Here was today's exchange with a local place...
Venue: we have openings. Call us. Me: How much do you pay and for how many hours? Venue: I pay depending on what you bring in. I am a fairly new venue and coffee shop, so if you have a following that is great. I have live music Friday and Saturday nights. Me: I play with Berkeley School graduates and professional musicians that that charge a minimum to leave the house. We have invested tens of thousands into equipment and a lifetime into our craft. We have established a following of hundreds of people that expect to be invited to a fun venue. We put on a show that keeps your crowd entertained, dancing and drinking. It is the venue's job to provide a crowd based on their reputation of providing great music and a fun environment, or pull in our crowd based on your merits as a venue. We are the entertainers.
Not sure how new places get that backwards and somehow imagine the band brings in all the people despite the reputation of the venue, or that we would need a venue to bring our crowd and then share half the cover for that privilege. We could rent a vet's hall instead if that was our thing. The caliber of band that would accept that deal does usually not provide the quality of entertainment a venue would require for long-term success or to keep their regulars happy. You’ll get some garage band's co-workers that they bring in for that day. Usually players that cannot book regular gigs at better places. That is not a long-term strategy for a venue’s success. We see it all the time and I know we cannot relay the flaw in that thinking without sounding self-serving. They say most bars go out of business within the first five years of opening. No wonder! I wish you all the luck in the world; your place seems nice and I understand your dilemma. Please call us if decide you need quality entertainment to help drive up regular attendance for your long-term success. We would be happy to be paid a fair price to perform.
Hope it drums up some gigs. Been getting calls from places wanting us to play for half the door for a one hour set. Doubt if our people will want to drive to some random club to pay $10 to hear us for 45 min. I'd need 80 of our fans to even break even. These club owners tell me it would be good for "exposure." I got exposure, show me the money to pay my guys and we'll keep the place hopping and fill it up with people that want to party more than 45 minutes with us, before hearing some other random "God I hope they don't suck" lineup that we have not picked ourselves.
I play with some of the best players in Phoenix and they spent fortunes on education and equipment. I can't blame them for wanting to get paid to load up and play. I'd play for free, but I charge at least $100 for myself to load up all my equipment and drive to play my ass off. WTF!
Gal had me listen with a discerning ear to the sound of my Line 6 vs. his tube amp and pedals, had to admit the right pedals sound much better coming from a tube amp. Which led to three months of auditioning pedals and amps.
Went with: Laney Lionheart Amp (single 12") a Shur Riot Distortion Klon Centaur Overdrive Wampler EGO compressor TC Electronic delay, reverb, flanger, vibrato, and tuner and finished with a EVH Cry Baby
I am in heaven! I may never need to buy another pedal...lol, yeah right!
just traded in my bigass amp and effects for a Line 6 HD500. spent all week dialing in my settings. So far I am loving it. Will see how it goes this weekend. We have two gigs.