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By: ukdenny
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By Robert Lloyd (www.heroesinhistorymovies.com)

Songwriters, singers, and musicians mix well to a degree. We are all very different in many ways. And then many of us are a mix of all three... as I am. But I am definitely a songwriters first and foremost. And then there will be some of us that are musicians first and foremost and singers, etc...

Point is... you have to KNOW who you are. And that is not always easy as it first seems. The intrigue of public performances, getting paid for the performance, and the public adulation is a huge pull on anyone. We all have an ego to feed. But once you get over that urge to perform in front of drunks, partiers, druggies, your mom and dad's friends from the club, and then working into the wee hours of the morning, you start coming to your senses.

As I look back on my years of being a professional musician, I just detest the time spent playing 'cover tunes' in order to make a living. But I had my limits... I never played “Tie a Yellow Ribbon Round That Old Oak Tree” nor would ever play “Baby, Don't Get Hooked On Me” as I would tell that someone until Mac Davis buttons up his shirt I'm not playing that song. The more recent horror is when I go to a restaurant here in south Florida and the band or singer-guitarist thinks he is going to play “Margaritaville” while I'm eating my dinner. And yes, I usually warn them NOT TO PLAY JIMMY BUFFETT. I'm obviously not for everybody (company-wise). When you eat dinner with me, sometimes things get a bit exciting.

But general cover tunes bother me and may be the primary reason for me getting out of the band business. Does anyone really want to hear “Sweet Home Alabama” again and again and again? I wish Ronnie Van Zant was still alive to sing it of course. But I don't need someone doing his Van Zant impressions. Gosh, to be honest, I get out of anywhere I eat at as quickly as I can when cover bands play in the vicinity. It is so cheesy.

But you know what? Almost everyone does it. Now hear this... the Beatles did it and blew an audition with Decca Records in 1962 as they just performed covers, and who really wants to hear another Elvis or Buddy Holly rendition... and worse, Jimmy Buffett if they were still a band today.

And another thing to consider... *musicians are the mechanics of music. They are people I cherish for their abilities to make sounds that other people cannot do. And as a *songwriter you are one of the creators of music. Many songwriters can barely play three chords. When someone asks me about my level of guitar playing, I tell them I am a good musician as far a songwriters go, but I usually don't call myself a musician. I'm a songwriter.

And then you have the *singers... and they are 80% of a recording (out side of the song itself). You would much prefer an average soundtrack with a great vocalist than a great soundtrack with just an average singer. We can't get around that. But when the singer's ego gets to be a bit much, everyone wants to punch him/her in the nose. So we have the mechanics (musicians), the creators (songwriters) and egotists (singers)... and somehow they have to jive and get along to make new music for the world.

Just don't play me a cover tune.

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Robert Lloyd
06/08/18 06:09:07PM @robert-lloyd:
I don't know who wrote this article, but it is amazing! Joking aside, I started reading this article and was bewildered that I agreed so wholeheartedly with the author, only to look up and saw my name there. LOL. I think Denny must have posted this. Thanks my friend.
Robert Lloyd