Musician’s Song List
Posted: 19 October 2011 05:02 PM   [ Ignore ]
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I’m looking for the jargon term(s) that musicians and bands use to call the list of songs that they know and can play at a gig, their repertoire.

The term I’m looking for has gone out of my head, but I know it when I’ll see it. Anyone know any?

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Posted: 19 October 2011 10:50 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1 ]
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Set list? Or is that just what they are actually playing?

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Posted: 20 October 2011 03:06 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2 ]
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Yeah, the set list is what they plan to play in a given performance. I’m thinking of a term for the entire repertoire.

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Posted: 21 October 2011 03:00 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 3 ]
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I know some of the folks who would use this term, I’ll ask.

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Posted: 21 October 2011 03:51 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 4 ]
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It’s er..., the repetoire isn’t it?

We used to say ‘is it in the bag?’ but I wouldn’t tar every group with the same brush.

Kind of agree though… there is another term, must ask around.

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Posted: 21 October 2011 03:51 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 5 ]
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First response was “rep list”, “rep” for repertoire.  Next response, this from an actual bar band player, was “Rep list works.  We call ours The Master List.” Sounds like rep list is the general term but individual bands might have their own names for it.

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Posted: 22 October 2011 03:59 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 6 ]
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Rep list is a new one for me. (But that doesn’t mean anything. I’m not a musician.) There is another term that’s slipped my mind. I’ll know it when I hear it.

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Posted: 23 October 2011 04:05 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 7 ]
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I haven’t been able to recall any specific word for ‘rep list’ or ‘rep book’ that stands out in memory.  If such a word exists, I am almost certain to have heard it, but I cannot recall any special one.  I use “my rep list” or “my book” and bands I have played in use “rep list” and make up “set lists” for individual shows, and “sample set lists” to gain bookings.  Technology has made making a DVD easier than presenting a paper list, though some of the older folks who book for their venues still like to see paper. 

There is the term, ‘The Real Book’ and also the term, “fake book” as in ”a fake book.” These are both books of lists of musical information that allow a musician to “fake” knowing the material.  That is to say, a “fake book” gives a competent player enough information to create his part in a manner that should be unperceived by the audience, while performing live, on-stage.  Sometimes chord names will be called out (or whispered) such as “OK, this is a C A-minor F and G, but in the key of ...” Mostly, before the show, if there is time, notes will be scrawled on a piece of paper maintained in a discreet location, or even taped to a mic-stand if the show is ‘casual’ enough to allow this. 

The term ‘The Real Book’ originated at Berklee School of Music (late 1960’s, early 1970’s?), students there made their own chord charts for nearly all jazz standards.  These ‘charts’ were passed around for many years and copied eventually by musicians outside of Berklee.  At one point, nearly every performing musician had a version of “The Real Book.” There were errors, copyright issues, and poor quality issues--i.e., many entries were handwritten or transcribed, often faultily, from handwritten notes. 

To me, the term ‘fake book’ means a usually large, usually purchased book or looseleaf set of pages or cards listing in a kind of musical shorthand many songs or pieces of varying genre, such as Rock, Folk, Country, Metal, Funk, etc.  Wikipedia offers:

...A fake book is a collection of musical lead sheets intended to help a performer quickly learn new songs. Each song in a fake book contains the melody line, basic chords, and lyrics - the minimal information needed by a musician to make an impromptu arrangement of a song, or “fake it.”
The fake book is a central part of the culture of playing music in public, particularly in jazz, where improvisation is particularly valued.
Fake books are not intended for novices: the reader must follow and interpret the scant notation, and generally needs to have thorough familiarity with chords and sheet music....

The term ‘Book’ or “My Book’ is an individual artist’s rep list, the songs or pieces known by the musician whose ‘Book’ it is.  Generally, it is comprised of only minimal information and hand-written in a shorthand tailored to the individual musician and instrument(s). 

Entries in my book are as abrupt as:

Ed’s opening 12-bar
I IV V

I, I, I, I
IV, IV, I, I
V, IV, I, I

I III V VI IIX—↑↓

Such an entry allows the key to remain unspecified and therefore the information remains applicable over all keys rather than only for a single key which would be the case if notes (such as for the ‘key of A’: A D E - instead of I IV V) were specified.  And actually many entries are even more terse, such as “King’s Crow/ 130bpm B A D E X3 - G C solo on D-E” all handwritten for the most part; parts I have digitized end up being hand-marked and drawn on and written on pretty quickly. 

I cannot recall any special word for “my [rep] book” or “our [rep] book”.  I have heard “my kit” but I don’t think that’s likely to be the one the OP is looking for.

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Posted: 23 October 2011 10:04 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 8 ]
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"Set” would be my word for what was going to be played at a gig. I hear comedians talking a having a 5 minute set and the choir I sing with sings in sets, especially when other choirs precede or follow us. I think set is a different word to what the full repertoire is, given most bands know more songs than they can play. Imagine a Rolling Stones concert where they do everything they can do versus a chosen set!

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Posted: 24 October 2011 02:43 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 9 ]
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Fake book was what I was thinking of, but of course it means something different from what I misremembered it as. Thanks.

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