My new classic rock cover band has been recording our booking demo this week. 6 songs, tracking just about everything separately. Some vocals are getting recorded simultaneously for efficiency, but that's it. No overdubbing or multitracking and no adding anything. Anything that's on the demo is what an audience would hear live.
What approaches have other used for booking demos? Anything that's worked particularly well or backfired?
Some venues are asking for live demos,
mostly due to the abuses by the 'best of a thousand takes' bands, and use of ringers.
Ready Freddie & his Ringer Band: "Hey man, Reb Beach played on my demo"
Owner of Club Dubious: "Right arm and solid! Is he gonna be at your gig?"
RF&RB: *cue sound of crickets chirping*
When making (venue) demos for my band,
I resist the urge to add more guitars, hand percussion, extra harmony tracks,
or pretty much anything the venue owner will not hear when we show up.
For bars and clubs, a live demo tends to work out better. The music buyers tend to be savvier, and have experience with a range of demos, including ones where the band sounded nothing like the demo.
For weddings and corporates, a produced demo is good, and a video is even better. Buyers tend not to be as savvy, but impressed by slick production since they are paying more.
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