Brett Jolly’s Daily Thought (How I set my own expectations for playing)

I play for a “lot” of different groups. If someone needs a bass player (because he can’t make the gig for some reason) I am usually most people’s first call in the Philadelphia and surrounding areas. Why is that so? There are several reasons. First, no one has to set up a rehearsal for me beforehand. I come in ready to play. I also don’t play loud. I like to blend in with the people I am playing with. I also have this motto that helps me with everything musically that I want to tackle. My motto is “I play EVERYTHING.” Yes, I realize that this statement will open some eyes wide, but please hear me out. First off, I honestly do not believe that I can play everything, because there are some songs that are extremely difficult to pick up on the fly. However, with my expertise and my perfect pitch, I think I can do a great job figuring out most tunes that I have never played before (or never heard before). Most important for me is that if I don’t set high standards for myself, then how can I expect others to ┬ábelieve in me? I tell all the groups to “not alter” their set lists and that I will make the necessary adjustments to follow them. If I have heard the song before, “I will play it.” However, if I have never heard the song before, “I will play it.” I have had some trials when it comes to playing with other established ┬ábands. One time a guy give me a list of songs and wanted to know which songs I knew (so he could scratch the others off the list). I told him that I may not recognize some of the titles, but I will still play all the songs. He then said, “Listen, I’m serious.” I responded back by saying “So am I.” Needless to say he wasn’t impressed, at least not until AFTER the gig was finished and I played “every song.” He apologized to me for misjudging me. Whenever I do a gig with someone I always figure things out by the “look back” effect. If no one looks back at me to question what I am playing then I must be doing things well. If I detect smiles on their faces then I must “really” be doing a great job. Either way I keep a professional mentality. This helps me a lot, and it might explain why I get so many gigs. Having the mentality to “play everything” may not truly be realistic but it helps me to set the bar high for what I do… I thank God for this ability. Thank you for checking out my Daily Thought, and as always I wish you the very best that life has to offer.

Brett Jolly

Brett new