Collaboration Strategies for Band Musicians




Dr. Erol Onel, an executive in pharmaceutical development at Heron Therapeutics, enjoys playing music in his free time. Dr. Erol Onel plays piano, guitar, bass, violin, and drums, and has shared his talents as a member of several bands.

For musicians playing with others in a band, teamwork is key. Band members must not only be reliable in their musicianship and skill, but also dependable as colleagues. In the world of music, this means coming to rehearsal with parts learned, equipment ready, and administrative tasks completed. Bandmates must be willing to take on the tasks assigned to them, yet must not overreach and take on tasks that belong to other people.

In rehearsal, band members should have a positive attitude and show support for fellow players. Many newcomers to the music industry carry the false assumption that cynicism and superiority is appealing, but the truth of the music business is that very few people want to play with someone who is unpleasant. A can-do spirit and pleasant persona generally gets a musician much more work.

Band members must also commit to professionalism when working with agents, venue owners, and fans. All members of the band must communicate articulately with these key personnel, while taking care to arrive on time and commit fully to every job. This shows respect to bandmates and audiences alike.