Most Helpful Guy
First off, I would give up on getting rid of nervousness in it’s entirety. I’m been in multiple bands and gone on stage plenty of times. I still get a little nervous. Nerves are standard.
That being said, you can get less nervous— where your nervousness won’t be a hinderance.
What I would suggest is facing your fear at a gradual level. When people have phobias, for instance, the way treatment goes for them is to be exposed gradually. Phobias and the like are created from continual avoidance. Hence, if you face the issue, you’ll get more comfortable/less afraid.
I would first get comfortable around playing with any of your musician buddies in a jam sesh. It’ll be fun, and you’ll get more used to playing in a group setting.
If you don’t feel comfortable getting on stage at this point, I’d suggest hanging out with your musician friends at a park or someplace public to jam. Do something acoustic or whatnot. Since there are people around, it’ll be more nerve-wracking than the previous step but less nerve wracking than a stage (since they aren’t focusing on you).
After that, I would then suggest facing your fear and jumping on stage. Of course, it’s a good idea to practice a lot beforehand. Practice helps a lot.
When you get on stage, I would suggest a few things...
— Have fun. This is the most important thing. If you treat it like a fun experience, you’ll feel more comfortable and you’ll also perform better.
— Mistakes will happen. Don’t expect perfection. When I go play drums for my current band, I make plenty of mistakes. I keep going though. So, my advice is to trudge through. If you get too perfectionist, you’ll freeze up, which is not good. Realistically, people in crowds don’t notice small things anyway. Tbh, crowds don’t notice the small things anyway. I’ve made mistakes I thought were glaring, and audience members afterwards mention how they didn’t even notice.
— The first gig is generally the roughest, but after that it becomes much easier.
— Almost exaggerate the stage performance. Most likely, you’ll be more timid than you realize. Move around. Look passionate. Also, whatever you do, don’t read chords or help off your phone (I know a guy that did that. Looked realky bad). Go all in and live in the present while you’re up there.
I used to screw up a ton more in front of others too. Hands would get sweaty, I couldn’t think straigt. Whatever. Exposure to the fear is what really helped though1