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How can we manage to make a living with this...Gigmasters rant

Discussion in 'Band Management [BG]' started by Pat C., Feb 18, 2019.

  1. Pat C.

    Pat C. Supporting Member

    Jan 1, 2005
    Tuscaloosa, AL, USA
    My old band just got a lead on Gigmasters. That site has not worked well for us, most leads are way under budget. But this one takes the cake. Buckle in, this is gonna be a long one.

    Lead is for a birthday party, held on a Saturday in March at the Grand Hyatt in Buckhead, GA. Just to note, Buckhead GA is the routinely rated one of the wealthiest suburbs in the country. So a small party at a nice hotel, on a Saturday, in a ritzy city.

    Here are the 'clients notes':

    Party guests between ages of 30-90 celebrating my dad's 90th birthday. Expecting 50 people (could be a little less, could be a few more). The theme of the party is "A Life of Service". My dad is a Korean War veteran and has been very active in his community throughout the years. Event will start off at 5:30 with a Social Hour so family members and friends can mingle. Would like for the band or small ensemble to play music while folks are socializing. Dinner will start between 6:30 - 7:00. Would like for band to play soft music during dinner. Birthday program will begin around 8:00 with a few speakers. We'll have a presentation by the "Buffalo Soldiers" who will recognize my dad's military service. Dad served in both the Navy and the Army. Would like for the ensemble to play both the Army and Navy service songs before the reading of his military service records and the presenting of his service medals. After all the speaking and presenting, we'll be ready to serve the cake (should be around 8:45-9:00). Would like for the ensemble to play the music so that we can sing "Happy Birthday" to my dad. After we sing the traditional "Happy Birthday" song, would like the ensemble to do a rendition of Stevie Wonder's "Happy Birthday" song. We cut the cake and then move into "Party" Mode sometime between 9:15-9:30. In "Party Mode" until 11:30. Thinking to do a mix of: Motown, Pre-Motown (dad in military at 17), 70's, 80s, 90's popular tunes and even music of today (old folks know how to do the Cupid Shuffle and Electric Slide :) Just my thoughts. I'm open to suggestions. Thank you.

    So to summarize - they want Six Hours of music - cocktail hour, dinner, birthday songs, other special request music plus two hours of dance music, covering oldies, Motown and all decades though modern day.

    The budget: $300-500

    Yeah, that's the proposed band rate, not per band member. I don't even understand how people can get so completely mis-value the cost of entertainment. I'm glad I'm playing in a different band now where someone else handles the booking, because I'm sure I could even deal with this stuff coming across my desk and not be infuriated.
    eJake, Winoman, MCF and 12 others like this.
  2. two fingers

    two fingers Opinionated blowhard. But not mad about it. Gold Supporting Member

    Feb 7, 2005
    Eastern NC USA
    I think you answered you own question in your post. They don't understand. 'Nuff said.
    Winoman, Rickter, dan1952 and 10 others like this.
  3. friskinator

    friskinator Supporting Member

    Apr 5, 2007
    Montreal, QC
    I did plenty of gigs like this in Buckhead when I lived in ATL. Probably even some at that Hyatt. Our bandleader wouldn't have even considered it unless we could each walk with $300-400 per man after expenses. Not total. But if the dad is 90, the child booking the party is probably in their 60s, and they likely don't have a clue as to how live music booking works.
  4. buldog5151bass

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

    Oct 22, 2003
    Part of the fun of the internet. My guess is the just don't understand. They basically want a wedding band to do a wedding gig.
    rtav likes this.
  5. Ha, my brother is a DJ and he wouldn't take a 6 hour gig for 5 bills.

    eJake, DJ Bebop, Charlzm and 3 others like this.
  6. PauFerro


    Jun 8, 2008
    United States
    I have noticed the same on these lead generation sites. They want the band there for 5-6 hours. At least in your case, this person specified the agenda for the day so you know how much of that time is invested in performance.

    Leads generation services like this put you in the thick of competition. They have the advantage of making leads fall into your lap, but they bring the prices down for anyone who quotes on them.
    Last edited: Feb 19, 2019
    DrayMiles and Luigir like this.
  7. 40Hz

    40Hz Supporting Member

    Clueless possibly. But those of us in our 60s were used to seeing (and paying) far more money for live music than the current crop of musicians are getting today. So I don’t think it’s necessarily purely age related.

    When I was with the student committee booking bands for my high school’s mixers, we we’re regularly paying $350 (the going local rate) for about 4 hours play time. And that was back in 1970. That’s around $2300 in today’s dollars. Which in a five member band averages out to better than $100/hr - per band member.

    I don’t know too many bands playing their local music scene today who are regularly seeing that kind of money.
    Last edited: Feb 19, 2019
    pellomoco14, MCF, HolmeBass and 2 others like this.
  8. Pacman

    Pacman Layin' Down Time Staff Member Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 1, 2000
    Omaha, Nebraska
    Endorsing Artist: Roscoe Guitars, DR Strings, Aguilar Amplification
    Give them a serious quote, and move on. They’ll either get a clue or they won’t. Neither of which is your problem
  9. "I think you forgot a couple of zero's in your budget".
    MCF, DJ Bebop and mikewalker like this.
  10. Paulabass

    Paulabass Supporting Member

    Sep 18, 2017
    I was tearing down after a very popular (and long lived) band, and a guy approached me, asking if the band would play his backyard party. I explained that I wasn't with the band, but I know what we just paid them, plus add a stage, and P.A. and lights (Which I quote to the penny.) I said right around $8000. He responded VERY angrily 'I can get a better band than this for $500!!!!' Go ahead. No clue.
    pcake, eJake, MCF and 7 others like this.
  11. gln1955

    gln1955 Supporting Member

    Aug 25, 2014
    Ohio, USA
    What? You want to be paid more than the hotel bus boys?
    KarateChris, DJ Bebop, Holdsg and 4 others like this.
  12. 40Hz

    40Hz Supporting Member

    Best comeback I ever heard to use on someone who claims they can get better band than yours cheaper. Saw it on a sign by the cash register in a little shop on Cape Cod.

    “We gave no quarrel with those who sell for less. They should know better than anyone what their junk is actually worth.”
    Last edited: Feb 19, 2019
  13. Greyvagabond

    Greyvagabond Supporting Member

    Aug 17, 2007
    Los Angeles
    "But but but, you'll only be playing for like one hour, so its really not that much work!"
    DJ Bebop and smogg like this.
  14. PauFerro


    Jun 8, 2008
    United States
    The thing that gets me is event organizers will pay sound professionals, rent a stage, buy insurance, but they won't pay the musicians.
  15. devnulljp

    devnulljp Supporting Member

    Oct 13, 2009
    BC, Canada
    Admin on the D*A*M Forum
    That's at least partly because sound professionals, stage rental people, and insurance companies won't do it for free/peanuts/exposure, while there are always loads of musicians that will. We do this to ourselves.
    SLIV, Barisaxman, C_Becker and 29 others like this.
  16. voodoobassist

    voodoobassist Supporting Member

    Jun 9, 2008
    Tulsa , OK
    Had a similar one last year, on Gigsalad. They wanted a band for a Halloween party. Had a list of Halloween type tunes they wanted, also wanted us to supply a stage, fog machines , lights, etc. 3 hour gig with setup 30 minutes before the event started, approximately 300-350 people attending. Their budget,....................... $150. I wished them the best of luck finding someone.
  17. Bodeanly

    Bodeanly Supporting Member

    Mar 20, 2015
    Not completely terrible if it’s a duo, there’s nothing else in the books, the PA, stage, and lights are provided, there are no traveling expenses, and there’s free food and drink. Just trying to find a bright side.
  18. higain617


    Sep 12, 2013
    Those fancy people didn't get rich by opening their wallets.
  19. LBS-bass

    LBS-bass Supporting Member

    Nov 22, 2017
    Exactly. You cannot hire a sound professional for nothing, but you can hire a band for that, because musicians want to play music above all else and consistently devalue themselves in order to have the opportunities to play.

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