How do you tell someone it's time to retire?

Discussion in 'The Rehearsal Room' started by Spanky Rear, Aug 9, 2004.

  1. Spanky Rear

    Spanky Rear Member

    I imagine that many Bands have had face up to this thorny problem.Is there'a best way' to handle it?
  2. Moy

    Moy Active Member

    If you have training (Junior) band ask if they would go there.
    With all their experience they could help all the younger players
  3. jameshowell

    jameshowell Active Member

    This wouldnt be why you were being so nice to Kirsty all of a sudden on MSN would it? she thought it was a little fishy! Lol!

    Seriously though, it sounds like good advice from Moy, I'm sure there are very few players who would begrudge helping a junior band woth their experience. It's a good feeling knowing you have helped a player progress.
  4. Majoresteve

    Majoresteve Member

    what do you mean by retire?
    leaving a band altogether, or just stepping down from their principal position?
  5. Spanky Rear

    Spanky Rear Member

    I meant leave altogether; but asking any player to step aside for another must be tricky.
  6. Majoresteve

    Majoresteve Member

    well if they have done something that is against the rules of the band, then get the committee yto directly ask that player to leave.

    but if its jsut because they are too old (not that you can be) then there is no easy way, try suggesting "retirement" as a joke and findign out how they feel about it.

    but why do you want them to retire? are they a strain to the social side of the band (if you get what i mean) or just not good enough?
  7. Moy

    Moy Active Member

    I am always nice to Kirsty....what do you mean. :wink:
  8. HBB

    HBB Active Member

    In my experience just not good enough. Its great that they're comitted and regular players, but sometimes you can't help but feel that they're holding the band back ...
  9. Big Twigge

    Big Twigge Active Member

    I'm not actually going to answer the question....just ask more instead. Diplomacy all the way!
    Is it fair to ask someone to stop doing a hobby that they enjoy and that gives them a sense of purpose and pleasure?
    On the other hand, is it fair to stop 25 other musicians from progressing by one weak player who may be a liability on the day!
  10. flugelgal

    flugelgal Active Member

    How about having a collection to buy them a carriage clock or something similar... :roll:
  11. Majoresteve

    Majoresteve Member

    if your band is really ambitious, and can afford to lose players that are "holding it back" then it is probably better that you ask them to leave. however this should only ever be done if you are certain that they really arent up to the job. also think of the other consequences that could happen, other people might leave because they disagree with the other person being asked to leave, or might be unhappy about it. this could ruin everything you had hoped to achieve by askign the player to leave in the first place.

    why do you not just as the player concerned to play a "lower" part?
  12. flugelgal

    flugelgal Active Member

    Do you think that lower parts are easier then? :?
  13. youngman

    youngman Member

    :( I'm afraid there is no easy way to deal with this one. Having pensioned a few off this year i know that nobody takes it well. Sometimes grim things have to be done for progress and the bullet has to be bit.
    Being nice doesn't work, all you get is abuse. I'm sure there will be more to come at our band, but all in the name of progress :? :? :?
  14. cornetcheese

    cornetcheese Member

    I remember hearing that a band I know once wanted to "retire" a player so they held a big meal in his honour to thank him for his time with the band and made a speech at the event that he would be stepping down, presenting him with an engraved pocketwatch. That`s the way to do it I think!
  15. Di B

    Di B Member

    It's a difficult one.....

    I think the best ideas are to offer non-contesting positions (let's be real, it saves on deps and fills seats!) or ask them to assist in the training/junior band (if they are good enough and capable of mentoring!) No one should feel that there is no seat at all anymore unless you are at the much higher end of banding where it is usually more cut throat.

    How about making the older, longstanding players life members or the president of the band to acknowledge all the work they have done?

    The only thing is if some bands retired off all the people they wanted to they wouldn't exist or become yet another band that has no more than 12 for every rehearsal and relies on uncommitted but strong players for contesting. I wonder if this is one of the reasons so many higher level bands cease to function nowadays?
  16. Brassbones

    Brassbones Member

    The method I'm used to observing is the player turning up to find someone sat in their seat! Un-subtle but very effective!

    If its due to senility / lack of teeth / incontinence etc.. you could always pinch their mouthpiece and slip a Saga holidays brochure in their case! :lol:
  17. Yoofman

    Yoofman Member

    I've seen this kind of thing happen before at the bands I've played with. No names here - one band was very cut throat and simply asked the player to move - the other was more subtle (i.e. did nothing and let the situation ride).

    In my experience neither of these approaches works - it's best to try and talk to the player, and put your POV across without coming across as nasty or cut throat. It's a really tough one to call though - ultimately it depends on if the player concerned can make a difference to your band. If they can - in whatever capacity - you shouldn't turn them away. If they can't - that's another story ....!

    (And by the way - I've been at a rehearsal where someone else has been put in someone's seat! - It does happen!)
  18. mikelyons

    mikelyons Supporting Member

    This is a really hideous situation to be in.

    How to solve it?

    Ultimately, IMHO, the final responsibility for who plays on the contest stage rests with the MD. If the MD feels that a particular player is not up to the standard needed to win, then it is part of their job to make that clear, tactfully and without hurting peoples' feelings - either those of the player themselves or their circle of friends within the band. There's nothing to stop an MD doing that, as long as it's in private and not in the full glare of rehearsal room publicity. Any MD with an ounce of feeling (I know, that's an oxymoron) should be able to tactfully suggest that a lower seat or a position on 4th percussion might be a better option for the contest stage, and that the player might find fulfilment in helping to bring on young players if there is a youth band. Many older players will be doing this anyway. I'm assuming, for the moment that it is an older player. If it's not urgent - i.e. you are not playing at Harrogate in September, there is also a possibility that the problem might resolve itself and the person might realise that the current standard is too much for them to cope with.

    From what you have said, there is the possibility of a new player to take over? In that case, the newer player could be asked to take a more active part in the section, specifically asked to play solo parts etc. (Tone more appropriate, quicker fingers, better range etc for this piece) But it does need to be done gently and subtly.

    The older player could still be allowed - in fact encouraged - to sit in the same seat at concerts. with any luck and a following wind this should work.

    If it's not an older player then you've got a much more serious problem. In this case, honesty is probably the best policy, but again it requires oodles of tact. Maybe a suggestion of an instrument change if possible? Maybe say that interest has been expressed in joining or whatever and hold full and open auditions. I'm not sure.

    I'm really just glad I'm not in thias position. Good Luck.
  19. moustache2b

    moustache2b New Member

    I hear a top flight Bb Bass player was 'brassed off' when his band let him go via telephone a few years ago :wink:
  20. HBB

    HBB Active Member

    Unfortunately, some people think that they're better than they are...

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