band called THE FUCKS for years, today’s probably not going to be the day that dream comes to fruition. First, look for inspiration. Included here is a short list of the most Dudefest band names of all time:
THE DEAD KENNEDYS!
Whatever you do, just steer clear of names like STRAWBERRY ALARM CLOCK, PARAMORE, and HOOBASTANK.
Step 3: Gigs
It’s finally time to play a show! You’ve been practicing for weeks, and it’s paid off. When inviting people, one must be very careful to ride the line between cool and desperate. I recommend making a facebook event, peppering it with very cool phrases like “rock out with our cocks out” (for the ladies) and “good old fashioned rock and roll.” Studies have found that people respond well to those and don’t think they’re lame or played out at all. Then, invite every friend you have. That kid from camp who was in your cabin when you were 12, your grandma, and every awkward acquaintance you’ve had over the years now knows you’ll be playing at a local bar at 7:30 pm sharp, for the low, low price of 10 bucks! After you’ve waded through the maybes and the excuses for not being able to make it, it’ll finally be that fateful day. Load up everything in your drummer’s trusty scuzzmobile and hit the road.
When you arrive, the place will be empty except for a few high schoolers milling at the back of the room, too nervous to try out their fake IDs. The band before you will be playing, and you and your bandmates can all jerk each other off really quick while you talk about how much tastier your licks are. Then it’s time to take the stage. Guitars are plugged in, feedback squeals, and you have finally taken the step into the limelight. Your journey towards rock stardom has begun! No more day job! No more bills to pay! Just a whole lot of sex, money and drugs coming your way! You’re on top of the world, in your glistening, babe-shaped rock and roll throne! THE WORLD ITSELF CANNOT HANDLE YOUR PURE HIGH-OCTANE SHREDDING AS YOU ASCEND INTO YOUR PLANAR FORM!
Or you all die in obscurity. But hey, what are the chances of that?
You can find more of Pockets's dangerously misinformed decisions by following him on twitter @tharealpockets.