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There is no online courtship ritual for musicians. It’s 2014: Tinder and OKCupid are probably valued at more money than I’ll see in my entire life, but there aren’t any GPS apps for musicians just looking for a platonic jam session. I mean, I get it—romantic connection is a near-universal human desire, while jamming through hand-me-down amps is not quite as sought out. But musicians have to take their anonymous thirst somewhere, and with no specialized network to join (yet), they take it to Craigslist.
Craigslist has seen its personals section sapped by Tinder in recent years, which is a plus for anyone looking to filter creeps, but that classic white-on-black listings site that never seems to age is apparently still the go-to for certain shades of embryonic bands. It’s strange terrain out there, but certain types keep popping up looking for that final piece to complete their musical ensemble. Here’s a field guide to the wilderness.
The shockingly specific interests
It’s not always enough for musicians to jell on a creative level. You’ve got to play with people who geek out about the same stuff you do, who get you as a person on a certain level. For some musicians, that level is narrow and well-defined. And so you get people soliciting guitarists for an acoustic tribute band to the AMC zombie series The Walking Dead.
As well as punk dudes who are just looking to drink some beer, play some Xbox, and tell you all about Russia’s radioactive wolves.
The necromantic cover bands
Most cover bands maintain a broad catalog to score paying gigs in flexible settings. Some have one thing and stick to it. Some are looking for animated wax replicas of their favorite dead superstars.
You’ll find him 20 years ago, along with Bob Hope and Steve Jobs.
Some want to be the Beatles, only with too many members and a knack for bluegrass.
Others only want to resurrect their heroes from cultural death.
Pre-iPhone songs only.
There are vocalists, and then there are singers. This is their passion and their craft. They are not kidding around.
He is nicknamed “Mr. Pipes.”
The scare-quote craftsmen
These musicians are looking for a little something extra in their work. They’re not quite sure what it is, but they know it belongs between copious quotation marks.
The practitioners of literal witchcraft
He’s been playing guitar for 150 of those years.
No BS, just personalized lessons from a were-cat.