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dos and don'ts

So You’ve Decided to Join the Smashing Pumpkins ...

"This is my microphone, and I will burp the alphabet into it as much as I like!"

As you may already know, Billy Corgan is currently holding auditions for the open bassist and keyboardist spots in the Smashing Pumpkins. All applications must be in by the end of the month, at which point Corgan will presumably sort through them, pluck a few exceptional candidates for a face to face, and eventually pick two lucky winners. In order to assist the new recruits during the transitional period — and to better help potential candidates decide if this is truly the job for them — we’ve compiled a list of dos and don'ts to working for Billy Corgan.

Don’t forget you are only there as a supporting member. As Corgan has explained it, "In my world I was like Michael Jordan. I could go to the hoop every time if I wanted to." That means, best case scenario, you are Scottie Pippen; worst case, B.J. Armstrong. Either way, you are not Michael Jordan.

Do bring board games and magazines to the studio. While never confirmed, it’s largely assumed that Corgan played most of the instruments on the Pumpkins records himself. If Billy schedules a recording session but then impulsively decides he wants to play your keyboard line, you’re going to want to have something to do for the rest of the afternoon.

Do pay at least a cursory amount of attention to the WWE. Corgan loves professional wrestling, and knowing who the Big Show is, and why his Cobra Clutch Backbreaker is so effective, might mean major brownie points with the man in charge.

Do read his LiveJournal. Corgan has repeatedly put ex-bandmates on blast via this passé blogging platform, famously calling D’arcy Wretzky a “mean spirited drug addict” and saying “james iha broke up the smashing pumpkins.” Recent posts have focused more on stuff like his favorite guitar, but if there's a chance you're being badmouthed on LiveJournal, you’re going to want to monitor the situation.

Don’t write songs about the Cubs. If you do write one, like Eddie Vedder did, and then they don’t win the World Series, Billy will probably blame you directly.

Don’t write songs about the Cubs. If you do write one, like Eddie Vedder did, and then they don’t win the World Series, Billy will probably blame you directly.

If you are a woman, do know how to play bass. Otherwise, you’re probably not in the band: The role of Pumpkins bassist has been filled, in succession, by D’arcy Wretzky, Melissa Auf der Maur, and Ginger Pooley.

Don’t get too close to anyone. And this is the most important rule of all. After the band’s initial 2000 breakup, Corgan reunited the Pumpkins in 2005, but only managed to get drummer Jimmy Chamberlain onboard. Chamberlain has left as well, and now Pooley’s on her way out, which is only the latest development in Corgan’s revolving door of touring musicians. Look to your left, then look to your right: One of your bandmates will probably be gone in the next six months.

Photo: Amanda Edwards/Getty Images