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Big gig, big big gig!! Need extra ammo.

Discussion in 'Band Management [BG]' started by odie, Aug 1, 2004.

  1. odie

    odie Supporting Member

    We are going to be playing at club we have been trying to get into for 3-4 years. It is a good paying gig and they even give free room and board via their contract. They get some bigger national bands and will have anything from country or blues to modern newer rock. More blues/classic/country than anything else. We play 80's to Linkin Park.

    Are problem is this. This place is about 50 miles away from were we play on a regular basis. It is the summer, Minnesota is a hard place for a local band during the summer months. No one wants to go out to see a local or semi local band. Everyone is going to fairs, festivals, and outdoor music etc, camping on vacation etc.

    We will be able to 30-60 of out hard core fans and friends to go. But that is about it. What can we do to try to get a better draw?? Do flyers help?? If so where should we sticking these?? It is a small town of 20,000 were we have no idea of where people hanout.

    Ideas?? We really want to get back in here on a regular basis.
  2. Eyescream


    Feb 4, 2004
    Knoxville, TN
    Try calling radiostations that have a local music show, does the paper have an entertainment section?

    I know you're in a small, crappy little town in MN, but beyond that I don't know anything. Are you close enough to the twin cities that advertising there might help?

    My number 1 suggestion: Move to a large city if you want to play live.
  3. odie

    odie Supporting Member

    Twin Cities is about 100 miles away.

    No way I can move. Own a home daughter in school etc. Plus the town I live in has 100,000 people not including the towns around it.

    Their is plenty of places to play here and in the surrounding areas. But this is a place that is hard for smaller bands to get into. Plus it pays well. $700 first time and more if they want us back
  4. odie

    odie Supporting Member

    I will look into seeing what radio stations cover that area and maybe call the rock station.
  5. Eyescream


    Feb 4, 2004
    Knoxville, TN
    Does whatever town you live in have an entertainment magazine like Knoxville's Metro Pulse or Atlanta's Creative Loafing? Find out, and see what you have to do to get your date listed in there.
  6. odie

    odie Supporting Member

    Good idea!!! But I think it does it monthly rather than weekly. Damn I should have started this thread a month ago!! :eyebrow: :(
  7. Good. Good!! Offer to post a banner of the radio station (by the stage) and mention them at the gig every hour, in exchange for advertising your band / club prior to the gig.

  8. RicPlaya


    Apr 22, 2003
    Whitmoretucky MI
    Rent a bus to drive everyone's drunk behind to and from the gig back to your hometown. Charge just enough to pay for the bus and bring all your friends with you!
  9. We used to have a similar problem a few years ago. Then we hit on the obvious. Get a manager.

    It sounds big time but it really isn't. Here is how it works. You find a guy who is entusiastic about the band, is a nice chap (very important to get along) and is willing to put effort into promoting the band by any means which he may deem necessary - ideally he need not even consult the band if you trust him enough. In return, he get to share in the pay of the band as any other member of the band and maybe get a cut of any moneys made from recordings.

    The benefit of this is that there is a person who is taking care of all this while the band can concentrate on the music. The difference this makes to a band (provided the person is suitable as manager) cannot be underestimated.
  10. Matt Ides

    Matt Ides

    May 12, 2004
    Minneapolis, MN
    If this is 'the great gig in the sky' hit that town big time. Go to all the shows and hand out flyers, hit the fest, pretty much go where ever you can and promote it where people will be able to drive to the gig.

    Not sure about your timeline...but can you try and squeeze a few smaller gigs in that town...that always helps..build a following there.

    Good luck.
  11. rickbass

    rickbass Supporting Member


    > For one thing, I'd get some artwork together for handbills/flyers using a picture of your ex-Governor, Jesse Ventura's face, your gig's info, and that says something cutesy, like, "BE THERE or I'll break your face!" and get a graphic artist to deliver it at your local business card store.
    It's not like he's not going to sue you over it, even in the very unlikely event he even sees one flyer....he has bigger fish to fry. Even if he did see one and got pissed, ""Any publicity is better than none" as the saying goes.
    Buttons are a great pass-out item, especially among hair stylists, because the salons are where the foxes go.....and the "hounds" always follow the "foxes."

    > Put those flyers under car windshield wipers in the parking lots of the clubs and pass them out when the clubs close as people are leaving.
    I think stapling them to utility poles is a waste of time, but you never know. I think the time is better spent putting them in shopping cart baskets .......music lovers have to eat, too......well, some of us.

    > The one I dig - As jive as it may sound, I am in bands/have been in bands, where we rent a stretch limo to deliver us to the club on the first night........I mean a NUTZ limo where we exit the 16-seat limo in front of the people waiting to get into the club just a little before show time.
    They are so impressed!!! (Of course, the gear has already been there all day and we've already done the basic soundcheck).

    There are many more things to say, but I hope you knock `em out, odie!!!!
  12. jive1

    jive1 Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member Commercial User

    Jan 16, 2003
    Owner/Retailer: Jive Sound
    How much time do you have?

    In addition to what others have said:

    Mail out a press release to the local papers and entertainment rags. Since you are an out-of-town band, you might have a little cache'. Include something interesting about your band or band members, as well as the kind of music you do. Some lazy entertainment reporter is gonna get off the hook if you can write a good story for him/her.

    See if you can get a nearby band to open up for you. By doing that you can attract their fans to see your show. It's a win-win situation. They get additional exposure, and you improve your draw.

    If the town allows busking, set up a little acoustic version of your act at the town square or where-ever and perform. Pass the hat, and give a sample of what you do, and hype the gig.

    See if you can play at another venue in the same town, a week or the day before. Even if you play for free, you'll still get exposure, and a place to hype your band to the locals in that town.

    Of course put flyers where it's appropriate, and use your mailing list.
  13. Joe P

    Joe P

    Jul 15, 2004
    Milwaukee, WI
    Wadge said:
    "We used to have a similar problem a few years ago. Then we hit on the obvious. Get a manager."

    I was with a band who played small towns on tour that never had heard of us (E.W. Porter Jr. and the Texas Crude). We did like big dozen-week swings out west at the medium-sized honky-tonks in the early eighties.

    Our MANAGER had these pre-made, canned 'press packs' or something. They looked like regular, objective news reports - something like "hot new up-and-coming 'Outlaw' band to play in Tar Creek in September...". Of course he'd customize it, mentioning the name of the club and town and whatever, and maybe even have a quote or statement from the owner of the honkytonk. It turned out that there are all these little local newpapers that are more than half coupons and ads, but they try to run little, obligatory 'news stories', so they seem like a 'newspaper' - so they just would jump at an easy opportunity for an easy 'article'. This manager knew what was up with this kind of thing, though - I remember that these packs were set up with like different length versions in different column widths, and a little assortment of pictures in these different column widths and two column widths, etc.

    The idea was to make it just too tempting for the paper to use it, because whatever extra size or shape space that they needed to fill up, there'd be some combo out of our presspack that would fit perfect!

    He was pretty sharp. I remember he used to be concerned with our health, and remind us to eat our fiber and be 'regular' and get enough sleep, and he'd send us off with vitamines and stuff (er, I mean 'things' - it was sort of 'don't ask, don't tell' about the 'stuff'). He really was personally concerned for us. Good memories.

    But that press pack thing was pretty cool.