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Gig question

Discussion in 'Band Management [BG]' started by iriegnome, Jan 24, 2019.

  1. iriegnome

    iriegnome Bassstar style Supporting Member

    Nov 23, 2001
    Kenosha, WI 53140
    There is a pretty large venue where I live. A pretty famous one actually. We just got a call to open for a major act coming through town. All that is pretty cool. We have played this venue before as different bands, but this would be our foot in the door for the current band. Here is the rub. They only offered us $250 for 1 hour opening slot. That part is ok. However we have to haul our B3 and Leslie for the 1 hour show. Oh, did I mention that the club is requiring us to backline our gear (all of it) for the headliner? Did I mention this was also on a Thursday night? This is for a band who are Legends. I have played with legends before, so I am not star struck, but a little dumbfounded at the extremely low pay for what we have to provide. I know darn well, they are not going to the local PA rental facility and getting a Hammond B3 and Leslie for the night for $250...
    HolmeBass, Ellery, MCF and 2 others like this.
  2. Scottgun


    Jan 24, 2004
    South Carolina
    So I'm guessing your question is should you take the gig?

    Sounds like lots of hard work for not much money, so I'd say your question is whether the benefits besides the money make it worthwhile.

    I'm guessing there's no acceptable substitute for a B3 and a leslie?
    getrhythm and iriegnome like this.
  3. iriegnome

    iriegnome Bassstar style Supporting Member

    Nov 23, 2001
    Kenosha, WI 53140
    When we were first questioned about the gig, the only thing the club owner was looking to use was our B3 and leslie. Then he wanted details about my bass rig (DNA, which they never heard of) and the guitar amp (VHT Pitbull, which they never heard of). In our initial discussion, the drums were listed as DW Custom 5 piece, so I assume they hear of DW..
  4. viper4000


    Aug 17, 2010
    Sounds like you are playing for free, and they are renting the backline from you for $250. If you think sharing a bill with this group of legends is worth it as a resume builder is up to you. But you are playing a free gig.
  5. Chuck King

    Chuck King Supporting Member

    Dec 15, 2006
    That really sucks because on the one hand it sounds like a great gig, but that is such a slimy move by the venue re the backline issue, how could you do that gig without feeling like you've been bent over and reamed?

    The backline requirement is entirely to save them the cost of fulfilling their contractual obligation to provide back-line material. That's a lot of gear you've listed, and would cost a lot to rent. The low pay is just insult on top of injury. Given the comparative cost of backline rental, you guys aren't just doing that gig for free: you will be getting negative net income for that gig. I'd guess it would cost close to a grand to rent all that stuff---a B3 and a Leslie are specialty items, so maybe more. So you're essentially giving them many hundreds of dollars in free service in equipment rental, aside from whatever your performance is worth.

    I would wonder whether you can pass on it without ruining any relationship you have with the venue. But, if this is how they do business, do you have better prospects to look forward to with them? On the other hand, they may be sort of over a barrel here; maybe you can negotiate something better. But I will acknowledge that I am just some guy on the web and I don't know the dynamics of your relationship with this venue or the people involved, which would be the important considerations re any negotiation strategy.
    Last edited: Jan 24, 2019
  6. Oddly

    Oddly Unofficial TalkBass Cartographer! Supporting Member

    Jan 17, 2014
    Dublin, Ireland.
    Sounds like someone is looking to take advantage of you here...most likely not the legendary touring band (but why be shy about naming them....maybe they do in fact have a reputation for shafting local bands that others on here may verify).

    You're essentially playing 'for exposure' here...if you're cool with that, then great.
    However, if it was me, I'd say no.
    Sure, this gig might get you a foot in the door, but you'll be seen as a band who'll play for nothing.
    Once that starts, it'll be very hard to change.
    Glenn Mac, 6tzguy, PeteOlig and 10 others like this.
  7. Paulabass

    Paulabass Supporting Member

    Sep 18, 2017
    Nope. Not even Hammond's own digital B3.
    40Hz, 2cooltoolz, JBW and 4 others like this.
  8. seansbrew

    seansbrew Supporting Member

    Oct 23, 2000
    Mesa AZ.
    What does the rest of your band think? I think that's all that matters.

    My band plays a small club that offers pro sound for 12 people. We bring our own gear but don't provide it for anyone else. We make 4 to 5 hundred.

    I think you are being ripped off.
  9. DirtDog


    Jun 7, 2002
    The Deep North
    That's my take too. The cranky part of me would suggest adding on a $250 delivery fee on top of the rental.
  10. Paulabass

    Paulabass Supporting Member

    Sep 18, 2017
    So, really, you're playing free, and renting them a B for 250 dollars. If you are cool with that, and think the exposure is worth it, that's fine. I don't see any other breakdown of the money.
    juancaminos and Mr_Moo like this.
  11. FunkHead

    FunkHead Supporting Member

    Mar 10, 2007
    That's worse than playing for free. You would be providing them with about a $500 to $1000 service.
    I would never take that gig. And I play for the love of playing.
    Glenn Mac, Munjibunga, Mr_Moo and 2 others like this.
  12. GBBSbassist

    GBBSbassist I actually play more guitar... Supporting Member

    Nov 23, 2010
    That's an odd situation.

    First off, I'm quite perplexed that an established touring act is using random gear from other bands other than gear they're used to using to acquire a consistent sound. I've seen a few specific bands play many times and they use the same gear over and over for a reason. I've never once watched a rig rundown video on Premier Guitar only to have the band say "We just use the opener's gear".

    Personally, I'm not really star struck either. My originals band has turned down opening gigs for bigger bands coming through town plenty of times because of various reasons. I'd contact the person you've been dealing with at the venue and tell them you are interested in playing but you won't be providing a backline of gear unless they can provide some kind of contract regarding the possibility of damage to the gear, and to provoke a bit of thought on their part, mention the costs of the gear they're asking you to just let strangers use with no guarantees.
  13. MattZilla


    Jun 26, 2013
    quoted for emphasis.

    I wouldn't say "no", but I would say that "that price is way off, bud."
    donkeygrl, Glenn Mac, dBChad and 11 others like this.
  14. FunkHead

    FunkHead Supporting Member

    Mar 10, 2007
    Great point! Politely trying to negotiate a better payout is the Best solution now that you mention it.
  15. bass40hz

    bass40hz Cigar smoker, scotch drinker, American Patriot Supporting Member

    Aug 13, 2014
    Sussex County, NJ
    no endorsements yet...Are you listening Spector, DR, GK, Line6?
    In the end, its a pay to play if you break it down and consider the use of all your gear as the "cash" to get you on that stage.
    Rock on.
    Misfit Wookiee, Winoman and LBS-bass like this.
  16. BlueShox

    BlueShox Registered Turtle Supporting Member

    Jul 14, 2007
    West Columbia, SC
    I, too, am curious as to which group of Legends show up a random concert venue willing to use what whatever equipment that just so happens to be there at the moment.
  17. Siggy

    Siggy Supporting Member

    Mar 15, 2003
    Columbus Ohio
    Sounds like they are renting your gear for $250 plus 1 hour exposure.

    It might be fun if roadies do the load in and out..
  18. mrcbass


    Jan 14, 2016
    Sacramento, CA
    If the exposure is worth it, then it's a cheap way to get it. If not, you're getting ripped off.

    And what happens if the "Legends" wreck your gear?
  19. iriegnome

    iriegnome Bassstar style Supporting Member

    Nov 23, 2001
    Kenosha, WI 53140
    Everyone has great points. The rest of my band has the same points as do I! We do not need the exposure. Hometown crowd and such. We have not signed a final contract and are working out details as far as advertising, promotion (print, radio, television), future plans to book other shows for our band and a whole slew of other things. We have had about 3 weeks of back and forth email conversations about getting our gear approved by the headlining act. I am sure the club owner is working off their rider for backline. The truth is, if we were the headliner playing this club, we would probably be sharing my bass rig and our drums with the opener so there would be less change over time anyway.
    djaxup and GBBSbassist like this.
  20. Nev375


    Nov 2, 2010
    Has anyone tried to counteroffer?

    These must be the least legendary legends I've never heard of.

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