Author Topic: Cheapo gigs  (Read 1876 times)


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Cheapo gigs
« on: May 21, 2014, 05:50:42 pm »
I am doing lots of band pimping.  Contacting club owners and responding to people "looking for bands".  I am finding a few (very few) decent gigs, and lots of garbage.

Pretty much anyone making a public announcement, that they are looking for bands, is looking for cheap, if not free.  One guy was booking for a club, and he asked me how many people we would bring in (I hate that f'ing question.  Usually the first red flag that I'm dealing with a douche.)  I said, realistically maybe 20.  Maybe more, maybe less on any given day.  Told him that we are 4 piece, and our minimum price was $400.   He came back with "well at 20 people and $400, the club loses money."  (Figured its pointless to attempt to educate this guy that it is not the bands responsibility to bring in all the patrons for the night.)  So, I came back with "what do you usually pay, and how many people do those bands bring in?"  Guy says "usually bring in 40-50 people, and we usually pay around $100."  I came back with "good luck with that, for us to go play a gig for $100 would be charity; actually I've been paid more for charity gigs."

Today I saw a FB post for a guy looking bands to fill Tuesday nights.  Two bands per night, two hours each band.  The catch:  Not only is it a door gig.  But the promoter takes 50% off the top of the door.   Then the two bands split the remaining 50%.   And its a 30 mile drive; 50 miles for my two guys on the other side of town.   I told him that we can't drive to Lawrence for 1/4 of the door-- best case scenario would probably be gas money.  Another "no thanks, good luck with that".

Unfortunately for the rest of us, there are kid/garage bands who will take those gigs.  In the past, I've taken a few of these "exposure" gigs, but I am way over that!  These guys deserve the shitty bands they will ultimately end up with.  I will gladly refuse gigs like this.  It is like a breath of self-respect.


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Re: Cheapo gigs
« Reply #1 on: May 21, 2014, 06:15:05 pm »
The up-side?  They book garage bands who are barely 21, who bring their under-aged friends, the joint serves them, they get busted, they get shut down, new owners, next deal................Ya get what you pay for.....ALWAYS!
They call it the Blues, but the shit makes me SMILE!


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Re: Cheapo gigs
« Reply #2 on: May 21, 2014, 11:19:31 pm »
Unless you are like me who always plays for free! 
Does anyone ever read these things.  I have some guitars, some amps and some effects but none of them play the guitar for me.... Yet.


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Re: Cheapo gigs
« Reply #3 on: June 01, 2014, 08:46:55 pm »
Sounds like you've got the right idea. Leave those places for the garage bands. If they're loosing their shirt by providing entertainment then they're teetering on the fence anyway. Probably won't be open for best they'll just scrape by.
I like to stop by potential gigs when no band is playing just to see if people even patronize the place. We've locked in about 5 spots within 30 mins drive from us that we play on a regular basis. They all have one thing in common, they're great places to eat. There's always a good crowd to play for.