Discussion in 'Band Management [BG]' started by Metalbasspro, May 20, 2018.

  1. Metalbasspro


    Feb 9, 2009
    WA state
    Where some of the issues will be brought up by everyone. The below are my ideas. Seeking Advice on if these ideas are good or not. Some of the stuff you may think should be tightened up even more and I might agree but the guys in the band are young and I don't want to go too harsh.

    Any additional ideas I am missing by all means bring them up.......


    Based on recent events and chat with Five Finger Death Punch's manager I have suggestions for some policy ideas.

    1. No more buy on gigs.

    2. Create a performance request form we have all booking agents fill out. The form should include the obvious stuff like dates, times, load in and sound check options as well as expected pay of expenses or cold hard cash for playing. We can look at the information given as a bid we either accept or decline.

    3. Limit the range we travel for show to 7 hour drive on current transportation assets. Further distances would require renting more reliable transportation Etc. Reason: If we suffer a break down the further out the more difficult and time consuming to recover the vehicles etc.

    4. Each out of our area gig goes through a review process where we consider pros and cons based on all available information to determine the worth of taking the gig based on the info given on return of our performance request form. We would also confirm days off from work a minimum of two weeks before the gig or Cancel the gig. Most employer policies give want two week notice for taking a day off so that should be the time off should be approved with in two weeks of the show.

    Who is responsible for repairs: Owners of vehicles are responsible for repairs however recovery costs, towing costs associated with band business come form band members or the band fund while on road out of our area. This should include the van as well as personal vehicles taken to the gig with the caveat that those vehicles be necessary to the operations of the band not because of convenience. Generally since we have only a van and no trailer this should only cover the van and one additional vehicle.

    5. Band loans: Personal band loans or loans to members with band funds are no longer allowed, they are un professional and never end well. Gear loans should only be done based on needs and not wants. All band loans for gear should have a set period of time to be re paid say two two months maximum. All bands loans should be voted on by all members and approved before hand in written form (Facebook works) before anything is paid out and so we have clear record of it. Anyone getting a loan should hand write an IOU to be kept with the band’s cash for up dating and records keeping. When it’s paid off the IOU can be signed as paid and returned to the member who paid off the loan. When loans are not paid back on time an equal amount of the loan should be distributed to each of the members who do not have loans out and the loan then forgiven.

    6. A band fund ledger should be kept on out secret Facebook group like the latest version of songs thread. This will be a running account of income and pay outs as well as IOU’s so we can all see it and keep track of progress. The person who will keep this tab will by default be the person keeping the cash on hand.

    7. Establish miles from our base town that we consider our area. Whatever the distance to Weed stock was I think should be the milage limit on what we consider our area. After that point I believe we should consider it an out of town show or regional show.

    8. No free shows out of our local area. Establish a bare minimum for those asking us to play free out of our area. This allows us to still consider all shows but if someone is not willing to kick down a token amount when they have people at their venue I don’t see why we should care about playing there. 50 Dollar minimum is my suggestion for 3 hours or less driving and 100.00 and up for anything more involved and then only considering the exposure value of said shows. Only exceptions would be free entry gigs or free shows like weedstock.

    9. When something is posted for vote on the Facebook page, not voting or ignoring it slows the machine down. Items posted for vote need your attention within 72 hours maximum but preferably right away or when you see it. If someone posts should we do this or that non voting or ignoring the vote is considered a YES vote after 72 hours.

    Second Section: TO DO LIST Observations and suggestions.

    1. Put up Band pages we keep talking about doing but never have.

    2. At some point as we near end of summer shut down all but local gigs and focus on getting some more material written and rehearsed to playability. Covers too. Suggest 5 new covers picked by each member so long as they can be learned and played by all. Maybe each person picks 1 song with 4 alternates to choose from.

    3. Save 3,000 then open a band bank account.

    4. The bend gig that had to be cancelled last minute has left some damage. I suggest Motel fee be paid back (me) and since Second Guitar player is out 300 dollars for days off he did not need to take off that his band loan on the marshall cab be forgiven and to wipe the slate clean forgive the current loan Drummer has on the drum heads. Any personal loans need to be paid back ASAP. Then lets stick to a policy on this.

    5. Drums are in poor condition and seem to be in need of total replacement. The Bass drum kick breaking down during the set was a wake up call but I am not sure how to raise the needed funds. Any ideas?

    6. Again I want to suggest that money raised from Merch, CD’s, Shirt and gigs be kept in separate funds so that we know how much we have to replenish the merch. This idea has been blown off but I am going on record to state it will not end well. Re consider this.

    7. USE the Facebook page for discussions. Had we been using it we might have figured out before it was too late that the bend show was in trouble. When I suggest we discuss something on Facebook don’t put it off by saying bring it up at practice. This is nothing but procrastinating and sometimes written form is better. Half the time issues are forgotten. We need both and both should be seen as equal.
    Last edited: May 21, 2018
    Pbassmanca likes this.
  2. TWolf


    Jan 20, 2011
    The Deep South
    I'll take a shot at a few of these:

    ***The band fund and loans.
    I am an advocate of band funds and have one in my current project. No way , No how , are there any personal loans coming out of the band fund. Even for gear. Every member is responsible for their own gear, replacement, maintenance, upgrades, etc. Since gear loans are something you have already started, it may be difficult to pull this back. I know you mentioned in the earlier thread that the other band members are fairly young. Do they not have day jobs that can support their music hobby?
    For us the band fund is clearly spelled out what it is used for and what it is not used for. Our set up is 10% off the top from gig pay goes to the band first. Then that money may be used for X,Y, and Z. In our case X,Y, and Z is band needs and expenses such as a backdrop banner/logo, webpage expenses, out of town gig travel, studio expenses, and anything on the PA that needs to be replaced like new cables, etc. Establishing a merch inventory is also allowed, though we haven't done that yet. What is not allowed is any personal gear purchases or upgrades, that is each members responsibility.
    About the $3000 account start. We don't have near that much in our fund. It is capped at $1000 and the cash is held by the BL. There is a ledger available and ALL expenditures are known and discussed before being made. Once the $1000 cap is reached, the gig pay is divided evenly among members with no band fund taken. We might (but haven't yet) continue to allocate beyond the $1000 cap if we knew we needed to save for some large expense on the horizon like extended studio time or a large initial merch order.

    ***Regarding merch, which we haven't gotten to that point yet, but the thinking is that merch income will be allocated firstly to the expense of replacing what was sold and any remaining profit would be divided among each member. In other words, the band fund, and merch income would remain separate with merch being its own money making (hopefully) entity.

    ***I like your thoughts on breaking down the area around your town to what is considered local, regional, etc. And the idea of a minimum pay level required to travel further into each designated zone.
  3. RustyAxe


    Jul 8, 2008
    It might work. But in my experience if I need to write down instructions on being a band for my bandmates, it won't be long before I start looking for a band that already gets it. And if my drummer can't afford to buy a new kit or upgrade what he has, we might be looking for another drummer. Darned sure I would have NO part in paying for someone else's gear. And a band fund is NOT a piggy bank ... you say that there will be no personal loans, but in the next sentence you begin to outline just that.

    I ever I saw a band in need of a band leader, this might be it. You seem to be focused more on spending money than hustling to get gigs that create income (how many paying gigs have you played in the last six months?). Or is your business plan to always be in the red?
  4. Metalbasspro


    Feb 9, 2009
    WA state
    As I mentioned I might not agree with some of the stuff I am advocating. Band funds should not go to band gear loans but the reality is these guys are young and other then myself and the main guitar player no one has any money. Just to play the last three gigs the drummer needed new drum heads. His drums are pretty junky. They all have jobs but they all do not live at home and have bills. My idea of allowing gear loans is a compromise. Replacing the Drummer is not possible. Three of them are high school buddies and the area is small. He's also a good drummer when I can get him to stop playing drum solos during the songs. Since I know some loans will not be repaid that is why I have the idea on paying out to members the loan amount after two months. They won't like that but then they can always avoid it by paying the loan back.
  5. JRA

    JRA my words = opinion Supporting Member


    OP: we can't possibly know what you're really dealing with here, but it sounds like you may have the most/best experience when dealing with the issues you are attempting to confront and resolve. rustyaxe's take would surely eliminate/resolve some of them. good luck on this venture! :thumbsup:
  6. Metalbasspro


    Feb 9, 2009
    WA state
    If it was possible to detail what I am dealing with I would but it would be a long books worth LOL
    Pbassmanca likes this.
  7. buldog5151bass

    buldog5151bass Kibble, milkbones, and P Basses. And redheads.

    Oct 22, 2003
    Unless you are incorporated, every penny is declared and accounted for, and you have complete and accurate books, I don't believe in band accounts or equipment. And NO to loans, ever.
    Last edited: May 20, 2018
    Pbassmanca likes this.
  8. rllefebv


    Oct 17, 2000
    Newberg, Oregon
    I think I need to go hug my bandmates!!

  9. juancaminos

    juancaminos Supporting Member

    We had equal pay for all. Everyone was responsible for their own equipment. I personally bought and maintained all pa equipment and merch. Tip jar dollars were not split, they went into a fund for the banner, light bulb replacement, some promo items (paper, folders, blank cd's) and beads.

    If someone need help with a personal item and didn't have the cash a loan was arranged between myself or the singer (my partner in the band), so that would be a personal thing. The person needing the loan put his equipment up for colladeral. That is how or singer ended up with a real nice Marshall guitar amp. This guitarist eventually ended up homeless with his Strat in pawn and amp with singer. Even thought he was the best guitarist we ever had, we had to say good-bye.
  10. Chango Malo

    Chango Malo

    Apr 8, 2017
    yup. I just sent a message to the rest of the band to that effect.
    redwingxix and oldrocker like this.
  11. Metalbasspro


    Feb 9, 2009
    WA state
    So we actually had the meeting today when someone could not make it monday. The Results, they liked all of my ideas except the band loan issues.

    While I brought this up the singer who has a loan out was cringing. I knew it would be un comfortable and I was not looking forward to it but the situation was we got paid something like 140 dollars and the singer being the man who was paid took it home and I assumed planned to declare it next time we got together but at that time he was in the hole and has like ZERO money for food. SO he needed it and declared as much to the, main guitarist. He plans to pay it back but I raised the question of time frames. Made it clear I was not comfortable with that type of thing with the singer making mention that it was never a loan just that it was an emergency. He made mention three times and I had to cut to the chase and told him I did not see the difference that to me it's a loan. But he's going to pay it back ok. I suggested it not be allowed in the future but these guys are young with what I would call an idealistic sense of fair play. They want to keep it an option. So I said I had the idea to cover this situation with what I would be comfortable with and that was a pay out of the loan amount to other members and then forgiving the original loan and start over. They asked how that would help the band. I said Oh it won't help at all. I was hoping it would be a compliance measure to ensure loans get re paid with in a reasonable time frame. But as I said that was the one thing I could not seek them on. Maybe the Second Guitarist agreed but he did not say.

    Everything else is now policy.

    PS and I did say that no reason why members can't borrow from other members and leave band funds out of it. You can only lead a horse to water
    Pbassmanca likes this.
  12. buldog5151bass

    buldog5151bass Kibble, milkbones, and P Basses. And redheads.

    Oct 22, 2003
    It should not be the job of a struggling band to give this guy money that other members aren't getting.
  13. gln1955

    gln1955 Supporting Member

    Aug 25, 2014
    Ohio, USA
    If you paid everyone from gig proceeds instead of having a band fund, maybe your bandmates wouldn't need loans.
    juancaminos likes this.
  14. Metalbasspro


    Feb 9, 2009
    WA state
    This is the way original bands operate. If we paid all the money into our pockets it would be coming back out for expenses and merch. We had to do this once to get started.
  15. AztecViking

    AztecViking Supporting Member

    Oct 12, 2010
    EndlessSummerVille, CA
    Just curious about this from item #1...

    "1. No more buy on gigs unless it’s like Behemoth or someone like that."

    Does "buy on gigs" mean pay to play?
  16. Metalbasspro


    Feb 9, 2009
    WA state
    Yes and I have a feeling they know better too. When we were loading our gear back into the band room the Drummer did not think we were practicing. He had other things to do but the guitarist who drove 30 miles wanted to. The Drummer said he made other plans. The Guitar player told him bluntly that it was not his problem. In other situations he will not think in these terms.

    The Singer lives beyond his means, when I suggested he rent the apartment next door, a 500 a month unit that we could move the band into and pay 200 of his rent but he'd have to have band gear in his living room he said he needs his space.
  17. Metalbasspro


    Feb 9, 2009
    WA state
    Yes, the story is, I messaged a known slimy promotor about getting on one of his music fests and he messaged back diverting me to a show that went down last tuesday. It was opening for a national act and he offered us the spot for 250.00 dollars. I knew right away that the fee just so happens to be the venue fee you get charged if you do not bring in a minimum of 35 people. Right away knowing we had 900 in band funds and shows coming up that would require expenses from that fund I was not in favor of it. I could have said no on behalf of the band and saved us from disaster but it's not my decision so I brought it to the band. The main guitar player told me in private I should post the gig for band consideration but the he was going to vote no.

    By time I got back from work the drummer had talked him into it. We were given 300 dollars worth of tickets that I predicted we would not sell more then ten of. As it turned out we sold 7. While I was against the show I did at least think this national act would draw some people we would not otherwise be exposed to.

    Boy was that wrong. Two of the bands coming in, one on tour and a regional band of some popularity cancelled, one due to slimy promotor the other to medical issues leaving just us and the main act. And we were not in most of the promotional materials until a last night radio spot add.

    This was a co show by two promotors I guess behind the scenes things were getting heated and us being charged to play was one of the last straws the out of town promotor was told not to show up or he was going to be punched in the mouth so we never saw him.

    There was at best 40 people there with maybe 55 total from bands and road crew. The band did learn from it, NO More pay to play on a week night or any night unless it's like a really big band. And since really big bands do not go there it won't be an issue.
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  18. You may want to rethink this one, or at least investigate it further. The minute you open that account, you become a legal entity that may/will come under more financial scrutiny on the state and federal level and will be playing under a new set of rules. Spend a little of that band kitty talking to a tax lawyer in your jurisdiction. Years ago, I just opened a checking account under the bands name and opened up a big old can of worms, with city, state of feds wanting their cut. Until your venues/promoters start 1099'ing you, keep it a cash enterprise. When you start pulling in some money, choose a band leader and make everyone else a private contractor and send them the appropriate tax forms when the time comes, and file with agencies you need to. Makes them responsible for their own income reporting and keeps your in the clear.
  19. Metalbasspro


    Feb 9, 2009
    WA state

    Good point and I will bring that up. We have a band artistic director but the guys like Democracy.
  20. Think in what terms? Was this supposed to be a practice or a band meeting?
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