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general existential Band Management gripe

Discussion in 'Band Management [BG]' started by bolophonic, Jul 8, 2012.


  1. bolophonic

    bolophonic

    Dec 10, 2009
    Durham, NC
    One of the bands that I play with is at the point of a breakthrough. It is a true labor of love for all involved and we have made astonishing musical accomplishments in the last couple of years. Our band leader is a true musical visionary, but think we may have reached the point of needing a true manager. In a few years, we have come from a rag-tag ensemble to become a razor sharp band and people are starting to take notice. What began as an ultra part-time recording experiment is turning into a very organic, cohesive body of work and the band leader has created something that genuinely radiates from his heart and in my opinion is a rare gift of love to the world.

    Problem is, now that our shows have started to generate a huge local buzz, our leader is showing a reluctance to embrace our popularity in any way that would capitalize on it. Part of this, I believe, is a desire to keep the project small and manageable, because scheduling can be a nightmare. I also believe there is a genuine hesitation to sully the whole affair with money. And I understand that all too well, because I come from a background of DIY hardcore shows that has netted me about -$50,000 over a lifetime.

    The band leader truly is my favorite, closest friend. I would never quit this band, but I am DYING to turn the business end over to a manager. What little accounting I have inquired about tells me that we are ready to start playing better shows and getting paid more.
     
  2. Tractorr

    Tractorr

    Aug 23, 2011
    Philadelphia
    Well on the one hand giving those responsibilities to someone else would free you guys to only think about music provided you trust the person and they understand your vision.

    That vision part is the harder part. You guys need to decide what your boundaries are as a band. Are their certain lines you are not willing to cross. I understand when people don't want to compromise their vision by doing things they don't want to do, but if you are just making the music you want to make there isn't anything wrong with getting paid for it.
     
  3. bolophonic

    bolophonic

    Dec 10, 2009
    Durham, NC
    I think we can find someone that we can trust to represent our vision with integrity. None of us are greedy, but I feel like at the end of the night, the clubs are coming out a little too far ahead.
     
  4. PlungerModerno

    PlungerModerno

    Apr 12, 2012
    Ireland
    It's a hard call,

    Zeppelin were famous for taking a larger share of live revenue than other groups. Remember, your leverage is dependant on your demand. The venues should have an Idea if you could go elsewhere, and that's the ideal position to find yourself in as a band. You already knew that though.

    I hope it all works out. :hyper:
     
  5. jmattbassplaya

    jmattbassplaya Looking for a gig around East Islip, NY!

    Jan 13, 2008
    That's the one thing that scares me about any band - if and when we start becoming a noteworthy band will everyone be willing to do what's needed to make it happen or will people clam up at the idea of actually being successful.

    I think you may need to talk to the rest of your band one on one and really try to get everyone on the same page and behind your thoughts. If you can manage that, then I think you all will need to approach your band leader and tell him that you all feel strongly about your potential and what you can truly accomplish if you guys pick up a manager.
     
  6. Oneirogenic

    Oneirogenic

    Nov 10, 2009
    My band is getting to this point. We need someone to handle getting us more and better bookings. IMO we have a good product and the proof is the highest paying bars in town who almost exclusively hire cover bands and DJs are hiring us and we are packing the place. We can up our game but between the three of us we don't have enough time and know how to do it. Frankly I'm amazed we even made music that has gotten us this far locally.
     
  7. Slowgypsy

    Slowgypsy 4 Fretless Strings

    Dec 12, 2006
    NY & MA
    Time to have a blunt, filled with love and honesty, heart to heart talk with all the band members. Seems like everyone participated in the dynamic efforts that got this project to where it currently is. Everyone needs to participate in a discussion about what the potential of the project is, and where folks would like to take it.

    No getting around it.
     
  8. lfmn16

    lfmn16 SUSPENDED Supporting Member

    Sep 21, 2011
    charles town, wv
    Money doesn't sully anything; what some people will do to get it does. If you are successful money will be made. It's all a matter of who keeps it - you or the clubs.
     
  9. bolophonic

    bolophonic

    Dec 10, 2009
    Durham, NC
    That is exactly right. Thank you all for the thoughtful responses. I think I will enumerate my concerns in writing and then suggest to the band leader that the time has come for a band management meeting and let him call it together. It will give him the opportunity to start polling other members so that I can let a consensus form without him feeling like I went behind his back. Maybe this will be about managing my own expectations, but I am confident that I am not the only one who did the math on the last show and felt like we could be doing better.
     
  10. jmattbassplaya

    jmattbassplaya Looking for a gig around East Islip, NY!

    Jan 13, 2008
    Good idea. Which makes me think I need to have a similar talk with my band. Last year we played a little local place and did a good job filling it up. We made about $200 that night. Just a month ago we played the same place and the house was PACKED. We still made only $200 that night. Time to renegotiate pay, methinks.
     

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